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Community Water

New Mexico Water Budget Model Enhanced to Include Future Scenarios (continued)

With the updated structural changes, the future portion of the model is able to incorporate scenario inputs. The three preliminary inputs that have been developed are:

  1. Climate Change
  2. Population Growth
  3. Efficiency

Climate change is the main driver of the model moving forward. It incorporates four separate climate emission scenarios based on three Global Circulation Model (GCM) runs. This scenario provides the precipitation, surface water flows, and temperature for the future portion of the model. Population growth can be altered from the predicted population change to determine the effects of public and domestic water use. The efficiency metrics allow for a change in either agricultural efficiency or human use efficiency again to examine the impacts of water use on the overall water budget at different spatial resolutions. These scenarios allow a user to create a specific future scenario based on a combination of parameters that are of interest.

The preliminary future scenario tool was presented to the Interstate Stream Commission on March 17, 2017 to showcase how the NMDSWB can be used as a tool for water planners, users, and scientists in New Mexico. The NMDSWB is still in development, continuing to improve on these current scenarios, integrating other research from the SWA, and incorporating new scenarios. The online web model that runs the historic water budget model is being enhanced to include the new future NMDSWB model and corresponding scenarios.

Project collaborators include Jesse Roach (PE, PhD) and Ken Peterson (MS), Tetra Tech Inc.; Bruce Thomson (PhD), UNM; Vince Tidwell (PhD), Sandia National Laboratories, and Joshua Randall (MS), NM WRRI, and Austin Hanson (BS), NM WRRI.