Modeling Climate Change Impacts on Water Resources

by Brian Hurd,
Paul Kirshen,
Mac Callaway,



Abstract: As part of the Electric Power Research Institute's (EPRI) comprehensive evaluation of the economic effects of climate change in the United States, we have developed methods to analyze climate change impacts on water resources. These methods use economic, spatial equilibrium (SE) models, that simulate the movement and storage of water within a basin and describe important physical and economic relationships. The models use hydrologic data, simulating the effects of climate change on runoff, to simulate the effects of climate change on economic welfare, water use patterns, and reservoir storage for four important river basins: Colorado, Missouri, Delaware, and Apalachicola-Flint-Chattahoochee. This paper describes the economic concepts which underlie river basin SE models, and describes their use in the assessment of climate change impacts.

Subject Headings: Climate change | Water resources | Hydrologic models | Economic factors | Water storage | Basins | Electric power | Hydro power | North America | United States | Delaware | Missouri | Colorado

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