Increasing drought in Jordan: Climate change and cascading Syrian land-use impacts on reducing transboundary flow
Increasing drought in Jordan: Climate change and cascading Syrian land-use impacts on reducing transboundary flow.
As a case in point, we analyze Jordan’s surface water resources and agricultural water demand through 2100, considering the combined impacts of climate change and land-use change driven by the Syrian conflict.
Comparing the baseline period to 2070–2100, average temperature increases by 4.5°C, rainfall decreases by 30%, and multiple drought-type occurrences increase from ~8 in 30 years to ~25 in 30 years.
Watershed simulations of future transboundary Yarmouk-Jordan River flow from Syria show that Jordan would receive 51 to 75% less Yarmouk water compared to historical flow.
Recovery of Syrian irrigated agriculture to pre-conflict conditions would produce twice the decline in transboundary flow as that due to climate change.
In Jordan, the confluence of limited water supply, future drought, and transboundary hydrologic impacts of land use severely challenges achieving freshwater sustainability.
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