Climate Change Impacts the Water Highway project in Morocco

Title Climate Change Impacts the Water Highway project in Morocco
Publication Type Journal Article
Year of Publication 2020
Authors El Mocayd, N., Kang, S. & Eltahir, E.A.B.
Journal Hydrology and Earth System Sciences
Volume 24
Date Published March 2020
Abstract hydrology of Morocco is characterized by significant spatial variability. Precipitation follows a sharp gradient, decreasing from the north to the south. In order to redistribute the available water, a project has been proposed to transfer 860×106 m3yr−1 from the wet north to the arid southern regions, namely the “Water Highway” project. The present study aims to address the viability of the project after accounting for the impacts of climate change in the watersheds located in the north. We perform regional climate model (RCM) simulations over the study region using boundary conditions from five different global circulation models (GCMs) and assuming two different emissions scenarios – RCP4.5 (with mitigation) and RCP8.5 (business as usual). The impact on precipitation and temperature are assessed, and the decrease in the available water quantity is estimated. Under RCP8.5, the project is likely not feasible. However, under the RCP4.5, a rescaled version of this project may be feasible depending on how much water is allocated to satisfy the local water demand in the north.

DOI 10.5194/hess-24-1467-2020
Relevant Projects:
Future Water Scenarios for Morocco
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