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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Tradeoff Analysis Between Economic Development and Climate Change Adaptation Strategies for River Nile Basin Water Resources

Authors
item Fathelrahman, Eihab
item ASCOUGH, JAMES
item GREEN, TIMOTHY
item Babiker, Mustafa -
item Strzepek, Kenneth -

Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: December 15, 2007
Publication Date: June 24, 2008
Citation: Fathelrahman, E.M., Ascough II, J.C., Green, T.R., Babiker, M.H., Strzepek, K.M. 2009. Tradeoff Analysis Between Economic Development and Climate Change Adaptation Strategies for River Nile Basin Water Resources. In: Taylor, R.,Tindimugaya, C., Owor, M., and Shamsudduha, M, editors. Groundwater and Climate in Africa (Proceedings of the Kampala Conference, June 2008). Wallingford, UK: IAHS Bood Publication 334. p. 257-269.

Interpretive Summary: The UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change briefings declared that the population in the Nile basin region (about 160 million, or 57% of the entire population of the basin’s 10 riparian countries (Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda) is at risk of water scarcity. Adjustments strategies in response to climate change would involve either changes in water allocation or structural adjustments in both the upper and lower basin management schemes. These strategies may contradict with existing economic development plans and strategies in this region. This research will use economic Input-Out (I-O) tables, Social Accounting Matrices, water balance information, and tradeoff analysis package created by the USDA Agricultural Systems Research Unit (ASRU) called ARSAT to analyze the tradeoff between economic development and environmental adaptations strategies in the Nile regions. This study will describe the nature and limitations of the tradeoff analysis, use existing projected climate change scenarios, and integrate the results of these scenarios to water balance including groundwater and economic consequences. These climate change scenarios will utilize selected models such as Geo-physical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL), United Kingdom Meteorological Office (UKMO), and the Goddard Institute of Space Studies (GISSA) to perform the analysis (Yates, and Strzepek, 1998), and analyze the links between climate changes, adaptation strategies, and economic impacts. This study will summarize impact on water balance due to the changes in precipitation, temperature, solar radiation and combinations of these climate variables on current water balance at selected Nile sub-basin zones and the economic implications in these selected Nile sub-basin regions. The selected Nile sub-basin regions include Upper White Nile, Sudd Swamps, Sobat basin, White Nile to Khartoum, Upper Blue Nile, Blue Nile and Atbra basin, and Aswan to Delta sub-basins. The tradeoff analysis will include variables such as Certainty Equivalent (CE) of the Net Present Value of the climate change adaptation strategies to measure their impacts, and use variables such as CE of the consumer and producer’s surpluses to measure the economic development programs impacts. Using CE is necessary to perform the tradeoff analysis on similar basis between economic development programs and climate change adaptation strategies. Then, this research will tabulate the tradeoff results, and provide information for use by others discussing possible policy implications for the decision making processes in the region.

Technical Abstract: Recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) briefings have declared that the growing population in the Nile river basin region (about 160 million, or 57% of the entire population of the basin’s ten riparian countries) is at risk of water scarcity. Adjustment strategies in response to climate change involve either changes in water allocation or structural adjustments in both the upper and lower basin management schemes. These potential strategies may contradict existing economic development plans in this region. General Circulation Models (GCMs) show widely diverging pictures of future river flows (from a 30% increase to a 78% decrease), and any reductions over 20% may result in major social and economic impacts. The large uncertainty in climate change projections makes it difficult for policy makers and basin managers to adopt any specific response policy. Furthermore, there is a significant lack of data collection on surface water runoff and groundwater discharge/recharge in the Nile basin countries despite research efforts in this area. Integration of climate change, water balance, and economic models contributes towards filling such large gaps of information. This research will use economic input-output (I-O) tables, social accounting matrices (SAMs), surface and groundwater hydrology information (e.g., groundwater discharge, recharge, storage; and surface runoff), and the USDA ARSAT (Agricultural Risk Screening and Analysis Tool) software program to analyze tradeoffs between economic development and environmental mitigation strategies in the Nile basin region. This study describes the nature and limitations of the tradeoff analysis, uses existing projected climate change scenarios, and integrates the results of these scenarios with hydrological information and economic consequences. Climate change modeling scenarios will be derived from the Geo-Physical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL), United Kingdom Meteorological Office (UKMO), and the Goddard Institute of Space Studies (GISSA) models. Specifically, this study summarizes surface and groundwater hydrology impacts due to changes in precipitation, temperature, solar radiation on selected Nile sub-basin zones and the economic implications in selected Nile sub-basin regions. The I-O tables, SAMs tables, and model-generated hydrological information will be used to quantify economic and environmental impacts due to existing and proposed development plans and projects on one hand and strategies for climate change adaptation on the other. The tradeoff analysis utilizes a stochastic dominance (stochastic efficiency with respect to a function) approach with economic (e.g., net present value of on-going and proposed development projects in the region) and environmental indicators (e.g., groundwater storage) to quantify impacts of climate change adaptation strategies versus economic development plans and projects in the Nile basin region. Finally, this research will tabulate the tradeoff results and provide information for use by others discussing possible implications for policy and the decision-making processes at regional and sub-regional levels.

Last Modified: 9/29/2014
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