Dear Visitor, Welcome to tour website devoted to global-scale Hydrology. We present research on global hydrology as conducted by our Earth Surface Hydrology group at Utrecht University. We conduct this research in close co-operation with Deltares. Global-scale hydrology concentrates on the role of the terrestrial hydrological cycle in System Earth. In particular it focuses on the role of climate variability on continental hydrology, on land-surface atmosphere feedbacks and the modelling of global water scarcity and groundwater depletion. To this purpose we have built a next-generation global hydrological and water resources model PCR-GLOBWB. The model is already widely used in various global or continental change analyses, such as the assessment of global nutrient dynamics, methane emissions, global water stress assessment, real-time global flood forecasting and global flood risk mapping. Next, to Deltares, we work together with the Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency and with many partners in international projects. Upon its completion, you will find on this site:

  • the people involved in global hydrological research;
  • the models we have developed for simulating global hydrology and water scarcity;
  • global datasets on simulated hydrological variables, sectoral water demand, water stress surface water temperature, both past reconstruction as well as future projections. Datasets can both be viewed on-line as well as downloaded.
  • overview of our research, projects and publications.

  Thank you for your interest in our work,  

Marc Bierkens Chair in Earth Surface Hydrology

New Nature paper: the effects of groundwater pumping on environmental streamflow

Almost 20% of the catchment areas where groundwater is pumped suffer from a flow of streams and rivers that is too low to sustain their freshwater ecosystems. This number is expected to increase to 50% by 2050. This is the conclusion of a study that appears in Nature today. The study is a collaboration between Utrecht University, the water institute Deltares, the University of Freiburg (Germany) and the University of Victoria (Canada).

See the news item at ar UU website!

See the original paper in Nature!

See National Geographic for a nice web-piece.

And a small movie explaining the paper.



Creating groundwater by Building with Nature

We explored the global potential for growing groundwater resources by protecting eroding sandy coastlines. See our paper in ScientificReports!

Sand Engine

The Sand Engine: a large dynamic beach nourishement with a primary objective to protect the coast. Within the sand engine and its hinterland, fresh groundwater reserves develop that float on top of the undrelying salt groundwater. We explored to what extent these solutions can be applied globally.

Our global hydrology and water resources model PCR-GLOBWB supports new Aqueduct Water Risk Atlas

The new Water Risk Atlas by the World Resources Institute has been launched. It is now based a consistent set of maps that are based on simulations with our gloval hydrology and water resources model PCR-GLOBWB 2. Press coverage was extensive, based on the message that a quarter of the world's population is exposed to water stress. See the article on teh front page of the New York Times.

Baseline water stress

Baseline water stress: the orange to red colours denote areas ranging from medium to extermely high water stress.




Nature publication: the fate of Asia’s glaciers under 1.5 degree warming


We published a paper in Nature projecting that under a 1.5  degree warming, as agreed upon under the Paris Agreement, the glaciers in High Mountain Asia will have lost about 35% of their mass. Under more realistic climate scenarios the mass loss could add up to 65%, with dire consequences for people that depend on the melt water runoff of the Asian rivers.

A  full-text access to a view-only version of our paper can be found with the following link!

Also see the News and Views about our paper by Graham Cogley

First author Philip Kraaijenbrink has made a nice visual story line of the study.

Some good press coverage: Carbon Brief  The Guardian

PCR-GLOBWB and high impact papers: Yoshi and Niko strike again!

Former members of our group Yoshihide Wada and Niko Wanders were involved in new high impact publications using PCR-GLOBWB:

Yoshi was co-author on a paper in Nature assessing how groundwater depletion is embedded in international food trade.  See this link for a nice BBC news item.

Both Niko and Yoshi were involved in a GRL paper looking how water management can both mitigate and intensify hydrological drought. The PNAS website had a nice item about this work.

Global two-layer transient groundwater model published (and more)

We are happy to announce that Inge de Graaf published a paper about our newly-developed global two-layer transient groundwater model. This version is coupled one-way with the global hydrology and water resources model PCR-GLOBWB. A newer version also has a two-way (at time-step) coupling with PCR-GLOBWB and will be reported on shortly. You can find the paper here!

Furthermore, Yoshihide Wada (vice-director Water at IIASA and senior research associate at UU) and colleagues published a new paper in Nature Geoscience in which they show from analyses of satellite and local well data spanning the past decade that long-term changes in monsoon precipitation are driving groundwater storage variability in most parts of India either directly by changing recharge or indirectly by changing abstraction.

Nature Climate Change: Global drivers of future flood risk

Worldwide economic losses from river flooding could increase 20-fold by the end of the 21st century if no further actions on flood risk reduction are taken. Over 70% of this increase can be attributed to economic growth in flood prone areas

This follows from a recent study by a Dutch consortium that includes our research group.

See the study in Nature Climate Change!

Read more at: http://phys.org/news/2015-12-climate-main-prone-areas.html#jCp


This is where you’ll find us at AGU 2015!

These are our contributions at AGU 2015

H13R-01 Development of human impact modeling in global hydrology
Monday, 14 December 2015  13:40 - 13:55 Moscone West – 3011
Marc Bierkens and Yoshihide Wada

H13R-06 eWaterCycle: Recent progress in a global operational hydrological forecasting model
Monday, 14 December 2015  14:55 - 15:10 Moscone West – 3011
Nick Van De Giesen, Edwin Sutanudjaja, Marc Bierkens, Niels Drost, Rolf Hut

H13R-08 Limits to Global Groundwater Consumption
Inge de Graaf et al.
Monday, 14 December 2015  15:25 - 15:40 Moscone West - 3011

H23E-1622 The HyperHydro (H^2) experiment for comparing different large-scale models at various resolutions
Edwin Sutanudjaja et al.
Tuesday, 15 December 2015  13:40 - 18:00 Moscone South - Poster Hall

GC32B-05 Reducing water scarcity possible by 2050: Linking global assessments to policy dimensions
Yoshihide Wada et al.
Wednesday, 16 December 2015  11:20 - 11:35 Moscone West - 3001

H43J-04 Improved Large-Scale Inundation Modelling by 1D-2D Coupling and Consideration of Hydrologic and Hydrodynamic Processes – a Case Study in the Amazon
Jannis Hoch et al.
Thursday, 17 December 2015  14:25 - 14:40 Moscone West – 3020

H43E-1545 Simulating the impact of past and future land cover and climate change on the global hydrological system using PCR-GLOBWB
Joyce Bosmans et al.

Thursday, 17 December 2015  13:40 - 18:00 Moscone South - Poster Hall
G52A-08 A century-long simulation of terrestrial water storage change and its contribution to global sea-level
Marc Bierkens et al.
Friday, 18 December 2015  12:05 - 12:20 Moscone West - 2002

H53L-04 Improved Large-Scale Hydrological Modelling Through The Assimilation Of Streamflow And Downscaled Satellite Soil Moisture Observations
Patricia Lopez-Lopez et al.
Friday, 18 December 2015  14:25 - 14:40 Moscone West - 3022

And Yoshi Wada’s many co-operative papers: 

And Niko Wanders (former PhD) seeding his many oats:

A high-resolution global groundwater model

Inge de Graaf , PhD student in our group has published a paper about a global 6-arcminute one-layer groundwater model. The model is made in MODFLOW and is forced with recharge and surface water levels from our global hydrological model. In this publication a steady state global groundwater depth map has been made, but in subsequent work Inge will provide an updated 5-arcminute two-layer version and transient runs, including the effects of groundwater abstractions.

The reference:

De Graaf,  I.E.M., E.H. Sutanudjaja, L.P.H. van Beek, and M.F.P. Bierkens, 2015. high-resolution global-scale groundwater model. Hydrology Earth System Science, 19, 823-837.

The paper was highlighted at the EGU website:


A nice picture of the global groundwater table:

Long-term average groundwater depth (m below surface)

Long-term average groundwater depth (m below surface)


WRI Launches Global Flood Analyzer – based on model runs with PCR-GLOBWB

The World Resources Institute has launced the Aqueduct Global Flood Analyzer v1.0. It the first-ever public analysis of current and future river-flood risks worldwide.

The Analyzer estimates current and 2030 values for potential exposed GDP, affected population and urban damage from river floods for every state, country, and major river basin in the world.

The tool is based on a large number of runs with our global hydrological model PCR-GLOBWB from 1070-2030 using bias-corrected global climate models as inputs. These runs have been downscaled by Deltares and turned into flood risk (people and GDP affected) by IVM-VU University of Amsterdam, Utrecht University and the  under different socio-economic scenarios made by PBL- Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency.

See the blog post at WRI for more information.

The key findings are:

Key findings:

  • River flooding could affect more people and cause significantly more damage by 2030, as climate change and socio-economic development accelerate.

Increased flood expore by 2013




  • Today, river flooding affects 21 million people worldwide and exposes $96 billion in GDP on average each year. By 2030, those numbers could grow to 54 million people and $521 billion in GDP exposed every year.

Today’s GDP exposed to river floods

  • Top 11 countries (ranked by affected population) are India, Bangladesh, China, Vietnam, Pakistan, Indonesia, Egypt, Myanmar, Afghanistan, Nigeria and Brazil.

Top 15 countries with greatest percentage of population exposed to river floods

See the publications supporting this research: Winsemius et al (2013) and Ward et al. (2014).


Virtual water trade in the Roman world


oman aqueduct of Luynes (Credit: Daniel Jolivet)

oman aqueduct of Luynes (Credit: Daniel Jolivet)

The Roman World used trade of grain (actual virtual water trade) as a means to be more resilient against climate change. At the same time, as population grew as a result of a steady supply of food, it became more dependent on trade and thus more sensitive to political or climatological disturbances of the trade network. These are the main conclusions from a study by

The Roman World used trade of grain (actual virtual water trade) as a means to be more resilient against climate change. At the same time, as population grew as a result of a steady supply of food, it became more dependent on trade and thus more sensitive to political or climatological disturbances of the trade network. These are the main conclusions from a study by Brian Dermody and coworkers from the Netherlands and the US.

The paper appeared in Hydrology and Earth System Sciences:

Dermody, B. J., van Beek, R. P. H., Meeks, E., Klein Goldewijk, K., Scheidel, W., van der Velde, Y., Bierkens, M. F. P., Wassen, M. J., and Dekker, S. C.: A virtual water network of the Roman world, Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 18, 5025-5040, doi:10.5194/hess-18-5025-2014, 2014.

See the press release of EGU!

It got quite some media attention. For instance in Smithsonian Magazine.


See us at AGU 2014!

You can follow our work during AGU 2014. Following is a  list of sessions, orals and posters that we are involved in. Maybe see you there!

Monday December 15 2014

14:10-14:25 Moscone West 2010: H13L-03 Global Depletion of Groundwater Resources: Past and Future Analyses (Marc Bierkens et al., Invited)

Tuesday December 16 2014

8:00 – 12:20 Moscone West Poster Hall: G21B-0446 Comparing Tide Gauge Observations to Regional Patterns of Sea-Level Change (1961–2003) (Aimee Slangen: et al. with Yoshi Wada)

8:00 – 12:20 Moscone West Poster: GC21B-0532 Linking Groundwater Use and Stress to Specific Crops Using the Groundwater Footprint in the Central Valley and High Plains Aquifer Systems, U.S. (Laurent Esnault et al. with Yoshi Wada, Rens van Beek and Marc Bierkens)

10:30-12:20 Moscone West 3016: GC22F The Effects of Anthropogenic Land-Use and Land-Cover Change on Local to Global Climate: Forcings and Feedbacks from the Past to the Future II (session co-convened by Yoshi Wada)

16:00 – 18:00 Moscone West 3003: GC24A Global and Regional Food and Water Security Under Increasing Socioeconomic Pressure and Changing Climate II (Session convened by Yoshi Wada)

16:30 – 16:45 Moscone West 3014: H24F-07 Simulating subsurface heterogeneity improves large-scale water resources predictions (Andreas Hartmann et al. with Yoshi Wada).

Wednesday December 17 2014

10:20 – 10:35 Moscone West 3011: H32E-01 Global Modeling of Withdrawal, Allocation and Consumptive Use of Surface Water and Groundwater Resources (Yoshi Wada et al. Invited)

13:40-18:00 Moscone West  Poster Hall: H33G Advances in Process-Based, Very High Resolution Hydrological Modeling Across Scales (Poster session co-convened by Marc Bierkens)

13:40 – 14:00 Moscone West 3014: H33K-01 Sustainability of global groundwater and surface water use: past reconstruction and future projections (Yoshi Wada et al. Invited)

14:00 – 14:15 Moscone West 3014: H33K-02 Reconstruction of Groundwater Depletion Using a Global Scale Groundwater Model (Inge de Graaf et al)

17:15 – 17:30 Moscone West 3010: H34C-06 eWaterCycle: Live Demonstration of an Operational Hyper Resolution Global Hydrological Model (Niels Drost et al. with Marc Bierkens and Edwin Sutanudjaja)

Thursday December 18 2014

8:00 – 12:20 Moscone West Poster hall: H41G-0913 Modeling Changing Morphology and Density Dependent Groundwater Flow in a Dynamic Environment: case study (Sebastian Huizer et al. with Marc Bierkens and Gu Oude-Essink)

10:20 – 10:35 Moscone West 3022: PCR-GLOBWB version 2.0: A High Resolution Integrated Global Hydrology and Water Resources Model (Edwin Sutanudjaja et al.)

11:35 – 11:50 Moscone West 3004: H42B-06 Increases in River Runoff Projected for High Mountain Asia’s River Basins during the 21st Century (Walter Immerzeel et al., Invited) —

17:20 – 17:40 Moscone West 3005: C44A-06 High-Resolution Monitoring of Himalayan Glacier Dynamics Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (Walter Immerzeel et al. Invited)

Friday December 19 2014

13:40 – 13:55 Moscone West 3014: H53M-01 Hyper-Resolution Global Hydrological Modelling: Rationale, Challenges and What’s Next (Marc Bierkens, Invited)

17:30 – 17:45 H54C-07 Moscone West 3011: Ensemble Evaporation Predictions from Remote Sensing in the Nile Basin (Wim Bastiaanssen et al., Invited with Yoshi Wada)

Human and climate impacts on the 21st century hydrological drought

Niko Wanders and Yoshihide Wada published a paper in the Journal of Hydrology where they analyzed which part of the expected future hydrological drouht can be attributed to climate change and which part to human water consumption.

The paper:

N. Wanders and Y. Wada, 2014.  Human and climate impacts on the 21st century hydrological drought, Journal of Hydrology (in press; online).

Their results show “a significant impact of climate change and human water use in large parts of Asia, Middle East and the Mediterranean, where the relative contribution of humans on the changed drought severity can be close to 100%”. The conclude that “the impact of human water use and reservoirs is nontrivial and can vary substantially per region and per season. Therefore, human influences should be included in projections of future drought characteristics, considering their large impact on the changing drought conditions”.

Figure 5 of their article: Impact of reservoirs and human water use on drought deficit volume compared to the pristine conditions (dDefhuman), over the period 2070–2099. Each plot gives the annual average impact derived from 5 GCMs for different RCP scenarios. Impact is calculated as a percent, where positive percentages indicate a increase in the drought deficit volume and negative percentages indicate an decrease in the drought deficit volume as a result of human water use and reservoirs.

30% of global water use is non-sustainable

Using a newly developed index and our group’s global hydrological model PCR-GLOBWB Yoshi Wada and Marc Bierkens assessed the amount of groundwater consumption coming from non-renewable sources as well as the amount of surface water consumption exceeding environmental flow limits. They calculated that this non-sustainable blue water use exceeds 30% of the current water consumption and that this number will rise to 40% towards the end of the 21st century. When combined with virtual water use, the index, called the blue water sustainability index (BlWSI), can also be used to assess which part of individual products is from sustainable water.

Wada, Y.  and M.F.P.  Bierkens, 2014. Sustainability of global water use: past reconstruction and future projections. Environmental Research Letters 9, 104003 (17pp).

Cool movie with PCR-GLOBWB 2.0

NEW: a nice movie with output from PCR-GLOWB 2.0: 30 years of simulation at 5 minute resolution and daily time step. Shown are monthly averages of 1) upper left: soil moiture (0-30 cm); upper right: discharge (m3/s), lower left: snow cover fraction; lower right: : soil moiture (0-30 cm). This movie was rendered at the eScienceCenter.

Nature Geoscience commentary: Wedge approach to water stress

Yoshihide Wada of the Earth Surface Hydrology group co-authored a commentary in Nature Geoscience, arguing that the wedge approach proposed for evaluating carbon mitigation policies is also suitable to evaluate policies to avoid future water stress.

See the commentary at: Wada, T., T. Gleeson and L. Esnault, 2014. Wedge approach to water stress. Nature Geoscience 7, 615-617.

See also the article in Space Daily!

RS soil moisture helps to calibrate large-scale hydrological models

In addition to discharge observations, remotely sensed soil moisture estimates improve the calibration of large-scale hydrological models as shown by Niko Wanders  in a recent publication in Water Resources Research. In this paper a dual state-parameter Ensemble Kalman Filter is used to calibrate the hydrological model LISFLOOD for the Upper Danube. Calibration is done using discharge and remotely sensed soil moisture acquired by AMSR-E, SMOS, and ASCAT.

Wanders, N., M.F.P. Bierkens, S.M. Jong, A. Roo, and D. Karssenberg, 2014. The benefits of using remotely sensed soil moisture in parameter identification of large-scale hydrological models. Water Resources Research 50 (in press).

We are at GEWEX 2014 conference; Trending now: Water

Group members will be present on the 7th International Scientific Conference on the Global Water and Energy Cycle in the Hague.

Marc Bierkens: session chair in Everest I and II on monday July 14 15:30-17:30

Edwin Sutanudjaja: talk in Wolrd Forum theater: tuesday july 15 11:15-11:30.


Monday: Patricia Lopez (9-14); Nick van de Giesen/Edwin Sutanudjaja/Marc Bierkens (9-25)

Tuesday: Inge de Graaf (12-1)

Wednesday: Niko Wanders (14-15); Rianne Giesen/Walter Immerzeel (18-2); Walter immerzeel/Arthur Lutz (18-2)

See the conference site:


Contribution to GFDRR report and policy note on “understanding risk”

Our group contributed to the report and policy note  Understanding Risk: the Evolution of Disaster Risk Assessment issued by the GLOBAL FACILITY FOR DISASTER REDUCTION AND RECOVERY and paid for by World Bank. Our contribution, a case study (Bangladesh) and an example of the GLOFRIS framework, was lead by VU University in co-operation with Deltares and PBL.

Download the report and the policy note here!



Nature Climate Change: Increasing Himalayan runoff in the coming decades

A study in Nature Climate change by Arthur Lutz et al. (including scientists from Utrecht University, FutureWater and ICIMOD) confirmed earlier findings in two smaller catchments across the entire Himalayas and Hindu Kush: runoff will increase during the 21st century due to increasing precipitation and glacier melt.

See: http://www.nature.com/nclimate/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nclimate2237.html

ICIMOD press release

UU pres release (in Dutch)

International Workshop on Hyper-resolution Global Hydrological Modelling

Toward global-scale models that are relevant at local scales!

On February 13/14 an international workshop was organized at Utrecht University, bringing together hydrologists from around the world that are involved in large-scale high- to hyper-resoluytion modelling of terrestrial hydrology. A succesfull workshop lead to the foundation of the HYperHydro network with three working groups:

  • WG1: Setting up a testbed for comparing different large-scale models at different resolutions.
  • WG2: Around computational challenges, including parallel computing and model component coupling.
  • WG3: With the goal to think about delivering the information needed to achieve hyper-resolution (< 1 km) globally: parameter sets, model concepts and forcing.

A splinter meeting will be organized at EGU 2014 in Vienna to further the network activities. You are welcome to join any of the groups by sending email to Marc Bierkens.

The workshop program and pdfs of the presentations can be found here!

Three new publications leading up to PCR-GLOBWB 2.0 are online!

Two recent publications on our global hydrological model PCR-GLOBWB  are on-line. The work in these papers is a precursor to the launch of PCR-GLOBWB 2.0.

These are:

Wada, Y.,  D. Wisser, and M. F. P. Bierkens, 2014. Global modeling of withdrawal, allocation and consumptive use of surface water and groundwater resources
Earth System Dynamics 5, 15-40.

De Graaf, I.E.M., L.P.H. van Beek, Y. Wada, M.F.P. Bierkens, 2014. Dynamic attribution of global water demand to surface water and groundwater resources: Effects of abstractions and return flows on river discharges  Advances in Water Resources 64, 21-33.

and a first full coupled groundwater-surface water version applied to the Rhine-Meuse basin:

Sutanudjaja, E.H., L.P.H. van Beek, S.M. de Jong, F.C. van Geer, and M.F.P. Bierkens 2014. Calibrating a large- extent high-resolution coupled groundwater-land surface model using soil moisture and discharge data. Water Resources Research 50, doi :10.1002/2013WR013807.

PNAS ISI-MIP papers are on line!

Since December 16,  the papers belonginging to the The Inter-Sectoral Impact Model Intercomparison Project (ISI-MIP) are on line with the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences journal. They are part of the special issue entitled: Global Climate Impacts: A Cross-Sector, Multi-Model Assessment Special Feature.

Members (Yoshi Wada) and former members (Dominik Wisser) of our group are co-authors of the following papers:

Jacob Schewe, Jens Heinke, Dieter Gerten, Ingjerd Haddeland, Nigel W. Arnell, Douglas B. Clark, Rutger Dankers, Stephanie Eisner, Balázs M. Fekete, Felipe J. Colón-González, Simon N. Gosling, Hyungjun Kim, Xingcai Liu, Yoshimitsu Masaki, Felix T. Portmann, Yusuke Satoh, Tobias Stacke, Qiuhong Tang, Yoshihide Wada, Dominik Wisser, Torsten Albrecht, Katja Frieler, Franziska Piontek, Lila Warszawski, and Pavel Kabat, 2014. Multimodel assessment of water scarcity under climate change.  PNAS 2013 ; published ahead of print December 16, 2013, doi:10.1073/pnas.1222460110.

Joshua Elliott, Delphine Deryng, Christoph Müller, Katja Frieler, Markus Konzmann, Dieter Gerten, Michael Glotter, Martina Flörke, Yoshihide Wada, Neil Best, Stephanie Eisner, Balázs M. Fekete, Christian Folberth, Ian Foster, Simon N. Gosling, Ingjerd Haddeland, Nikolay Khabarov, Fulco Ludwig, Yoshimitsu Masaki, Stefan Olin, Cynthia Rosenzweig, Alex C. Ruane, Yusuke Satoh, Erwin Schmid, Tobias Stacke, Qiuhong Tang, and Dominik Wisser, 2014. Constraints and potentials of future irrigation water availability on agricultural production under climate change.  PNAS 2013 ; published ahead of print December 16, 2013, doi:10.1073/pnas.1222474110.

Christel Prudhomme, Ignazio Giuntoli, Emma L. Robinson, Douglas B. Clark, Nigel W. Arnell, Rutger Dankers, Balázs M. Fekete, Wietse Franssen, Dieter Gerten, Simon N. Gosling, Stefan Hagemann, David M. Hannah, Hyungjun Kim, Yoshimitsu Masaki, Yusuke Satoh, Tobias Stacke, Yoshihide Wada, and Dominik Wisser, 2014. Hydrological droughts in the 21st century, hotspots and uncertainties from a global multimodel ensemble experiment. PNAS 2013 ; published ahead of print December 16, 2013, doi:10.1073/pnas.1222473110.

Ingjerd Haddeland, Jens Heinke, Hester Biemans, Stephanie Eisner, Martina Flörke, Naota Hanasaki, Markus Konzmann, Fulco Ludwig, Yoshimitsu Masaki, Jacob Schewe, Tobias Stacke, Zachary D. Tessler, Yoshihide Wada, and Dominik Wisser, 2014. Global water resources affected by human interventions and climate change . PNAS 2013 ; published ahead of print December 16, 2013, doi:10.1073/pnas.1222475110.

Rutger Dankers, Nigel W. Arnell, Douglas B. Clark, Pete D. Falloon, Balázs M. Fekete, Simon N. Gosling, Jens Heinke, Hyungjun Kim, Yoshimitsu Masaki, Yusuke Satoh, Tobias Stacke, Yoshihide Wada, and Dominik Wisser, 2014. First look at changes in flood hazard in the Inter-Sectoral Impact Model Intercomparison Project ensemble.  PNAS 2013 ; published ahead of print December 16, 2013, doi:10.1073/pnas.1302078110.

On top of that a paper appeared in Earth System Dynamics from the same inter-comparison project:

Davie, J. C. S., Falloon, P. D., Kahana, R., Dankers, R., Betts, R., Portmann, F. T., Wisser, D., Clark, D. B., Ito, A., Masaki, Y., Nishina, K., Fekete, B., Tessler, Z., Wada, Y., Liu, X., Tang, Q., Hagemann, S., Stacke, T., Pavlick, R., Schaphoff, S., Gosling, S. N., Franssen, W., and Arnell, N., 2013.  Comparing projections of future changes in runoff from hydrological and biome models in ISI-MIP, Earth System Dynamics 4, 359-374.

Our people at AGU Fall Meeting 2013

rian, Edwin, Inge, Niko and Yoshi are at the Fall meeting of the American Geophysical Union at San Francisco from December 8 to december 14.

These are their talks and posters:

Monday December 9

Poster Session: 8:00 AM - 12:20 PM; Hall A-C (Moscone South)

GC11A-0965. Virtual water management in the Roman world

Brian Dermody; Ludovicus P. Van Beek; Elijah Meeks; Kees Klein Goldewijk; Marc F. Bierkens; Walter Scheidel; Martin J. Wassen; Ype Van der Velde; Stefan C. Dekker

Poster Session 8:00 AM - 12:20 PM; Hall A-C (Moscone South)

GC11A-0978. Assessing the impacts of Three Gorges Dam on lake inundation areas across the downstream Yangtze floodplain

Jida Wang; Yongwei Sheng; Yoshihide Wada

Poster Session 8:00 AM - 12:20 PM; Hall A-C (Moscone South)


Katja Frieler; Christoph Müller; Joshua W. Elliott; Jens Heinke; Almut Arneth; Marc F. Bierkens; Philippe Ciais; Douglas H. Clark; Delphine Deryng; Petra M. Doll; Pete Falloon; Balazs M. Fekete; Christian Folberth; Andrew D. Friend; Simon N. Gosling; Ingjerd Haddeland; Nikolay Khabarov; Marc R. Lomas; Yoshimitsu Masaki; Kazuya Nishina; Kathleen Neumann; Taikan Oki; Ryan Pavlick; Alexander C. Ruane; Erwin Schmid; Christoph Schmitz; Tobias Stacke; Elke Stehfest; Qiuhong Tang; Dominik Wisser

Oral Session 8:00 AM - 10:00 AM; 3003 (Moscone West)

8:45 AM - 9:00 AM

GC11E-04. Multi-model projections and uncertainties of irrigation water demand under climate change (Invited)

Yoshihide Wada; Dominik Wisser; Stephanie Eisner; Martina Flörke; Dieter Gerten; Ingjerd Haddeland; Naota Hanasaki; Yoshimitsu Masaki; Felix T. Portmann; Tobias Stacke; Zachary D. Tessler; Jacob Schewe

Oral Session 8:00 AM - 10:00 AM; 3003 (Moscone West)

9:30 AM - 9:45 AM

GC11E-07. Multi-model assessment of water scarcity under climate change

Jacob Schewe; Jens Heinke; Dieter Gerten; Ingjerd Haddeland; Nigel W. Arnell; Douglas B. Clark; Rutger Dankers; Stephanie Eisner; Balazs M. Fekete; Felipe J. Colon-Gonzalez; Simon N. Gosling; Hyungjun KIM; Xingcai Liu; Yoshimitsu Masaki; Felix T. Portmann; Yusuke Satoh; Tobias Stacke; Qiuhong Tang; Yoshihide Wada; Dominik Wisser; torsten albrecht; Katja Frieler; Franziska Piontek; Lila Warszawski; Pavel Kabat

Oral Session 1:40 PM - 3:40 PM; 3014 (Moscone West)

3:12 PM - 3:25 PM

H13O-07. A high resolution global scale groundwater model

Inge E. de Graaf; Edwin Sutanudjaja; Ludovicus P. Van Beek; Marc F. Bierkens


Tuesday December 10

Poster Session 1:40 PM - 6:00 PM; Hall A-C (Moscone South)

H23E-1308. eWaterCycle: Developing a hyper resolution global hydrological model

Niels Drost; Edwin Sutanudjaja; Rolf Hut; Susan C. Steele-Dunne; Kor de Jong; Ludovicus P. Van Beek; Derek Karssenberg; Marc F. Bierkens; Nick Van De Giesen

Oral session 1:40 PM - 3:40 PM; 3003 (Moscone West)

1:55 PM - 2:10 PM

GC23F-02. Multimodel Estimate of Global Water Resources Affected by Human Interventions and Climate Change

Ingjerd Haddeland; Hester Biemans; Martina Flörke; Naota Hanasaki; Tobias Stacke; Zachary D. Tessler; Yoshihide Wada

Oral Session 4:00 PM - 6:00 PM; 3020 (Moscone West)

4:45 PM - 5:00 PM

H24E-04. The benefits of using remotely sensed soil moisture in parameter identification of large-scale hydrological models

Derek Karssenberg; Niko Wanders; Ad de Roo; Steven de Jong; Marc F. Bierkens


Wednesday  December 11

Poster Session 8:00 AM - 12:20 PM; Hall A-C (Moscone South)

H31H-1303. Global Scale, Local Relevance: Hydrological Modeling Using PCR-GLOBWB-2.0 At Five Minute Resolution Using Multimodel Climate Change Scenarios

Menno W. Straatsma; Edwin Sutanudjaja; Ludovicus P. Van Beek

Poster Session 1:40 PM - 6:00 PM; Hall A-C (Moscone South)

H33B-1352. The PCR-GLOBWB global hydrological reanalysis product

Marc F. Bierkens; Niko Wanders; Edwin Sutanudjaja; Ludovicus P. Van Beek


Thursday December 12

Oral session 4:00 PM - 6:00 PM; 3020 (Moscone West)

5:45 PM - 6:00 PM

H44E-08. The potential of remotely sensed soil moisture for operational flood forecasting

Niko Wanders; Derek Karssenberg; Ad de Roo; Steven de Jong; Marc F. Bierkens

Oral Session 4:00 PM - 6:00 PM; 3003 (Moscone West)

5:15 PM - 5:30 PM

GC44C-05. Global trends in future hydrological drought

Henny Van Lanen; Niko Wanders; Yoshihide Wada


Friday December 13           

Poster Session 8:00 AM - 12:20 PM; Hall A-C (Moscone South)

H51N-1385. Developing a high resolution groundwater model for Indonesia

Edwin Sutanudjaja; Inge E. de Graaf; Koko Alberti; Ludovicus P. Van Beek; Marc F. Bierkens

Oral session 8:00 AM - 10:00 AM; 3022 (Moscone West)

8:15 AM - 8:30 AM

H51P-02. Global River Flood Risk in a Changing World (Invited)

Hessel Winsemius; Philip Ward; Arno Bouwman; Ludovicus P. Van Beek; Brenden Jongman; Elke Stehfest; Marc F. Bierkens; Jeroen Aerts; Willem Ligtvoet; Jaap Kwadijk; Frederiek Sperna Weiland

Oral Session 1:40 PM - 3:40 PM; 3022 (Moscone West)

3:10 PM - 3:25 PM

H53J-07. Assessment of transboundary aquifers of the world—vulnerability arising from human water use (Invited)

Yoshihide Wada; Lena Heinrich

Oral Session 1:40 PM - 3:40 PM; 3022 (Moscone West)

3:25 PM - 3:40 PM

H53J-08. Assessing regional groundwater stress for nations using multiple data sources with the groundwater footprint (Invited)

Thomas P. Gleeson; Yoshihide Wada

Poster Session 8:00 AM - 12:20 PM; Hall A-C (Moscone South)

PP51A-1908. The Tropical Pacific: A changeable communicator or Holocene solar forcing

Brian Dermody; Ype Van der Velde; Marc F. Bierkens; Hugo J. Boer, De; Timme Donders; Stefan C. Dekker; Martin J. Wassen; Sybren S. Drijfhout


Yoshihide Wada obtains his PhD degree with distinction!

On Friday November 8 Yoshihide Wada defended his PhD thesis entitled “Human and climate impacts on global water resources“.

He obtained his degree Cum Laude (top 3-5%) due to the exceptional quality of his work. The PhD evaluation committee consisted of Prof. Taikan Oki (Tokyo University), Dr. Dieter Gerten (PIK Potsdam), Prof. Arjen Hoekstra (University of Twente), Prof. Stefan Uhlenbrook (UNESCO-IHE and Delf University of Technology and Prof. Lex Bouwman (PBL and Utrecht University). Independent assessment reports were provided by dr. Peter Gleick (Pacific Institute) and Prof. Pavel Kabat (IIASA and Wageningen University).

His PhD, consisting of 14 chapters (12 of which are published or submitted papers), can be downloaded from:



Over past decades, terrestrial water fluxes have been affected by humans at an unprecedented scale and the fingerprints that humans have left on Earthâs water resources are turning up in a diverse range of records. In this thesis, a state-of-the-art global hydrological model (GHM) and global water demand model were developed and eventually coupled to quantify and distinguish human and climate impacts on surface freshwater and groundwater resources. The thesis is composed of three major parts: Part 1. Human and climate impacts on surface freshwater resources; Part 2. Global assessment of groundwater resources; Part 3. Integrated modeling and indicators of global water resources.The thesis first explores the human and climate impacts on seasonal surface freshwater resources by forcing the global hydrological model PCRâGLOBWB with daily meteorological fields and by calculating global monthly water demands with the effects of socio-economic and land use change. Increased water demand was found to be a decisive factor for heightened water stress in various regions, while climate variability is often a main determinant of extreme events. Over Europe, North America and Asia, severe hydrological drought conditions are driven by increasing consumptive water use rather than to be merely induced by climate variability; the magnitude of droughts intensified by 10-500%.Next, the thesis assesses global groundwater resources by estimating groundwater recharge and abstraction. Global groundwater depletion was found to triple in size over the last 50 years, and contributes ~20% to irrigation water supply. Groundwater stress was then assessed using newly developed indicators considering groundwater contribution to environment. The global groundwater footprint was found to be 3.5 times the actual area of aquifers driven by a few heavily overexploited aquifers. The aquifer stress indicator revealed that ~8% of transboundary aquifers are currently stressed due to human overexploitation. Importantly, groundwater depletion was found to be an important contributor to sea-level rise and is likely to dominate over those of other terrestrial water sources. The contribution of groundwater depletion to sea-level increased by more than ten-fold over 1900-2000, and is projected to increase further by 2050.In the final part of this thesis, an improved modeling framework that dynamically simulates daily water use per source per sector was developed. Human impacts on terrestrial water storage signals were evident in the validation with GRACE satellite observation, altering the seasonal and inter-annual variability over heavily regulated and intense irrigated basins. The newly developed model together with other six state-of-the-art GHMs was applied to simulate future irrigation water demand using the latest CMIP5 climate projections. The increase in irrigation demand varies substantially depending on the degree of global warming and associated regional precipitation changes. GHM dominates the uncertainty throughout the century, but GCM uncertainty substantially increases from the mid-century. To comprehensively assess global water resources, an improved approach was introduced. The Green Water Stress Index is capable of reproducing varying degrees of green water stress conditions, reflecting a multi-decadal climate variability. The Blue Water Sustainability Index revealed an increasing trend of water consumed from nonsustainable surface water and groundwater resources (~30%) worldwide.

Publication: global flood risk mapping

Lead by dr. Philip Ward of VU University Amsterdam and in co-operation with the research institutes Deltares and PBL (Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency), members of our group published the first global map of fluvial flood risk (both hazard as well as costs) for a range of return periods:

Ward, Ph.J. B. Jongman, F. Sperna Weiland, A. Bouwman, L.P.H. van Beek, M.F.P. Bierkens, W. Ligtvoet and H.C. Winsemius, 2013. Assessing flood risk at the global scale: model setup, results, and sensitivity. Environmental Research Letters 8 (4), 044019 doi:10.1088/1748-9326/8/4/044019.

Human water consumption intensifies hydrological drought worldwide

Yohihide Wada et al. published a paper in Environmental Research Letters showing that current water abstraction intensifies hydrological drought in many parts of the world. Results show that human water consumption alone increased global drought frequency by 27 %, where the intensification of drought frequency is most severe over Asia (35%), but also substantial over North America (25%) and Europe (20%). Irrigation is responsible for the intensification of hydrological droughts over the western and central US, southern Europe and Asia, whereas the impact of industrial and households’ consumption on the intensification is considerably larger over the eastern US and western and central Europe.

Find the paper at:

Wada, Y., L.P.H. van Beek, Ni. Wanders and Marc Bierkens, 2013. Human water consumption intensifies hydrological drought worldwide. Environmental Research Letters 8, 034036 (14 pp).

Dwindling global reservoir capacity, future irrigation water demand and more!

New publications from our group:

A new publication by Dominik Wisser et al. reveals that global reservoir capacity has already peaked in 2006, this as a result of the silting up of reservoirs. In a changing climate and under a growing population, decreasing reservoir capacity is a complicating factor if future water demands are to be met. See the publication at:

Wisser, D., S. Frolking, S. Hagen, and M. F. P. Bierkens (2013), Beyond peak reservoir storage? A global estimate of declining water storage capacity in large reservoirs, Water Resources Research 49, doi:10.1002/wrcr.20452.

Yoshihide Wada, Dominik Wisser et al. analysed a multi-model run (multiple global hydrological models and multiple CMIP5 GCM inputs) to assess the change of irrigation water demand until 2100 under various climate scenarios (RCPs as defined for the 5th IPCC report) and a single socio-economic scenario (SSP 2). They found that under RCP 8.5 (the most extreme climate scenario) irrigation water demand increased by 20% on average. An unexpected finding of this study is that the largest source of uncertainty in projecting future irrigation water demand comes from the global hydrological models and not from the climate models or scenarios used. This is both good and bad news. The good news is that Hydrology matters. The bad news is that a lot of work is needed to improve the reliability of hydrological climate change impacts. The work is part of the ISI-MIP project and published in Geophysical Research Letters:

Wada, Y. , D. Wisser, S. Eisner, M. Flörke, D. Gerten, I. Haddeland, N. Hanasaki, Y. Masaki, F. T. Portmann, T. Stacke, Z. Tessler and J. Schewe (2013), Multimodel projections and uncertainties of irrigation water demand under climate change,Geophysical Research Letters, 10 SEP 2013, DOI: 10.1002/grl.50686.

In a recent paper in Water Resources Research, Walter Immerzeel and scientists from ETH Zürich analyzed the uncertainty in glacio-hydrological modellling in the Himalaya. They found that the effect of parametric uncertainty often exceeds the impact of climate uncertainty and natural climate variability, especially in heavily glacierized subcatchments. This means that further research into processes and parameterization of Glaci-hydrological models is necessary if progress is to be made in projecting the fate of Himalayan glaciers. See:

Ragettli, S., F. Pellicciotti, R. Bordoy, and W. WImmerzeel (2013), Sources of uncertainty in modeling the glaciohydrological response of a Karakoram watershed to climate change,Water Resources Research 49, doi:10.1002/wrcr.20450.

Arthur Lutz published a paper comparing climate change effects on the extent of Central Asian Glaciers (in the upstream parts of the Amu and Syr Darya, important for e.g. Aral Sea influx). Particular attention is paid to developing a dynamic glacier model that can be used in large-scale hydrological applications.

Lutz, A. F., W.W. Immerzeel, A. Gobiet, F. Pellicciotti, F. and M.F.P. Bierkens, 2013. Comparison of climate change signals in CMIP3 and CMIP5 multi-model ensembles and implications for Central Asian glaciers, Hydrology and Earth System Science 17, 3661-3677.


Check out our newest publications!

Check out these new publications from members of our group that recently appeared on line:

Vannametee, E., D. Karssenberg, M. R. Hendriks and M. F. P. Bierkens, 2013. Hortonian runoff closure relations for geomorphologic response units: evaluation against field data. Hydrology and Earth System Science 17, 2981-3004.

Candogan-Yossef, N, H. Winsemius, A. Weerts, R. van Beek, and M. F. P. Bierkens, 2013. Skill of a global seasonal streamflow forecasting system, relative roles of initial conditions and meteorological forcing. Water Resources Research 49, doi:10.1002/wrcr.20350.

Sutanudjaja, E.H., S.M. de Jong, F.C. van Geer, M.F.P. Bierkens, 2013. Using ERS spaceborne microwave soil moisture observations to predict groundwater head in space and time. Remote Sensing of Environment 138, 172-188.

New publication on Himalayan glaciers in Nature Geoscience

n a new publication in Nature Geoscience Walter Immerzeel and Marc Bierkens project an increase in runoff from Himalayan catchmants during the 21st century, despite a decline in glacier size.  See why and how on:


or read the Utrecht University press release:


reference: W.W. Immerzeel, F. Pellicciotti en M.F.P. Bierkens, ‘Rising river flows throughout the twenty-first century in two Himalayan glacierized watersheds’, Nature Geoscience, doi:10.1038/ngeo1896, 2013.

Two new publications in AMS Journals

Two new publications appeared in journals of the American Meteorological Society with contributions from our group:

1) In BAMS: a position paper calling for setting up a global drought forecasting infrastructure. Our group may contribute one of the global models that can calculate soil moisture drought and hydrological drought.

Pozzi, W. et al., 2013: Toward global drought early warning capability: expanding international cooperation for the development of a framework for monitoring and forecasting. Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., 94, 776–785. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1175/BAMS-D-11-00176.1

2) In the Journal of Climate: a paper where observed sea-level change is attributed to the various components (ice sheets, glaciers, thermal expansion, terrestrial water storage change), and all possible combinations of different model approaches that yield the same observed sea-level curve are determined to assess uncertainties. Our group is one of the two groups in the world that has contributed data on the effects of terrestrial water storage change (in particular groundwater depletion) on sea-level variation. This study is likely to be an important reference for the sea-level chapter in the next IPCC report:

Gregory, J. M., et al., 2013: Twentieth-century global-mean sea level rise: is the whole greater than the sum of the parts?. J. Climate, 26, 4476–4499.

Fieldwork at Lirung Glacier Nepal

Walter Immerzeel, Steven de Jong and Marc Bierkens have conducted field work at Lirung Glacier in Langtang National Park, Nepal (4000-5000 m amsl).


Marc, Walter and Steven at 5007 m altitude





Using an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) they made overlapping photo’s of the glacier with the goal to construct a digital elevation model (4-10 cm resolution). In October, after the ablation season, Steven de Jong and a student will return for another flight. From the differences between the constructed elevation models they hope to estimate the mass-wasting of the glacier as well as the ice velocity based on advanced feature tracking.

In the same area, the scientists also conduct observations of precipation at various altitude to determine precipitation lapse rates.

The glacier velocities, mass-loss rates and precipiation lapse rates will be used to improve glacio-hydrological models of the area and eventually also large-scale analyses of the water resources in the greater Himalaya region.

See a pdf with a short presentation of the fieldwork and some preliminary results

Our global hydrology papers at EGU 2013

Many of us are at EGU 2013 next week.
Come and see the global hydrology and large-scale hydrology contributions from our group:

Open Session on Climate: Past, Present and Future

Orals Mon, 08 Apr, 08:30–12:00 / Room Y6
How climate change will exacerbate global water scarcity
Jacob Schewe, Jens Heinke, Dieter Gerten, Ingjerd Haddeland, Nigel Arnell, Douglas Clark, Rutger Dankers, Stephanie Eisner, Balázs Fekete, Hyungjun Kim, Xingcai Liu, Yoshimitsu Masaki, Felix Portmann, Yusuke Satoh, Tobias Stacke, Qiuhong Tang, Yoshihide Wada, Dominik Wisser, Torsten Albrecht and the ISI-MIP Team

Poster Session on Open Source Computing in Hydrology 
Poster Summaries & Discussions: PSD19.1 / Mon, 08 Apr, 15:30–16:15 / Room R12 
Attendance Mon, 08 Apr, 17:30–19:00

Large scale stochastic spatio-temporal modelling with PCRaster
Derek Karssenberg, Niels Drost, Oliver Schmitz, Kor de Jong, and Marc F.P. Bierkens

Large scale hydrology

Wed, 10 Apr, 13:30–17:00 / Room R13
Dynamic Attribution of Global Water Demand to Surface Water and Groundwater Resources: Effects of Abstractions and Return Flows on River Discharge
Inge de Graaf, Rens van Beek, Yoshi Wada, and Marc Bierkens 
Upscaling drought information from the catchment scale to the global scale: how seasonality in climate influences drought characteristics
Anne Van Loon, Erik Tijdeman, Niko Wanders, Henny Van Lanen, Adriaan Teuling, and Remko Uijlenhoet

Attendance Wed, 10 Apr, 17:30–19:00
Global scale groundwater flow model
Edwin Sutanudjaja, Inge de Graaf, Ludovicus van Beek, and Marc Bierkens
eWaterCycle: Developing a hyper resolution global hydrological model
Edwin Sutanudjaja, Rolf Hut, Niels Drost, Susan Steele-Dunne, Kor de Jong, Ludovicus van Beek, Derek Karssenberg, Nick van de Giesen, and Marc Bierkens 

Drought and water scarcity: hydrological monitoring, modelling and forecasting to improve water management
Orals      / Thu, 11 Apr, 08:30–12:00 / Room R6
Future hydrological drought in the context of water scarcity
Henny A.J. van Lanen and Niko Wanders

Merging hydrologic models and Earth Observation data for reliable information on water (co-organized) 

Attendance Thu, 11 Apr, 17:30–19:00 
eWaterCycle: real time assimilation of massive data streams into a hyper-resolution global hydrological model
Rolf Hut, Edwin Sutanudjaja, Niels Drost, Susan Steele-Dunne, Kor de Jong, Ludovicus van Beek, Nick van de Giesen, and Marc Bierkens

Ensemble hydro-meteorological forecasting for improved risk management: across scales and applications (co-organized)   


Thu, 11 Apr, 13:30–17:00 / Room R6
Skill of a global seasonal ensemble streamflow forecasting system
Naze Candogan Yossef, Hessel Winsemius, Albrecht Weerts, Rens van Beek, and Marc Bierkens 

Drought and water scarcity: hydrological monitoring, modelling and forecasting to improve water management   

Thu, 11 Apr, 08:30–12:00 / Room R6
Seasonal Predictability of Water Scarcity at the Global Scale
Albrecht Weerts, Hessel Winsemius, Emanuel Dutra, Joost Beckers, Reinder Brolsma, Rens van Beek, Florian Pappenberger, Rogier Westerhoff, and Marc Bierkens

Remote sensing of soil moisture

Attendance Thu, 11 Apr, 17:30–19:00
The benefits of using remotely sensed soil moisture in parameter identification of large-scale hydrological models
Niko Wanders, Marc F.P. Bierkens, Steven M. de Jong, Ad de Roo, and Derek Karssenberg

Hydrology for decision-making: the value of forecasts, predictions, scenarios, outlooks and foresights 


Attendance Fri, 12 Apr, 10:30–12:00
Water2Invest: Global facility for calculating investments needed to bridge the climate-induced water gap
Menno Straatsma, Peter Droogers, Jairus Brandsma, Wouter Buytaert, Derek Karssenberg, Karen Meijer, Maaike van Aalst, Rens van Beek, Yoshihide Wada, and Marc Bierkens 

Review and visionary paper by Lex Bouwman co-authored by members of our group

Prof Lex Bouwman of the Netherlands Environmental Agency and  the Geochemistry group of Utrecht University published a paper in Biogeosciences, reviewing the various approaches used to model local to global scale nutrient dynamics in rivers, lakes and wetlands as well various river ecological concepts to describe the impact of disturbances on aquatic ecosystems. He proposes to merge concepts from river ecology and river biogeochemistry to build a global integrated framework that is able to explicitly calculate nutrient dynamics, transfer and retention from headwater to the ocean. Global hydrological models such as PCR-GLOBWB developed by our group are instrumental in this synthesis of approaches.

The paper is freely downloadable from http://www.biogeosciences.net/10/1/2013/bg-10-1-2013.html


Commentary in Nature Geoscience about Asian’s Water Balance

We recently published a commentary in Nature Geoscience explaining the multifaceted approach to needed to assess Asian’s water resources and its resilience to change:


pdf upon request.


See also the special feature on water from Nature Geoscience and Nature Climate Change:


where this commentary and the Groundwater and Climate review are part of. 

Our recents efforts to model terrestrial hydrology and human impacts at (very) high resolution

The Following initiatives are underway in higher resolution modelling

PCR-GLOBWB 2.0: in development.  It operates at 6 minutes globally and is coded in PCRaster-Python.  In PCR-GLOBWB 2.0 we will fully integrate the PCR-GDEM water demand calculations and then add at run-time demand-driven water withdrawal, consumptive water use and return flows as part of the global hydrological cycle.

South America at 6 minutes

Discharge of South America (year 2000) as simulated at 6 minutes (10 km) with PCR-GLOBWB 2.0.

logo eWaterCycle

We just started working on PCR-GLOBWB 3.0. This will be a hyper-resolution parallelized version of PCR-GLOBWB having the features of version 2.0 with the intention to model the terrestrial water cycle at 1 km or below. We also attach a groundwater flow model to this version. We are working together with the TU Delft in the NWO/Surf fundedcprogram eWaterCycle. We expect first results in 2013.

Publication on potential of PCR-GLOBWB for seasonal forecasting

he ability to use PCR-GLOBW in a seasonal forecasting framework as compared to runoff climatology and Re-analysis P-E is investigated:

Candogan-Yossef, N., L.P.H. van Beek, J.C.J. Kwadijk and M.F.P. Bierkens, 2012. Assessment of the potential forecasting skill of a global hydrological model in reproducing the occurrence of monthly flow extremes. Hydrology and Earth System Sciences 16, 4233-4246.

New publication on global surface water temperature (download the data now!)

See our new publication about global modelling of fresh surface water temperature using PRR-GLOBWB. Important for ecology and biogeochemistry:

Van Beek, L. P. H., T. Eikelboom, M. T. H. van Vliet, and M. F. P. Bierkens (2012),
A physically based model of global freshwater surface temperature, Water Resources Research 48, W09530.


Data can be downloaded from our data viewer: http://www.globalhydrology.nl/maps/

See us at EGU2012!

The following papers will be presented at the next EGU meeting in Vienna, from Monday 23th of April to Friday 27th of April

Oral Programme Mon, 23 Apr, 15:30–17:00 / Room 38 15:30–15:45 EGU2012-2055 Non-sustainable groundwater sustaining irrigation - a global assessment Y. Wada, L.P.H. van Beek, and M.F.P. Bierkens

Oral Programme Mon, 23 Apr, 13:30–17:00 Room 33 16:00–16:15 EGU2012-13081 Patterns and Pathways of Evolving Catchment Response in a Medium-Sized Mediterranean Catchment on a Millennium Scale L.P.H. van Beek and M.F.P. Bierkens

Oral Programme Wed, 25 Apr, 13:30–17:00 Room 36 15:45–16:00 EGU2012-5338 Using high-resolution soil moisture modelling to assess the uncertainty of microwave remotely sensed soil moisture products at the correct spatial and temporal support N. Wanders, D. Karssenberg, M.F.P. Bierkens, J.C. Van Dam, and S.M. De Jong

Oral Programme Thu, 26 Apr, 08:30–10:00 Room 36 09:45–10:00 EGU2012-6629 Can we monitor groundwater head variation from space? Coupling ERS spaceborne microwave observations to groundwater dynamics E.H. Sutanudjaja, S.M. de Jong, F.C. van Geer, and M.F.P. Bierkens

Oral Programme Thu, 26 Apr, 15:30–17:00 Room 2 16:30–16:45 EGU2012-2765 Automated geomorphological mapping using Multiple Point Geostatistics E. Vannametee, L.V. Babel, D. Karssenberg, J. Schuur, M.R. Hendriks, and M.F.P. Bierkens

Oral Programme Fri, 27 Apr, 08:30–12:00 Room 3 09:30–09:45 EGU2012-13141 (invited) Modelling Landscape Dynamics in a Highland Mediterranean Catchment: Establishing the impact of Climate Variation and Human Activity L.P.H. van Beek, H. Feiken, T.W.J. van Asch, and M.F.P. Bierkens

Poster Programme Attendance Mon, 23 Apr, 17:30–19:00 Hall A A165 EGU2012-2008 Value assessment of a global hydrological forecasting system N. Candogan Yossef, H. Winsemius, L.P.H. van Beek, E. van Beek, and M.F.P. Bierkens

Poster Programme Attendance Tue, 24 Apr, 17:30–19:00 Hall Z Z96 EGU2012-4320 Early-warning signals (potentially) reduce uncertainty in forecasted timing of critical shifts D. Karssenberg and M.F.P. Bierkens

Poster Programme Attendance Tue, 24 Apr, 17:30–19:00 Hall A A199 EGU2012-1988 The effects of groundwater abstraction on low flows I.E.M. de Graaf, L.P.H. van Beek, Y. Wada, and M.F.P. Bierkens

Poster Programme Attendance Wed, 25 Apr, 17:30–19:00 Hall A A169 EGU2012-6138 Human water consumption intensifies hydrological drought worldwide M. F. P. Bierkens, Y. Wada, D. Wisser, N. Wanders, and L. P. H. Van Beek

New publications: one about changes in global hydrology due to climate change and one about the role of evaporation

Sperna Weiland, F. C., L.P.H. van Beek, J.C.J Kwadijk and M.F.P. Bierkens, 2012. Global patterns of change in discharge regimes for 2100. Hydrology and  Earth System Science 16, 1047-1062. Sperna Weiland, F.C., C. Tisseuil, H.H. Dürr, M. Vrac, and L.P.H. van Beek, 2012. Selecting the optimal method to calculate daily global reference potential evaporation from CFSR reanalysis data for application in a hydrological model study, Hydrology and Earth System Science 16, 983-1000.

New publications: on ensemble averaging and why global hydrology matters

Sperna Weiland, F.C., L.P.H. van Beek, A.H. Weerts and M.F.P. Bierkens, 2012. Extracting information from an ensemble of GCMs to reliably assess future global runoff change. Journal of Hydrology 412–413, 66-75. Sperna-Weiland, F. C., L. P. H. van Beek, J. C. J. Kwadijk and M. F. P. Bierkens, 2012. On the Suitability of GCM Runoff Fields for River Discharge Modeling: A Case Study Using Model Output from HadGEM2 and ECHAM5. Journal of Hydrometeorology 13, 140–154.

Two new publications about global water stress and groundwater depletion

The following publications just came out: