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Changes to the hydrological cycle and vulnerability of water resources
Introductory guide to water resources and climate change
Water from tap
M. Ostergaard / Panos Pictures
The IPCC Fifth Assessment Report (AR5) highlights how water is an essential crosscutting theme when addressing climate change. It provides new scientific evidence and a major advance about the likelihood of “a detectable human influence on the global water cycle since 1960”. Ramy Hanna, a doctoral researcher at the Institute of the Development Studies has developed an introductory guide that provides a brief snapshot of three issues relevant to the state of uncertainties around climate change and water resources: complex science, development impacts and the trade-offs between water-energy-food security. Ramy has also selected key research readings on each of the above issues.

Latest Documents

Water, Megacities and global change: portraits of 15 emblematic cities of the world
United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization 2016
Numerous studies have explored urban growth and the emergence of the megapolitan phenomenon through increasing growth in the number of cities with over 10 million inhabitants. Similarly, the processes of climate change are also the su...
Impacts of climate change on the cryosphere, hydrological regimes and glacial lakes of the Hindu Kush Himalayas: a review of current knowledge
International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development, (ICIMOD), Nepal 2016
The climate and cryosphere of the Hindu Kush Himalayan (HKH) region have changed in the past and are very likely to change in the future. Warming of the climate system is unequivocal. The atmospheric concentration of greenhouse gases ...
(Un)natural disasters: communicating linkages between extreme events and climate change
World Meteorological Organization 2016
Issue of the World Meteorological Organization Bulletin.  The science of attributing extreme weather and climate events has progressed in recent years to enable an analysis of the role of human causes while an event is still in t...
South Africa’s drought preparedness in the water sector: too little too late?
R. Meissner; I. Jacobs-Mata / South African Institute of International Affairs 2016
South Africa experiences droughts on a regular basis, often associated with significant negative impacts on society and the economy. Droughts can be forecast, and South African climate scientists have been developing computer-generate...
Ocean, environment, climate change and human mobility
International Organization for Migration 2016
The ocean is a crucial component of a series of natural equilibria that enable life on our planet. The importance of the ocean in climate regulation places it at the heart of climate change economic and social issues, and namely envir...
Peri-urban water security: an agenda for water governance
Water Security in Peri-Urban South Asia 2013
Water governance needs to mainstream peri­-urban water security.  As cities grow, policy makers and planners focus onmeeting the needs of  urban populations. This happens at the expense of the peri-urban and the rural. F...
Taking the road less taken: reorienting the state in periurban water management
A. Dewan; V. Narain; P. Ranjan / Water Security in Peri-Urban South Asia 2013
The villages of Sultanpur and Jhanjhrola Khera are located about 15 kms away from Gurgaon city in the North-West Indian state of Haryana. Urbanization and climate change have together altered water access and security in these vi...
Changing environment – changing waters: an analysis of drinking water access of vulnerable groups in peri-urban Sultanpur
A. van der Woude / Water Security in Peri-Urban South Asia 2013
In Sultanpur, India access to drinking water takes a variety of forms, due to varying hydrological conditions and different technologies available. Water from the piped supply network and groundwater form the two main drinking water s...
Power, social capital and differential vulnerabilities: a study of water access in a peri-urban village of Haryana
Water Security in Peri-Urban South Asia 2013
This article deals with the subject of water access in a peri-urban village of Haryana. It describes how power and social capital influence the flow of water. It argues that political power is a significant determinant influencing wat...
Salinity progression at Khulna: anthropogenic or climate change induced?
Water Security in Peri-Urban South Asia 2013
Surface water salinity, being accentuated by the reduction in the dry season upland flows, now reaches as far as Khulna - a coastal city of Bangladesh highly exposed to climate change impacts. The projected sea level rise due to clima...
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More on water


carrying water buckets


This key issues guide provides a snapshot of: the implications for adaptation to changes in water availability and access; the challenge of interpreting and using climate data at different scales to plan the development of water resources more effectively; and the larger institutional issue of how global water and climate communities can more meaningfully be brought together. Read more here.