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Impact of Climate Change on Water Resources

of Nepal and Role of WECS

Gautam Rajkarnikar
Project Coordinator, Koshi River Basin Management Program
Water and Energy Commission Secretariat
Government of Nepal
E mail: pinku_gautam@hotmail.com
WEPA Dialogue in Nepal
14 December 2010
Kathmanu, Nepal
Outlines of Presentation
Brief Introduction of Water and Energy Commission
Secretariat ( WECS )
Country background
Water sector Scenario
Temperature and Precipitation Trend
Glacier Scenario
Case study
Result
Conclusion
Water and Energy Commission (WEC) and its
Secretariat (WECS)

The Water and Energy Commission (WEC) was established by


Govt.of Nepal in 1975 with the objective of developing the
water and energy resources in an integrated and accelerated
manner. Consequently, a permanent secretariat of WEC was
established in 1981 and was given the name, Water and
Energy Commission Secretariat (WECS).
The primary responsibility of WECS is to assist Govt. of Nepal,
the Ministry of Energy and other related agencies in the
formulation of policies and planning of projects in the water
and energy resources sector. This also works as central water
planning unit of Govt.of Nepal. The objectives and mandates
of WEC and WECS have been revised and modified a number
of times since their establishment.
Composition of Water and Energy Commission
The composition of the Water and Energy Commission is as follows:

Minister for Energy - Chairperson


Members
Member, National Planning Commission(Water Resources)
Secretary, Ministry of Water Resources
Secretary, Ministry of Finance
Secretary, Ministry of Physical Planning and Works
Secretary, Ministry of Industry
Secretary, Ministry of Commerce and Supplies
Secretary, Ministry of Law, Jusice and Parliamentary Affairs
Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperative
Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs - Member
Secretary, Ministry of Environment
Secretary , Ministry of Science and Technology
Composition of Water and Energy Commission
Contd..
Secretary, Ministry of Forest and Soil conservation
Secretary, Ministry of Local Development
Two persons nominated by Government from known water resources and
energy specialist from non-Government sector -
Dean Institute of Engineering, Tribhuvan University
President Nepal Engineers' Association
Representative, Federation of Nepalese Chamber of commerce and Industry
Secretary, Water and Energy Commission Secretariat- Member Secretary

WECS is now looking for a new partner to take on the emerging challenges
together in the area of water and energy sector planning and policy
formulation
Objectives of the WECS
To provide assistance to the concerned ministries in formulating
policies and objectives to be included in the perspective/periodic
plan relating to the water resources and energy sector.
To provide suggestions, recommendations and guidance with
regard to the multipurpose (mega and medium scale only)
projects development as well as to irrigation, hydropower,
drinking water, industrial use of water, flood management and
water navigation; and also regarding the promotion and
development of such mega and medium scale projects, and
protection of environmental aspects relating to the above
sectors.
To formulate policies and strategies with regard to the water
resources and energy sector.
To render opinion, advice and recommendations on bilateral and
multilateral issues relating to water resources and energy.
The Mandate of WECS
To formulate necessary policies and strategies for conducting
study, research, survey and analysis on various aspects of
water resources and energy development in keeping with the
priorities and targets of GON.
To enact the necessary laws pertaining to the development of
water resources and energy.
To establish coordination among national and sectoral policies
relating to water resources and energy sector.
Identify the viable power projects and make an analysis of
bilateral and multilateral projects relating to the development
of water resources and energy.
Location of Nepal
Hydro-physiology of Nepal in Brief
There are more than 6000 rivers and lakes within the
territory of Nepal
Total drainage area: 194,471 km2
Three Class of Rivers: Snow fed, Rain fed and Seasonal
Annual surface flow 225 billion m3
High altitude variation from 60 m in Terai (Jhapa) to
7,500 m in high Himalayas within a span of 200 m in
average.
High Temporal variation (time) of annual rainfall, i.e.,
20% of total annual rainfall from October to May (8
months) and 80% from June to September (4 months).

9
Physiography

Trans Himalaya Legen

C H I NA

Kanjuroba
Annapurna High
Langtang
Mt Everest Himalaya
Kathmandu

Simara Midlands

Mahabharat Range

Terai Siwalik Range


10
Annual Mean Temperature C

30

29

28

27
- 18 -12 -6 0 6 9 15 21 27

80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88
11
Map of Glaciers and Glacier Lakes Distribution

ICIMOD/UNEP (2000)
Water Sector Scenario

Nepal has 225 billion cubic meters of water available


annually.
About 15 billion cubic meters has been used for
economic and social activities.
About 10% of total precipitation falls as snow( UNEP,
2001)
About 23% of total areas of Nepal lie above
permanent snowline of 5000m( MOPE, 2004)
About 3.6% of total areas are covered by glaciers.
Water Sector Scenario contd..

30% of the global glaciers


3,252 glaciers covering an area of 5,323 sq. km
2,323 identified glacial lakes covering an area
of 75.7 sq. km
Water Balance of Major River Basin
Climate Change
The United Nations Framework Convention on
Climate Change (UNFCCC), in its Article 1, defines
climate change as: a change of climate which
is attributed directly or indirectly to human
activity that alters the composition of the global
atmosphere and which is in addition to natural
climate variability observed over comparable
time periods .
Temperature Trend in Nepal

IPCC AR4 projects the global temperature to


rise by 1.1 to 6.4 degrees celsius, in an
average 1.8 to 4 degree celsius
Analysis of 32 years observed data (1975
2006) in Nepal shows a temperature increase
of 1.8 degrees celsius
Temperature Trends
patial Distribution of max. Temperature Trends
Langtang (3920 m a.s.l.)

0.00

82 84 86 88
Longitude ( oE)

-0.09 -0.05 0.00 0.05 0.09 R e g io n al M e a n T e m p e ra t u r e T ren d s f o r t h e p e ri o d 1 9 7 7 - 9 4 ( C p e r y e a r)

Color Coding of tem perature trends S ea s o n a l A n n u al

( o C year -1 ) R e g i o n s W i n ter P re -m o n so o n M onsoon P o s t -m o n so o n Jan


D ec - Fe b M ar -M ay J u n -S ep O c t -N o v

T ra n s -H im al ay a 0 .1 2 0.01 0.11 0.10 0.09


H i m al a y a 0 .0 9 0.05 0.06 0.08 0.06
M i d d le M o u n ta i n s 0 .0 6 0.05 0.06 0.09 0.08
S i w a lik 0 .0 2 0.01 0.02 0.08 0.04
T er a i 0 .0 1 0.00 0.01 0.07 0.04
Precipitation All-Nepal All-Nepal Smoothed
3
2 a) All-Nepal
1
0
-1
-2
-3
1950 1960 1970 1980 1990
3 3
2 b) Himalaya W 2
c) Himalaya E
1 1
0 0
-1 -1
-2 -2
-3 -3
1960 1970 1980 1990 1960 1970 1980 1990
3 3
2 d) Middle Mountain W 2
e) Middle Mountain E
1 1
0 0
-1 -1
-2 -2
-3 -3
1960 1970 1980 1990 1960 1970 1980 1990
3 3
2 f) Terai/Siwalik W g) Terai/Siwalik E
2
1 1
0 0
-1 -1
-2 -2
-3 -3
1960 1970 1980 1990 1960 1970 1980 1990
Years Years

Not trends, only oscillations


Hydrometeorological observations
across Nepal

Annual Mean Temperature for Nepal, 1961-96

21.00
y = 0.0697x + 17.92
R2 = 0.7483;
Temperature (deg C)

n = 119; 72 < h (m) < 4100


20.00

19.00

18.00

17.00
1961 1963 1965 1967 1969 1971 1973 1975 1977 1979 1981 1983 1985 1987 1989 1991 1993 1995

Year
Hydrometeorological observations
across Nepal

Annual MeanTemperature from


high elevation gauges in Nepal, 1976-96

18
y = 0.1076x + 14.664
17 R2 = 0.7849;
n = 15; 1800 < h (m) < 4100
Temperature (deg C)

17

16

16

15

15

14
1976 1978 1980 1982 1984 1986 1988 1990 1992 1994 1996

Year
Retreat of the Khumbu glacier
Retreat of the Lirung glacier

2003

Lower, debris covered, part


is detached from the upper
part and has become a
mass of dead ice, which is
degrading rapidly, with
rapid surface lowering,
terminus retreat and
ponding in front.
Past GLOF in Nepal
No Date River Basin Name of Lake

1 450 years ago Seti Khola Machhapuchhare

2 August 1935 Sun Koshi Taraco, Tibet

3 Sept. 21, 1964 Arun Gelaipco, Tibet

4 Sun Koshi Zhangzangbo, Tibet

5 1964 Trishuli Longda, Tibet

6 1968 Arun Ayaco, Tibet

7 1969 Arun Ayaco, Tibet

Source: WECS 1998; DHM; ICIMOD


Past GLOF in Nepal contd.
No. Date Basin Lake

8 1970 Arun Ayaco, Tibet

9 Sep. 3, 1977 Dudh Koshi Nare Tibet

10 June 23, 1980 Tamur Nagma Pokhari,


Nepal
11 July 11, 1981 Sun Koshi Zhangzangbo

12 August 27, 1982 Arun Jinco, Tibet

13 August 4, 1985 Dudh Koshi Dig Tsho

14 July 12, 1991 Tama Koshi Chubung

15 Sep. 3, 1998 Dudh Koshi Tam Pokhari


Source: WECS 1998; DHM; ICIMOD
Retreating Process of Nepalese Glaciers
Imja Lake
Tsho Rolpa Lake
Glaciers are the Water Tower of Asia and provide
hydrological resource to 1.3 Billion people.
- Himalayan glaciers represent the largest snow cover region on the
Earths surface outside the poles and make the headwater to major rivers
Ganges
- Particularly important for snow/glacier cover is the western Himalayan
region.
Himalayas govern the climate of Asia and
significantly influence the onset and strength of the
South Asian Summer Monsoon.
- The Indian monsoon accounts for over 70% of the annual rainfall and is
directly influenced by the pre-monsoon elevated heating over the
Himalayas-Tibetan Plateau and the subsequent land-sea thermal gradient.
Impact of Climate Change on Water
Resource

Specific case of Gandaki River


Basin
Hydrological features of Gandaki River Basin

Catchment Area : 30,090 km2


Mean Annual Runoff : 1570 m3/sec.
Specific discharge :
Maximum: 0.045 m3/sec./km2
Minimum : 0.029 m3/sec./km2
Kali Gandaki at Kotagaon : 11400 km2
Myagdi Khola at Mangalghat catchment area: 1112 km2
Modi khola at Nayapul catchment area : 601 km2
Andhi Khola at Andhimuhan catchment area : 476 km2
Location of River Basins for flow trend analyses
Monthly trend of flow observed at the Myagdi River at
Mangal Ghat

Flow of Myagdi River in January Flow of Myagdi River in February


Station Location : Mangal Ghat , St. No. 404.7 Station Location : Mangal Ghat , St. No. 404.7
20 16
18 14

D is ch a rg e (cu m e cs )
D is c h a rg e (cu m e c s )

16
12
14
12 10
10 8
8 6
6
4
4
2 2
0 0

1970

1975

1980

1985

1990

1995

2000

2005
1970

1975

1980

1985

1990

1995

2000

Year 2005 Year


Monthly trend of flow observed at the Myagdi River at
Mangal Ghat

Flow of Myagdi River in March Flow of Myagdi River in April


Station Location : Mangal Ghat , St. No. 404.7 Station Location : Mangal Ghat , St. No. 404.7

18 60
16

D is ch a rg e (cu m e cs )
50
D is ch a rg e (cu m e cs )

14
12 40
10
30
8
6 20
4
10
2
0 0

1970

1975

1980

1985

1990

1995

2000

2005
1970

1975

1980

1985

1990

1995

2000

2005

Year Year
Monthly trend of flow observed at the Myagdi River at
Mangal Ghat

Flow of Myagdi River in May Flow of Myagdi River in June


Station Location : Mangal Ghat , St. No. 404.7 Station Location : Mangal Ghat , St. No. 404.7
50 160
45 140

D is ch a rg e (cu m e cs )
D is ch a rg e (cu m e cs )

40
120
35
30 100
25 80
20 60
15
40
10
5 20
0 0

1970

1975

1980

1985

1990

1995

2000

2005
1970

1975

1980

1985

1990

1995

2000

2005

Year Year
F
Monthly trend of flow observed at the Myagdi River at
Mangal Ghat

Flow of Myagdi River in July Flow of Myagdi River in August


Station Location : Mangal Ghat , St. No. 404.7 Station Location : Mangal Ghat , St. No. 404.7
350 450
400

Dis charge (cum ecs )


300
D is charge (cum ecs )

350
250 300
200 250
200
150
150
100 100
50 50
0
0

1970

1975

1980

1985

1990

1995

2000

2005
1970

1975

1980

1985

1990

1995

2000

2005
Year
Year
Monthly trend of flow observed at the Modi River at Nayapul

Flow of Modi River in May Flow of Modi River in June


Station Location : Nayapul , St. No. 406.5 Station Location : Nayapul , St. No. 406.5

35 100
30
Discharge (cumecs)

Dis c harge (c umec s )


80
25
20 60
15 40
10
20
5
0 0
1988

1990

1992

1994

1996

1998

2000

1988

1990

1992

1994

1996

1998

2000
Year Year
Monthly trend of flow observed at the Modi River at Nayapul

Flow of Modi River in July Flow of Modi River in August


Station Location : Nayapul , St. No. 406.5 Station Location : Nayapul , St. No. 406.5

300 300
Dis c harge (c umec s )

250

Dis c harge (c umec s )


250
200 200
150 150

100 100

50 50

0 0

1988

1990

1992

1994

1996

1998

2000
1988

1990

1992

1994

1996

1998

Year 2000 Year


Monthly trend of flow observed at the Andhi Khola at
Andhimuhan

Flow of Andhi Khola River in May Flow of Andhi Khola River in June
Station Location : Andhi Mohan , St. No. 415 Station Location : Andhi Mohan , St. No. 415

7
D is charge (cum ecs )

D is charge (cum ecs )


6 40
5
30
4
3 20
2
10
1
0 0

1960

1965

1970

1975

1980

1985

1990

1995
1960

1965

1970

1975

1980

1985

1990

1995
Year Year
Monthly trend of flow observed at the Andhi Khola at
Andhimuhan

Flow of Andhi Khola River in July Flow of Andhi Khola River in August
Station Location : Andhi Mohan , St. No. 415 Station Location : Andhi Mohan , St. No. 415
100
80

Discharge (cumecs)
80
70
Discharge (cumecs)

60 60
50
40 40
30
20
20
10 0

1960

1965

1970

1975

1980

1985

1990

1995
0
1960

1965

1970

1975

1980

1985

1990

1995
Year Year
Monthly trend of flow observed at the Badi Ghat Khola at
Rudra Beni

Flow of Badi Gad Khola River in July Flow of Badi Gad Khola River in August
Station Location : Rudra Beni , St. No. 417 Station Location : Rudra Beni , St. No. 417

Discharge (cumecs)
1200
D ischarge (cumecs)

700
600 1000
500 800
400 600
300 400
200
200
100
0 0

1975

1980

1985

1990

1995

2000
1975

1980

1985

1990

1995

Year 2000 Year


Impact of Climate Change
Days and nights are becoming more warmer
Cool days and nights are turning
lessPrecipitation trend is not as apparent as
temperature but increased trend is indicated
Number of rainy days with >= 100 mm are
increasing
Number of rainy days are decreasing
Extreme events are increasing
Impact on Glaciers
Glaciers in the Himalayas are retreating fast:
Rikha Samba glacier, AX010, Yala and Imja are
some of the observed.
Glaciers are retreating very fast from several
meters to 50 meters per year.
Impact on water availability

Increase in Extreme events (temperature,


precipitation) pose a great threat to the river
discharge.
Dept. of Hydrology and Meteorology study
showed an increase of 13% more flow on
Karnali River on a 4 degree temperature rise
and 20% precipitation increase.
Impact on Water Sectors
Extreme weather conditions make the
hydropower projects more vulnerable
The dry period will invite more uncertainties
on power generation capacity
Sediment load will also cause problems
Impacts on water sectors contd..
Drinking water supply will be critical
Intense precipitation, Increased flood runoff and a great threat:
floods of catastrophic nature, long inundation period, land
degradation,
land slides, mass wasting, heavy sediment load,Increased soil
erosion.
Increase in flood and drought magnitude and damages;
Conoclusions
Climatic change affects hydrology of river basin such as
timing of water availability and quantity as well as quality.
Change in hydrology induce risk to water resources
facilities( flooding, landslide and sedimentation).
The impact of climatic variability on water resources
depends not only on change in volume and quality but
also on system characteristics.
Snowfed rivers have early shifting non_ snowfed rivers
have late shifting of hydrograph.
Climate variability produce excess water in wet period
and less river discharge in dry period .
The assessments of the climate change impacts are very
essentials for efficient and effective planning of water
resources in sustainable manner.
Thank you
.