15 May 2018

This map presents a selection of regions likely to encounter significant water anomalies during the one year period beginning in February 2018 and running through January 2019 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 May 15, 2018 (pdf).

United States: Intense water surpluses in the Ohio River Valley and the Lower Mississippi Basin will retreat considerably. Surpluses in western Montana and northern Idaho will remain intense. Exceptional deficits will persist in Utah and increase in southwest Colorado, but deficits in surrounding states will moderate. On the East Coast deficits will retreat, except in South Carolina and Georgia. Southern Florida will transition from deficit to surplus. Moderate deficits are forecast for Nebraska, eastern North Dakota, Minnesota, and northern Wisconsin.

Canada: Two transitions stand out in the near-term forecast:  a change from water surplus to deficit in northern Quebec, and the emergence of widespread, exceptional surpluses in southeastern British Columbia. Deficits will diminish overall but are forecast along Ontario’s eastern border; in northeastern Manitoba and north of Lake Winnipeg; in northwest Alberta and north and west of Edmonton; around Prince George, BC, and in northwest BC. Surpluses will emerge in eastern Quebec near the mouth of the St. Lawrence River, and will increase along the northern border of Alberta and Saskatchewan.

Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean: In the next few months water deficits in Baja will downgrade somewhat. Moderate deficits are forecast for Chihuahua, Coahuila, Tamaulipas, central Mexico, and along the Gulf from Veracruz into Yucatan. Surpluses in Central America will shrink considerably. Intense surpluses are forecast for Jamaica; deficits are forecast for Haiti and Dominican Republic. After July, intense deficits will emerge in southern Mexico and northern Central America.

South America: Water deficits will diminish somewhat in South America over the next several months, but large pockets of exceptional deficit are forecast for Brazil in Acre, Rondônia, Pará, Maranhão, Tocantins, Goiás, western Minas Gerais, northern Mato Grosso do Sul, and São Paolo. Intense deficits are also forecast for: southeastern Venezuela; southernmost Ecuador; along a path from Lima, Peru through northern Chile; southern Bolivia; and Tierra del Fuego. Deficits in the Argentine Pampas will downgrade but remain severe.

Europe: Water surpluses will retreat in Central Europe and the Balkans as deficits emerge. Deficits are also forecast for Northern Europe with exceptional deficits in Finland, Estonia, and Latvia. Intense surpluses are forecast for Hungary and for eastern Ukraine into Russia, with both deficits and surpluses in European Russia. Surpluses will persist on the Iberian Peninsula but retreat in France, with deficits emerging in Auvergne. Moderate surpluses will persist in Ireland, England, and Normandy.

Africa: The forecast through July indicates that exceptional water deficits across northern Africa will diminish, but intense deficits will persist in Libya, Niger, Egypt, and Sudan. Deficits will downgrade in Gabon and southern DRC but remain severe. Deficits will persist in western Zambia and are expected to be extreme on the Kafue River. Relatively mild deficits are forecast for southern Africa. Intense surpluses will persist in Tanzania, Kenya, northern Uganda, and northern Madagascar.

Middle East: Over the next few months exceptional water deficits will diminish overall in the region but persist in southern Iraq, Kuwait, northern Saudi Arabia, and Iran near the Strait of Hormuz. Deficits will spread in Turkey, and intense deficits will emerge in Gaza, Israel, West Bank, and Lebanon. After July, deficits in Turkey will moderate overall, but deficits of varying severity are forecast for many parts of the region and are expected to be especially intense in Saudi Arabia, southern Iraq, Kuwait, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, southern Iran, and West Bank.

Central Asia and Russia: Through July, water surpluses will shrink in European Russia. The Lower Ob will transition from surplus to mild deficit, moderate to exceptional deficits will develop in the Middle Ob region, and surpluses in the Upper Ob region will downgrade. Surpluses will downgrade in the Tom River Basin, upgrade on the Ishim River, and persist on the Irtysh. Intense surpluses are forecast for northern Kazakhstan. Deficits are forecast for Turkmenistan, eastern Uzbekistan, southern Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan, and may be severe along the Amu Darya and Zaravshan Rivers.

South Asia: Exceptional water deficits will remain widespread in Afghanistan, while decreasing slightly. Deficits in Pakistan will generally moderate. India will transition from widespread water deficits to milder conditions. However, exceptional deficits are forecast surrounding Chandigarh, moderate deficits in Rajasthan, and intense deficits in the Far Northeast. Surpluses are expected in Jammu and Kashmir, northern Odisha, West Bengal, and along the Tapi River. Intense surpluses are forecast for the Gandaki River in Nepal. Moderate to extreme surpluses are forecast for northern Bangladesh.

Southeast Asia and the Pacific: The forecast indicates a transition away from water surplus to deficit. Moderate deficits are forecast for northern Cambodia, southern Vietnam, northern Luzon, and pockets of Sumatra and Java. More intense deficits are forecast for peninsular Thailand and Malaysia, eastern Papua New Guinea, western Timor Leste, and West Nusa Tengara. Surpluses are expected in north-central Vietnam, northern Borneo, northern Sumatra, central Philippines, North Sulawesi, East Nusa Tengara, and Pulau Sumba.

East Asia: The extent of exceptional water deficits in Mongolia, Inner Mongolia, and Xinjiang will diminish considerably though widespread deficits of varying severity are expected. Moderate to severe deficits will increase in Northeast China. Moderate surpluses are forecast for much of the Yellow River. Exceptional surpluses in eastern Qinghai will begin to moderate, and surpluses in the Yangtze River Basin will diminish and downgrade. Though exceptional deficits will shrink in Southeast China, intense deficits are forecast. Deficits will downgrade in North Korea, and moderate surpluses will expand in South Korea.

AustraliaExceptional water deficits that have dominated southern Australia are expected to disappear, but deficits are forecast for northern Australia, the southwest, the southeast, and Tasmania. These deficits may be intense in Tasmania and in pockets of other aforementioned areas. Moderate deficits are expected along the Darling, Lachlan, and Macquarie Rivers in New South Wales. Surpluses will shrink but persist in the Mackenzie River region of Queensland and in southwest Kimberley region of Western Australia.

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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.

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