Software Solutions and Methodology
Natural-resource managers and stakeholders face difficult challenges when managing interactions between natural and societal systems. Potential changes in climate could alter interactions between environmental and societal systems and adversely affect the availability of water resources in many coastal communities. The availability of freshwater in coastal streams can be threatened by saltwater intrusion. Even though the collective interests and computer skills of the community of managers, scientists and other stakeholders are quite varied, there is an overarching need for equal access by all to the scientific knowledge needed to make the best possible decisions. This paper describes a decision support system, PRISM-2, developed to evaluate salinity intrusion due to potential climate change along the South Carolina coast in southeastern USA. The decision support system is disseminated as a spreadsheet application and integrates the output of global circulation models, watershed models and salinity intrusion models with real-time databases for simulation, graphical user interfaces, and streaming displays of results. The results from PRISM-2 showed that a 31-cm and 62-cm increase in sea level reduced the daily availability of freshwater supply to a coastal municipal intake by 4% and 12% of the time, respectively. Future climate change projections by a global circulation model showed a seasonal change in salinity intrusion events from the summer to the fall for the majority of events.
Figures & Tables
Integrated Environmental Modelling to Solve Real World Problems: Methods, Vision and Challenges
The discipline of Integrated Environmental Modelling (IEM) has developed in order to solve complex environmental problems, for example understanding the impacts of climate change on the physical environment. IEM provides methods to fuse or link models together, this in turn requires facilities to make models discoverable and also to make the outputs of modelling easily visualized.
The vision and challenges for IEM going forward are summarized by leading proponents. Several case studies describe the application of model fusion to a range of real-world problems including integrating groundwater and recharge models within the UK Environment Agency, and the development of ‘catastrophe’ models to predict better the impact of natural hazards. Communicating modelling results to end users who are often not specialist modellers is also an emerging area of research addressed within the volume. Also included are papers that highlight current developments of the technology platforms underpinning model fusion.