Preprint Article Version 1 This version is not peer-reviewed

Hydrological Guidelines for Reservoir Operation: Application to the Brazilian Semiarid Region

Version 1 : Received: 12 October 2018 / Approved: 15 October 2018 / Online: 15 October 2018 (05:13:54 CEST)

A peer-reviewed article of this Preprint also exists.

de Araújo, J.C.; Mamede, G.L.; de Lima, B.P. Hydrological Guidelines for Reservoir Operation to Enhance Water Governance: Application to the Brazilian Semiarid Region. Water 2018, 10, 1628. de Araújo, J.C.; Mamede, G.L.; de Lima, B.P. Hydrological Guidelines for Reservoir Operation to Enhance Water Governance: Application to the Brazilian Semiarid Region. Water 2018, 10, 1628.

Journal reference: Water 2018, 10, 1628
DOI: 10.3390/w10111628

Abstract

The Brazilian water legislation advocates that some uses have priority over others, but this aspect has never been clearly addressed, generating conflicts. Water authorities usually refer to hydrological models to justify their decisions on water allocation. However, a significant group of stakeholders does not feel qualified to discuss these models and is, therefore, excluded from the decision process. We hereby propose a hydrologically robust method to correlate water uses with their respective reservoir alert volumes, which should empower the less formally educated stakeholders. The method consists of: (i) generating the water discharge versus reliability curve, using a stochastic approach; (ii) generating the withdrawal discharge versus alert volume family of curves, using a water-balance approach; (iii) calibrating the key parameter T using field data; and (iv) associating each water use with its alert volume. We have applied the method to four of the largest reservoirs (2.10³ - 2.10² hm³) in the semi-arid Ceará State. The results indicate that low-priority water uses should be rationalized when the reservoir volume is below 20%; whereas uses with very high priority should start rationalization when it is below 11%. These hydrological guidelines should help enhance water governance among non-specialist stakeholders in water-scarce and reservoir-dependent regions.

Subject Areas

reservoirs; water allocation; water scarcity; alert volume; governance

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