Impacts of climate change on water availability in Zambia: implications for irrigation development

By Byman H. Hamududu and Hambulo Ngoma

Water resources are important for current and future socioeconomic development of any country. To manage water resources sustainably requires a good understanding of the current and future availability of these resources at local level: how much water is available, where is it available and when?

This paper assesses the spatial and temporal distribution of water resources and the impacts of projected climate change on water resource availability, and draws implications for irrigation development in Zambia. Unlike past studies done at national level, this study is at river basin level. Using a water balance model in a hydrological modelling framework and statistical downscaling of future climate scenarios from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the paper simulates the impacts of climate change on water availability in Zambia’s main river basins from current periods until the end of the century in 2100.

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