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Evaluation of water dynamic of eastern Crete in climate change scenarios using the HYDRONOMEAS software

Retsa Anna

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Year 2016
Type of Item Diploma Work
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The present thesis assesses the potential of the water resources system for eastern Crete, for various scenarios of climate change, using the HYDRONOMEAS software. Of the plethora of climate models and future scenarios developed for understanding and evaluating the impact of climate change on the meteorological and hydrological parameters, the present study uses 4 Regional Climatic Models (RCMs), at 2 different Representative Concentration Pathways (RCP 4.5 and RCP 8.5). Eastern Crete has been considered as the study area, being an area sensitive to the impacts of climate change. Impacts are both natural, concerning the lower rainfalls and the less water resources compared to western Crete, and anthropogenic, concerning the high irrigation needs and the high public water supply needs as this area includes the city of Heraklion.The study methodology has the following steps: First, schematization of the hydrosystem was done, i.e., the transformation of the components of the original system to the component of the HYDRONOMEAS model that represents the original system. Schematization is based on the water management prototype of Crete developed by Region of Crete in the water management model RIBASIM (River Basin Simulation Model). This step is followed by entry of input data: the features of the components and the time series of water inflows in the network as well as inflows and spills of the reservoirs. The development of the model is concluded by the definition of the targets and operational determinations. Targets concern the water demands (irrigation and public water supply) and the assurance of a minimum river flow during droughts (ecological supply).The simulation of the original system operation is first conducted for the historical period (1978-1996) with observation data ∙ then the results were compared to the results deriving from the simulation conducted with the data of the four climate models for the same period. The good correlation found between the results, allowed the safe continuation to the following steps without the need to adjust the climate data of the models. Consequently, adjustment to the future state of specific system data was made (inflows in the network and water needs) and, at the end, simulation of the system operation was made for the two scenarios of climate change contemplated in this study: RCP4.5 @ +2oC SSP3 for period 2037-2066 and RCP8.5 @ +2oC SSP3 for period 2026-2055.The results of the study of climate change impacts on the system show comparisons both between the climate change scenarios and the historical period. The main conclusions include the resulting high water deficit and the increased system failure. Based on the conclusions of this study, suggestions are made pertaining to the correct water management to reduce the impacts of climate change as well as suggestions for further research.

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