15 October 2018

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

United States: The forecast through December indicates many areas of water surplus including Iowa and surrounding states, the Ohio River Basin, eastern Pennsylvania, and Texas. Surpluses will be intense in Iowa and Pennsylvania. Deficits are expected in the Southeast, primarily moderate but more intense in Florida surrounding Lake Okeechobee. Intense deficits are also forecast along the Arkansas River, and in Colorado, and north-central Utah. Other areas of deficit include the Canadian River, the Rio Grande through New Mexico, and Maine.

Canada: Through December, exceptional water deficits in the east will shrink somewhat, and moderate to severe surpluses will emerge in much of northern Ontario with intense deficits in the northwest. Deficits will diminish considerably in the southern portions of the Prairie Provinces, though moderate deficits will linger in southern Manitoba and will emerge along the North Saskatchewan River. Elsewhere in the west the pattern of anomalies will remain much the same as in the prior three months.

Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean: The forecast through December indicates pockets of intense water deficit in Mexican states along the southern Gulf of Mexico and across to the Pacific. Moderate deficits are forecast for Yucatan and Mexico’s southern Pacific coast. Surpluses will persist in Coahuila, and will increase in northern Sinaloa, western Chihuahua, and from Zacatecas through Mexico City. Surpluses are expected in eastern Guatemala and eastern Costa Rica. Deficits in Cuba will moderate.

South America: The extent of exceptional water deficit in the region will diminish considerably through December, though deficits will cover most of Brazil and will be intense across the north, in Mato Grosso, São Paulo, and Paraná. Intense deficits are also forecast in Bolivia from east of La Paz through Cochabamba to the south, and from southern Peru through the Atacama Desert in northern Chile past Santiago. Surpluses will persist in Uruguay, and in Entre Rios and Buenos Aires Provinces in Argentina, and will emerge in Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil.

Europe: Moderate deficits will dominate much of Europe from through December, downgrading from prior exceptional deficits in many areas. Severe to extreme deficits are, however, forecast for southern Sweden, central Finland, southern France, Switzerland, and southern Germany. Norway is expected to transition from exceptional deficit to moderate surplus or normal conditions. Moderate surpluses are also forecast in Scotland and extreme surpluses in west-central Sweden. Surpluses of varying intensity are forecast for European Russia and eastern Ukraine.

Africa: The forecast through December indicates that intense deficits will shrink considerably across northern Africa but emerge across the southern Sahara and into the Sahel. Intense deficits are forecast for the Nile River and western Ethiopia. Mild deficits are forecast for much of Africa’s southern half. Areas of surplus include southern Mali, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Burkina Faso, Ghana, coastal and northeastern Nigeria, south-central Chad, Republic of the Congo, Tanzania, and southern Kenya.

Middle East: Water deficits are expected to shrink and downgrade significantly through December but intense deficits will persist in southern Iraq. Severe deficits are forecast for Georgia, Kuwait, most of Saudi Arabia, and into western United Arab Emirates. Deficits of varying severity are expected in Yemen, moderate to severe deficits in central and southern Iran, and mild deficits in the Levant.

Central Asia and Russia: The forecast through December indicates that prior exceptional water deficits in Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, western Kazakhstan, and the North Caucasus region will downgrade considerably, leaving primarily mild conditions. In Russia, surpluses will increase between the Ob and Yenisei Rivers and will be extreme to exceptional. Moderate deficits are forecast in the southern Ural Mountains, with surpluses to the west. Surpluses will re-emerge in the Upper Don River watershed.

South Asia: The widespread exceptional water deficits that have dominated Afghanistan in recent months will moderate through December though deficits will remain more intense northeast of Kabul. Moderate deficits are forecast for southern Pakistan. In India, deficits will also moderate but will be intense along the Tungabhadra River in the southwest, and in Madhya Pradesh, Bihar, and Arunachal Pradesh. Areas of surplus include northernmost India, Uttar Pradesh, Nepal, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka.

Southeast Asia and the Pacific: The forecast through December indicates that water surpluses will shrink but intense surpluses are forecast for western Myanmar, northern Laos, and northern Vietnam. Exceptional deficits will persist in western Cambodia. Deficits will increase in Thailand and will emerge in eastern and southern Sumatra and on smaller islands in the region. Philippines will transition from surplus to deficit. Deficits in Papua New Guinea, though downgrading, will remain severe.

East Asia: Widespread water surpluses will emerge south of the Yangtze River and in the Pearl River watershed over the next few months and may persist through March. Surpluses are also forecast for Sichuan, Qinghai, and Tibet and may persist even longer. Deficits will increase and intensify from western Inner Mongolia through Xinjiang, and moderate to severe deficits will emerge from the North China Plain to the Yangtze River. Extreme surpluses are forecast for southern Japan, and deficits for southern North Korea.

Australia & New Zealand: The forecast through December indicates that intense water deficits which have dominated much of Australia in prior months will retreat from most regions except the southeast. Deficits will be exceptional in Tasmania, and severe to exceptional along the southeast coast from Adelaide through Victoria and past Canberra. Moderate to severe deficits are forecast for New Zealand. Deficits in New Caledonia will moderate.

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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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