Water deficits are expected to shrink and downgrade through February though intense deficits are forecast for Yemen’s western and eastern thirds and severe deficits in Saudi Arabia’s large south-central region of Riyadh. Surpluses will persist in western Iran north of the Red Sea and across the border into Iraq and will remain intense. Surpluses are also forecast along Iran’s western Caspian Sea coast; north of Kirkuk, Iraq; and in eastern Turkey.
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Through November extreme to exceptional deficits will dominate much of Saudi Arabia, southern and western Iraq, Kuwait, large pockets of southern Iran, Qatar, and United Arab Emirates. Primarily moderate deficits are forecast for the Levant. Deficits of varying intensity are forecast for much of Turkey and will be severe in central Turkey, along its northeastern coast, and through Georgia.
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.
Regions forecast to have significant water deficits for the 12-month period from February 2018 through January 2019 include: Brazil, southern Venezuela, Libya, Egypt, Gabon, Finland, Saudi Arabia, and Afghanistan. Areas with a forecast of significant water surplus include: Idaho and western Montana (US), southeastern British Columbia (Canada), Tanzania, Kenya, Spain, Hungary, southern Romania, and eastern Ukraine. This Watch List is based on ISciences Water Security Indicator Model (WSIM) run on 9 May 2018.
The forecast through June indicates that deficits will diminish and downgrade in the South Atlantic States, retreat considerably in the Gulf States, downgrade to moderate in the Southern Plains States, persist with intensity in the Southwest, and shrink in central California. Surpluses are forecast for Idaho, Montana, western Wyoming, Nebraska, South Dakota, Iowa, Missouri, and along the Missouri and Yellowstone Rivers. Surpluses will be exceptional in Idaho and Montana. Surpluses in the Ohio River Valley will diminish. After June, anomalies will downgrade, but persist.
Water surpluses will continue to emerge in southern Michigan and the Ohio River Valley. Exceptional surplus is expected on the Missouri River, western Montana, Idaho, and Washington. Intense deficits will continue in the West and Southwest. Moderate deficits are forecast for Oregon, Kansas, western Oklahoma, and most of Texas west of the Brazos River, with severe conditions in the Panhandle. Missouri, Arkansas, Louisiana, and Mississippi will transition out of deficit, with moderate surplus emerging in Arkansas into surrounding states. Deficits in the Mid-Atlantic States will shrink.
Widespread exceptional deficits are expected to moderate considerably through March, but intense deficits will continue to emerge in southeastern Turkey, Syria, Jordan, northern Saudi Arabia, and Iraq. Moderate to severe deficits are forecast throughout Iran. Deficits in Qatar, UAE, and Yemen will downgrade to primarily moderate. After March, deficits on the Arabian Peninsula are expected to resume prior intensity and deficits will emerge throughout Turkey and in nearby Georgia, Armenia, and Azerbaijan, completing a picture of deficits blanketing the entire Middle East.
The near-term forecast indicates exceptional deficits in the Lower Mississippi Valley and deficits nearly as intense through the South Atlantic States. Widespread moderate deficits are forecast from southern California through eastern Texas, with severe deficits near Houston. Moderate surpluses are forecast in the Great Lakes, and intense surpluses are forecast for eastern Nebraska, central Minnesota, and southeastern Idaho. After February deficits in the Lower Mississippi Valley and the South Atlantic State will moderate, deficits will spread in California, and widespread surpluses will emerge in the Northwest and along the Columbia, Missouri, and Yellowstone Rivers.
The near-term forecast through January indicates several striking changes from the prior three months: a transition in the Gulf Coast from water surplus to deficit, a broad path of deficits in the South Atlantic States, and surpluses from the Upper Midwest through the Ohio River Valley into the Northeast. In the spring normal water conditions should return to the Ohio River Valley and the Northeast, surpluses will continue to emerge in the Upper Mississippi, and deficits will moderate in the Lower Mississippi, Texas, and the South Atlantic States.
The near-term forecast through November indicates a significant retreat of exceptional deficits on the Arabian Peninsula though deficits will continue to emerge, reaching south into much of Yemen and southern Oman. Deficits in the Levant will downgrade to moderate. Exceptional deficits in Iraq west of the Euphrates are expected to become slightly less intense except in the south. Deficits will emerge throughout much of the eastern two-thirds of Iran. After November exceptional deficits are forecast to nearly disappear though widespread deficits of lesser intensity will continue to emerge.