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Journal Article

Synergies and Trade-Offs in Water Resources Management in the Bafing Watershed under Climate Change


Sambou,  Mame Henriette Astou
External Organizations;


Liersch,  Stefan
Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research;


Koch,  Hagen
Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research;

Vissin,  Expédit Wilfrid
External Organizations;

Albergel,  Jean
External Organizations;

Sane,  Moussé Landing
External Organizations;

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Sambou, M. H. A., Liersch, S., Koch, H., Vissin, E. W., Albergel, J., Sane, M. L. (2023): Synergies and Trade-Offs in Water Resources Management in the Bafing Watershed under Climate Change. - Water, 15, 11, 2067.

Cite as: https://publications.pik-potsdam.de/pubman/item/item_28482
Hydropower is the world’s largest and most widely used renewable energy source. It is expected that climate and land use changes, as well as hydraulic engineering measures, will have profound impacts on future hydropower potential. In this study, the hydropower potential of the Bafing watershed was estimated for the near future (P1: 2035–2065) and the far future (P2: 2065–2095). For this purpose, the moderate scenario ssp 126 and the medium–high scenario ssp 370 were used to explore possible climate impacts. In three management scenarios, we tested the interaction of the existing Manantali Dam with two planned dams (Koukoutamba and Boureya) using an ecohydrological water management model. The results show that, under ssp 126, a 6% increase in annual river flow would result in a 3% increase in hydropower potential in the near future compared with the historical period of 1984–2014. In the far future, the annual river flow would decrease by 6%, resulting in an 8% decrease in hydropower potential. Under ssp 370, the hydropower potential would decrease by 0.7% and 14% in the near and far future, respectively. The investment in the planned dams has benefits, such as an increase in hydropower potential and improved flood protection. However, the dams will be negatively affected by climate change in the future (except in the near future (P1) under ssp 126), and their operation will result in hydropower potential losses of about 11% at the Manantali Dam. Therefore, to mitigate the effects of climate change and adjust the operation of the three dams, it is essential to develop new adaptation measures through an optimization program or an energy mix combining hydro, solar, and wind power.