Desafío

Las cuencas hidrográficas son la unidad básica de gestión de los recursos hídricos. Con la intensificación del uso del agua, el cambio climático y los cambios en el uso del suelo, lograr una gestión sostenible del agua en la escala de la cuenca del río se está volviendo cada vez más desafiante.

El agua debe asignarse entre diferentes sectores y usuarios, como la agricultura, la industria, la población a través del suministro de agua potable, la generación de energía, y el mantenimiento de los ecosistemas naturales. Para lograr esto, se deben implementar planes a escala de cuenca para la distribución de agua y la priorización de los usos del agua en condiciones de escasez hídrica. Es necesario tener en cuenta una serie de cuestiones ambientales, sociales y políticas para lograr un suministro de agua de calidad aceptable en cada sector y momento. Dado que las demandas de agua ya exceden la disponibilidad en muchas regiones, se espera que los cambios en los patrones climáticos (que a menudo conducen a sequías prolongadas y eventos de lluvia más extremos) exacerben aún más el grado de complejidad al que deben de enfrentarse los tomadores de decisiones.

Los gobiernos nacionales, las autoridades de gestión de las cuencas hidrográficas (incluidas las transfronterizas), las juntas regionales de agua y las ONGs requieren cada vez más herramientas de apoyo para la toma de decisiones y asesoramiento que aborden los problemas relacionados con el balance entre demandas y disponibilidad hídrica, y su asignación óptima entre los usuarios de cuenca en el corto y largo plazo.

Enfoque FutureWater

FutureWater tiene experiencia en proporcionar soluciones para la gestión sostenible del agua a escala de cuenca hidrográfica.  Nuestros proyectos se gestionan a través de la cooperación y la participación con las partes interesadas (ejemplo, gobiernos, administradores y gestores del agua, y usuarios) para garantizar la absorción del conocimiento local en nuestros sistemas de apoyo a las decisiones e informes de consultoría. Al emplear expertos internacionales, líderes en los campos de gestión de recursos hídricos e hidrología, FutureWater puede ayudar a los clientes de varias maneras:

Disponibilidad de agua en toda la cuenca bajo condiciones cambiantes

FutureWater utiliza una variedad de herramientas y modelos de simulación diseñados para la evaluación cuantitativa de la disponibilidad de agua en diferentes escalas espaciales. Estas herramientas se implementan para evaluaciones de línea de base, así como análisis de escenarios, con el fin de evaluar una gama de proyecciones futuras (clima, demografía, uso de la tierra, desarrollo de recursos hídricos) que permitan al tomador de decisiones anticipar las condiciones futuras y ajustar sus estrategias de adaptación. Para la generación de escenarios y el análisis de impactos, FutureWater utiliza herramientas big data que permiten el procesamiento rápido y eficaz de grandes volúmenes de datos, y la generación de resultados comprensibles e intuitivos. Los escenarios generalmente se desarrollan en estrecha colaboración con los clientes y otras partes interesadas relevantes en la cuenca.

Optimización de la planificación de la cuenca fluvial y la asignación de agua

Para fines de planificación de cuencas hidrográficas, es esencial relacionar la disponibilidad de agua con la demanda de agua en el espacio y el tiempo. Se deben definir reglas óptimas de asignación de agua para lograr políticas de gestión del agua que sean resistentes a los patrones cambiantes tanto en la oferta como en la demanda. Esto se relaciona tanto con el uso humano del agua como con los requisitos de flujo ambiental. Al trabajar con herramientas de optimización de asignación de agua bien establecidas, FutureWater apoya a gobiernos y organizaciones de cuencas hidrográficas en la formulación de políticas de asignación de agua e identificando oportunidades para un mayor desarrollo sostenible de recursos hídricos. Por lo general, los modelos de apoyo a la decisión basados en conceptos se combinan con modelos de disponibilidad de recursos hídricos físicamente más avanzados (ver arriba), para proporcionar una imagen completa y precisa de los procesos que ocurren a nivel de la cuenca.

Planificación integrada basada en el nexo agua-alimentos-energía-ecosistemas

En el contexto de cuencas hidrográficas complejas, el análisis solitario de los los flujos de agua no resulta suficiente para lograr una gestión sostenible de los recursos hídricos. FutureWater tiene muchos años de experiencia en el desarrollo y aplicación de herramientas para la evaluación espacio-temporal de la producción de cultivos, el potencial de energía hidroeléctrica y una gama de servicios ecosistémicos relacionados con el agua. Al proporcionar información sobre los beneficios que se pueden obtener de los recursos hídricos de la cuenca en diferentes escenarios, FutureWater permite a los tomadores de decisiones disponer de una visión más cercana y precisa del nexo entre la funcionalidad de los ecosistemas, y la generación de alimentos y energía.

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    This study investigated if the possibility for upstream water retention would increase significantly with the construction of a controllable weir in the Olstertoch river. The input data and results of a previous water retention suitability analysis were evaluated and compared to expert knowledge. The methodology of the previous suitability analysis…

  • Determination of surface water evaporation

    In this project the suitability of five methods for calculating surface water evaporation was evaluated for the province of Friesland.

  • Green Water Credits Mechanism to support sustainable water use in Africa

    Green Water Credits can be seen as an investment mechanism for upstream farmers to practice soil and water management activities that generate benefits for downstream water users, which are currently unrecognized and unrewarded. FutureWater coordinated and carried out the biophysical assessment that quantified the impact of Green Water Credits practices…

  • Remote Sensing and Hydrological Modelling of the Rio Bravo, Aguascalientes and Central Northern Valleys

    The project has shown how modern analytical tools such Remote Sensing, GIS and simulation models can help to swiftly obtain data to support the water management decision making process. A diagnosis of the Rio Bravo and Northern Central Aquifers has been made to demonstrate management options as well as how…