Severe Drought in Finland: Modeling Effects on Water Resources and Assessing Climate Change Impacts

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A1 Alkuperäisartikkeli tieteellisessä aikakauslehdessä
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Sustainability, Volume 11, issue 8
Severe droughts cause substantial damage to different socio-economic sectors, and even Finland, which has abundant water resources, is not immune to their impacts. To assess the implications of a severe drought in Finland, we carried out a national scale drought impact analysis. Firstly, we simulated water levels and discharges during the severe drought of 1939–1942 (the reference drought) in present-day Finland with a hydrological model. Secondly, we estimated how climate change would alter droughts. Thirdly, we assessed the impact of drought on key water use sectors, with a focus on hydropower and water supply. The results indicate that the long-lasting reference drought caused the discharges to decrease at most by 80% compared to the average annual minimum discharges. The water levels generally fell to the lowest levels in the largest lakes in Central and South-Eastern Finland. Climate change scenarios project on average a small decrease in the lowest water levels during droughts. Severe drought would have a significant impact on water-related sectors, reducing water supply and hydropower production. In this way drought is a risk multiplier for the water–energy–food security nexus. We suggest that the resilience to droughts could be improved with region-specific drought management plans and by including droughts in existing regional preparedness exercises.
Climate change, Drought, Finland, Groundwater, Hydrological modeling, Preparedness, Water security, Water-energy-food security nexus, ENERGY, water-energy-food security nexus, water security, groundwater, TRENDS, EUROPE, FLOODS, PRECIPITATION, hydrological modeling, preparedness, drought, SIMULATIONS, PROJECTIONS, climate change
Other note
Veijalainen, N, Ahopelto, L, Marttunen, M, Jääskeläinen, J, Britschgi, R, Orvomaa, M, Belinskij, A & Keskinen, M 2019, ' Severe Drought in Finland: Modeling Effects on Water Resources and Assessing Climate Change Impacts ', Sustainability, vol. 11, no. 8, 2450 .