ISciences Worldwide Water Watch List March 2017

15 March 2017

This map presents a selection of regions likely to encounter significant water anomalies during the one year period beginning in December 2016 and running through November 2017 using 3 months of observed temperature and precipitation data and 9 months of forecast data.

The synopsis that follows provides highlights of regional water forecasts. Regional details are available in ISciences Global Water Monitor & Forecast March 15, 2017 (pdf).

United States: Though the extent of exceptional deficits observed in the prior three months from Missouri south to the Gulf and east to the Atlantic is expected to recede from March through May, exceptional deficits will persist in Arkansas, Missouri, and western Illinois, and moderate deficits will emerge throughout much of the US east of the Mississippi. Surpluses are forecast for the Pacific Northwest, Idaho, northern Nevada, Central California, western Nevada, and western Colorado and are expected to be exceptional in Idaho, parts of Central California, and along the Columbia River.

From June through August exceptional deficits will nearly disappear but moderate deficits will continue to emerge in the eastern half of the country, and more severe deficits will persist in northern Arkansas, southern Missouri, and Virginia. Aforementioned exceptional surpluses in the West will recede but persist in Idaho.

Canada: Exceptional deficits will persist in central Quebec; the southern Ontario-Quebec border; Northumberland County, New Brunswick; southern Newfoundland; and northeastern Manitoba. Severe deficits in central Alberta are forecast to become exceptional, and deficits are forecast for northwestern and central British Columbia. Surpluses are forecast for central Manitoba into Saskatchewan; northwestern Saskatchewan into Alberta; and throughout southern British Columbia. The forecast for June through August indicates an increase in the extent and severity of deficits in Quebec, Ontario, northeastern Manitoba, and British Columbia.

Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean: Exceptional deficits are forecast in Mexico from March through May in Nayarit, Michoacán, and southern Puebla into northern Oaxaca. Deficits are also forecast for the Yucatán Peninsula, the Baja Peninsula, northern Mexico, and Guatemala. Surpluses are forecast for eastern Honduras, Nicaragua, and northern Costa Rica. After May the extent and severity of deficits in Mexico will decrease but moderate deficits are forecast to persist in the south and emerge in Central America.

South America: Though the extent of water deficits in South America is expected to shrink March through May, deficits are forecast in central and eastern states of Brazil, western French Guiana into eastern Suriname, Bolivia, Chile, and coastal Peru. Surpluses are forecast in Paraguay, in a line down western Argentina, in central Buenos Aires Province (Argentina), in Rio Grande do Sul and Paraná (Brazil), northern Peru, northern Guyana, Suriname, and parts of Ecuador. From June through August deficits are forecast to persist across Brazil’s mid-section and emerge in Piauí and across northern Brazil. Deficits are also forecast for Bolivia, Colombia, Venezuela, Guyana, Suriname, French Guiana, coastal Peru, and northern Chile. Surpluses will persist in aforementioned areas of Paraguay and Argentina.

Europe: From March through May widespread surpluses are forecast to emerge in western European Russia, which may be exceptional near St. Petersburg and to the east. Severe to exceptional deficits are forecast for Finland, Estonia, much of Latvia, southern Sweden and Denmark. Scattered moderate deficits are forecast for much of Western and Central Europe with pockets of greater severity in central Germany, southern Austria, Macedonia, and from Rome to Palermo, Italy. Surpluses are forecast for Switzerland and eastern Romania. The June through August forecast indicates primarily moderate deficits throughout most of Europe with widespread exceptional deficits persisting in Finland and Estonia.

Africa: Though the extent of exceptional deficits across the continent will diminish from March through May, severe to exceptional deficits will continue to emerge across northern Africa, especially in Niger. Exceptional deficits are also forecast in southern Somalia and southern Gabon. Deficits are also expected in Congo, Rwanda, Burundi, southeastern Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo, northern Angola, Uganda, western Tanzania, Kenya, and northeastern Mozambique. Surpluses are expected in southeast Sudan, the Okavango Delta in northern Botswana into western Zambia, Zimbabwe, and northern South Africa. From June through August the overall picture will remain much the same, but worth noting is that extreme to exceptional deficits are forecast for nearly all of Egypt during this period, and deficits will emerge in Somaliland, northern Cameroon, and southern Angola.

Middle East: The extent of exceptional deficits in the region is expected to nearly disappear March through May, but moderate to severe deficits are forecast for the Arabian Peninsula and Turkey. Deficits are also forecast for Syria, Jordan, Lebanon, Israel, southern Iraq, and coastal Georgia. Surpluses are forecast in Iran from the central Persian Gulf inland to the center of Kerman Province. From June through August the extent and severity of deficits will increase throughout much of the region, particularly on the Arabian Peninsula.

Central Asia and Russia: Drier than normal conditions will persist in many parts of northern Russia, with exceptional deficits reaching from the Upper Taz River past the Yenisei River to the Lower Tunguska. Surpluses are forecast between the Volga River in Samara Oblast and the Belaya River in the Republic of Bashkortostan. Surpluses will continue to emerge in many parts of Kazakhstan and in Kyrgyzstan. Moderate deficits are forecast for eastern Tajikistan and surpluses in the west. Severe deficits are forecast for south-central Uzbekistan and into northern Turkmenistan. From June through August deficits will continue to emerge in northern Russia with greatest extent and intensity in the Lower Yenisei watershed. Exceptional surpluses will emerge between the Irtysh and Yenisei Rivers.

South Asia: The March through May forecast indicates some relief from deficit conditions for many parts of India. However, severe to extreme deficits are forecast to persist in Gujarat and moderate deficits are forecast in Uttarakhand and in Sri Lanka. Surpluses ranging from moderate to exceptional are forecast for the eastern Ganges Basin, the eastern two-thirds of Nepal, and Bangladesh. Surpluses are also expected along the northern tributaries of the Indus River in Pakistan and in eastern Afghanistan. A pocket of exceptional deficit is forecast to persist near Karachi, Pakistan. The latter six months of the forecast period show the emergence of widespread deficits across India, Nepal, Bhutan, and Bangladesh.

Southeast Asia and the Pacific: For the next three months severe to exceptional deficits are forecast to persist in Cambodia, particularly in the west, and severe to extreme deficits will emerge throughout much of Thailand. Deficits are also forecast for southern Myanmar and Papua New Guinea. Both deficits and surpluses are forecast in Laos during this period and in Vietnam, though surpluses will dominate Vietnam’s central coast. Surpluses are also forecast for the Philippines, North Sulawesi (Indonesia), and Timor-Leste. After May deficits of varying intensity are forecast for much of the region, and are expected to be of greatest severity in Papua New Guinea and Indonesian Borneo.

East Asia: From March through May deficits are forecast to persist in southern Mongolia; western Inner Mongolia, the Tarim Basin and eastern Dzungaria regions of southern Xinjiang, and southern Liaoning in China; and Hokkaido, Japan. Deficits are expected to emerge in southeast China from Zhejiang through eastern Yunnan, and in Taiwan, South Korea, and eastern Honshu, Japan. Moderate deficits will persist in southern Shaanxi and eastern Sichuan, and may become severe along the Han River. Surplus conditions are expected to persist in Jiangsu. Much of eastern China is forecast to transition away from significant water anomalies from June through August, but severe to exceptional deficits will persist in western Inner Mongolia.

Australia: Widespread exceptional deficits in South Australia will nearly disappear from March through May leaving moderate deficits, but widespread deficits of varying severity are forecast in eastern Australia, particularly Queensland, with exceptional deficits in Central West, Queensland. Primarily moderate deficits are forecast for New South Wales, much of Victoria, and in Western Australia south of Perth. Surpluses in the northern part of Western Australia will diminish in severity. After May the forecast indicates considerable improvement with the near-absence of extreme to exceptional deficits, though severe deficits will emerge in eastern Tasmania.


Many analyses reported in ISciences-authored blog posts are based on data generated by the ISciences Water Security Indicator Model (WSIM). Other sources, if used, are referenced in footnotes accompanying individual posts. WSIM is a validated capability that produces monthly reports on current and forecast global freshwater surpluses and deficits with lead times of 1-9 months at 0.5°x0.5° resolution. This capability has been in continuous operation since April 2011 and has proven to provide reliable forecasts of emerging water security concerns in that time-frame. WSIM has the ability to assess the impacts of water anomalies on people, agriculture, and electricity generation. Detailed data, customized visualizations, and reports are available for purchase.

For more information contact

Copyright 2019 ISCIENCES, L.L.C. Global Water Monitor & Forecast Watch List is the property of ISCIENCES, L.L.C. It is protected by U.S. copyright laws and may not be reproduced in any way without the written permission of ISCIENCES, L.L.C. The user assumes the entire risk related to its use of information on ISCIENCES, L.L.C. Web pages, including information derived from Water Security Indicators Model (WSIM). This information may include forecasts, projections and other predictive statements that represent ISCIENCES, L.L.C.’s assumptions and expectations in light of currently available information and using the highest professional standards. Actual results may differ from those projected. Consequently, no guarantee is presented or implied as to the accuracy of specific forecasts, projections or predictive statements contained herein. ISCIENCES, L.L.C. provides such information "as is," and disclaims any and all warranties, whether express or implied, including (without limitation) any implied warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose. In no event will ISCIENCES, L.L.C. be liable to you or to any third party for any direct, indirect, incidental, consequential, special or exemplary damages or lost profit resulting from any use or misuse of this data.