Within the FutureDAMs research project, the Water Resources Group of The University of Manchester and the International Water Management Institute (IWMI) organized a 5-day workshop on the methods and tools produced in FutureDAMs for modelling water-energy-food-environment systems. The workshop was held in person at the University of Manchester, with some IWMI participants joining online from Central, West, and South Asia, North and West Africa, and North America.
The workshop covered three main topics:
- The future use of the FutureDAMs tools and methods by the IWMI,
- Developing initial river system models for two river basins of interest to IWMI,
- Feedback on the online training material available with the FutureDAMs tools.
In the workshop, the technical use, the outputs, and the data requirements of WaterStrategy and Nexus-Strategy—the water-energy-food-environment modelling tools developed by FutureDAMs— were presented and discussed.
Results co-produced by FutureDAMs researchers and regional partners for the Nile Basin, the Volta Basin, and the Eastern African Power Pool were presented at the workshop as examples of how the tools can be used to guide planning water-energy-food-environment large infrastructure investment and management decisions.
FutureDAMs experience in building river system models, planning river infrastructure operation, integrating variable renewable energy sources, and regional energy systems interconnections were presented and discussed in the workshop.
During the workshop, IMWI researchers worked together with University of Manchester researchers to develop river system models for two large river basins of future interest to IWMI. The basins considered were the Incomati in Southern Africa and the Amu Darya in Central Asia. By the end of the workshop, initial working river system models of the Incomati and the Amu Darya River Basins were finalized using WaterStrategy.
The models represent major river system processes and infrastructures such as dams and irrigation and municipal water demands. The combined expertise of the water resources group of the University of Manchester and the International Water Management Institute was key to data collection and model building. The University of Manchester and the International Water Management Institute researchers will continue to work closely together over March 2022 to calibrate the river system models developed for the Incomati and the Amu Darya basins and formulate scenarios in consultation with relevant stakeholders.
Researchers of IWMI used the online training material available with the FutureDAMs tools to train themselves on using WaterStrategy to build river system models. During the workshop, they provided feedback on how the University of Manchester researchers and software developers could improve the tools and training material to enhance user experience.