Key Publications

Abstract: This study evaluates General Circulation Models (GCMs) participating in the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 6 (CMIP6) for their ability in simulating historical means and extremes of daily precipitation (P), and daily maximum (Tmax), and minimum temperature (Tmin). Models are evaluated against hybrid observations at 2255 sub-basins across Alberta, Canada using established statistical metrics for the 1983–2014 period. Three extreme indices including consecutive wet days (CWD), summer days (SD), and warm nights (WN) are defined based on the peak over the threshold approach and characterized by duration and frequency. The tail behaviour of extremes is evaluated using the Generalized Pareto Distribution. Regional evaluations are also conducted for four climate sub-regions across the study area. For both mean annual precipitation and mean annual daily temperature, most GCMs more accurately reproduce the observations in northern Alberta and follow a gradient toward the south having the poorest representation in the western mountainous area. Model simulations show statistically better performance in reproducing mean annual daily Tmax than Tmin, and in reproducing annual mean duration compared to the frequency of extreme indices across the province. The Kernel density curves of duration and frequency as simulated by GCMs show closer agreement to that of observations in the case of CWD. However, it is slightly (completely) overestimated (underestimated) by GCMs for warm nights (summer days). The tail behaviour of extremes indicates that GCMs may not incorporate some local processes such as the convective parameterization scheme in the simulation of daily precipitation. Model performances in each of the four sub-regions are quite similar to their performances at the provincial scale. Bias-corrected and downscaled GCM simulations using a hybrid approach show that the downscaled GCM simulations better represent the means and extremes of P characteristics compared to Tmax and Tmin. There is no clear indication of an improved tail behaviour of GPD based on downscaled simulations.

Abstract: The streamflow of Brahmaputra River Basin is vital for sustainable socioeconomic development of the Ganges delta. Frequent floods and droughts in the past decades indicate the susceptibility of the region to climate variability. Although there are multiple studies investigating the basin's future water availability, most of those are based on limited climate change scenarios despite the wide range of uncertainties in different climate model projections. This study aims to provide a better estimation of projected future streamflow for a combination of 18 climate change scenarios. We develop a hydrologic model of the basin and simulate the future water availability based on these climate change scenarios. Our results show that the simulated mean annual, mean seasonal and annual maximum streamflow of the basin is expected to increase in future. By the end of the 21st century, the projected increase in mean annual, mean dry season, mean wet season, and annual maximum streamflow is about 25, 178, 11, and 22%, respectively. We also demonstrate that this projected streamflow can be expressed as a multivariate linear regression of projected changes in temperature and precipitation in the basin and would be very useful for policy makers to make informed decision regarding climate change adaptation.

Abstract: Nonstationary flood frequency analysis (NFFA) has increasingly been applied to predict future floods under climate change. The inference of nonstationarity from trend tests (INTT) on historical floods is a widespread practice used to justify the application of NFFA; however, its reliability has seldom been investigated. This research examines future floods from interpretations of INTT compared to those obtained from cause-and-effect processes by a hydrological model (INCE). The study uses INCE to quantify the changes in the regime and magnitude of floods due to potential climate change in the mid-21st century using multi-model ensemble simulations under two greenhouse gas emissions scenarios (i.e., RCP 2.6 and RCP 8.5). Independent peaks over threshold from simulated streamflow were used to estimate the changes in future (2040–2064) flood regimes and magnitudes compared to their historical (1983–2007) counterparts for 29 unregulated catchments across Alberta, Canada. Separation of extreme events and their fittings to generalized Pareto distributions (GPD) were based on a hybrid approach that combined two developed automated threshold selection methods and four estimators for the parameters of the GPD. Based on comparing the results of INTT and INCE, we show that future changes in floods contradict. We also show that the future frequency curves shifted differently at different return periods compared to historical curves, while in some instances, future climate tended to decrease small floods and increase larger floods or vice versa. Finally, flood magnitudes in 2/3 of the studied catchments in Alberta are predicted to intensify, accompanied by increases in the rate of occurrence and earlier shifts in the timing of floods for both climate scenarios, whereas no considerable change in the duration was recognized.

Abstract: The 1996 Ganges Water Sharing Treaty was an important breakthrough in solving disputes over sharing Ganges water between India and Bangladesh. This study evaluates cooperation reflected in the Treaty by performing a quantitative analysis on available water sharing data. The study recognized that inaccurate projection of future flow and the obligation of allocating guaranteed 991 m3/s flows perpetuate the ongoing water sharing conflicts. The provision of guaranteed minimal flow alternately to India and Bangladesh during critical periods leads to frequent occurrences of low-flow events. Results indicated that the Treaty underestimated the impact of climate variability and possibly increasing upstream water abstraction. Statistical analysis of the post-Treaty data (1997–2016) also indicated that 65% of the time Bangladesh did not receive its guaranteed share during critical dry periods with high water demand. It is advised to project the reliable water availability using a combination of modelling and improved observation of river flows. In addition, the condition of minimum guaranteed share should be removed to reduce the frequency of low-flow events in future. Although our analyses show a number of weaknesses, the Treaty could still enhance the future regional cooperation if some adjustments are made to the current terms and conditions.

Abstract: Water availability information can be vital to the execution of informed management decisions. Since only a small fraction of Alberta lakes have surveyed bathymetry data, accurate estimation of lake water availability is often challenging. In this study, we analyzed available bathymetry data from 77 lakes, distributed over six major river basins and five natural regions of Alberta, and developed dimensionless relationships between volume and depth. We compared these relationships with the analytical relationship between volume and depth for five idealized lake shapes, viz. as cylindrical, pseudo-parabolic, parabolic, conic, and inverse-parabolic. Our study shows that considering the volume-depth relationship, 48% of Alberta lakes fall under parabolic shape, 29% fall under conic shape, and the rest (23%) fall under either pseudo-parabolic, inverse-parabolic, or cylindrical shape. We also developed four different models to estimate maximum lake volume (a proxy of lake water availability) and 5% under ice volume (a proxy for winter allocation limit of lake water) assuming an ice thickness of 80 cm. These models have been developed in such a way that allows the user to apply the models based on data availability and can be used in absence of site-specific data (e.g., bathymetry) to estimate volume, and subsequently water availability in lakes. Finally, we propose a formulation of percent volume reduction due to small water withdrawal, which requires only maximum depth of a lake to estimate a potential volume reduction limit for a water withdrawal.

Abstract: A physically based land surface scheme, the Modified Interaction Soil Biosphere Atmosphere (MISBA) of Kerkhoven and Gan (2006) was used to assess the future streamflow of the South Saskatchewan River Basin (SSRB) of Alberta under the combined impacts of climate change and El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO). Potential impacts of climate change on the streamflows of 15 sub-basins of the SSRB for the 2010–2039 (2020s), 2040–2069 (2050s) and 2070–2099 (2080s) were simulated by MISBA based on 30 years (1961–1990) of re-analysis data of the European Centre for Mid-range Weather Forecasts (ERA-40) adjusted with climate scenarios projected by four General Circulation Models (GCMs) for three Special Report on Emissions Scenarios (SRES) emissions (A1FI, A21, B21) of Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Next, the combined impacts of climate change and ENSO are simulated by driving MISBA with the ERA-40 dataset re-sampled for active El Niño and La Niña episodes adjusted for climate projections of 2050s. Under SRES climate projections alone, MISBA simulated an overall decrease in streamflow for sub-basins of SSRB in 2020s, 2050s, and 2080s. While under a combined impact of climate change and ENSO, a further decrease (increase) in the streamflow of SSRB by 2050s was simulated if the climate anomaly considered was El Niño (La Niña).

Abstract: We assessed the future irrigation demand of the South Saskatchewan River Basin (SSRB) of Alberta subjected to combined impact of climate change and El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) using the Irrigation District Model (IDM) of Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development. Based on the agro-climatic data of SSRB of 1928–1995, the potential impact of climate change on SSRB’s irrigation water demand for three future periods, i.e., 2010–2039 (2020s), 2040–2069 (2050s), 2070–2099 (2080s) are simulated by IDM on the basis of Special Report on Emissions Scenarios (SRES) climate scenarios projected by four General Circulation Models (GCMs) of Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). The combined impact on SSRB’s irrigation water demand is also simulated on the basis of SRES climate scenarios together with an active El Niño or La Niña in the 2050s. If only the potential impact of climate change is considered, IDM’s simulations for 2020s, 2050s, and 2080s show a general increasing trend in the irrigation demand in the 21st century for both the irrigation districts and the private irrigation blocks. On the average, water demands for the irrigation districts and private irrigation blocks are expected to increase by 7% and 11% in the 2020s, 12% and 17% in the 2050s, and 13% and 18% in the 2080s, respectively. While considering the combined impact for the 2050s, a further 7% decrease (1% increase) in the irrigation demand is projected under an active El Niño (La Niña) episode.

Abstract: The Modified Interaction Soil Biosphere Atmosphere (MISBA) model, the Water Resources Management Model (WRMM) of Alberta Environment, and the Irrigation District Model (IDM) of Alberta Agriculture Food and Rural Development were used to assess the future outlook of water resource management of the South Saskatchewan River Basin (SSRB) of Alberta under the potential impacts of climate change. Using the SSRB hydrometeorological base data from 1928–1995, potential effects of climate change on the SSRB for 2010–2039, 2040–2069, and 2070–2099 were simulated by MISBA, IDM, and WRMM with the climate scenarios projected by four general circulation models forced by emissions reported by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Under these climate projections, MISBA simulated a significant decrease in the mean annual average and mean annual maximum streamflows over selected nodes within the SSRB; the irrigation water demand projected by IDM is expected to increase progressively over the 21st century; and WRMM simulated changes to the number of deficit years out of 68 years (1928–1995) to specific water sectors of the SSRB. Overall, according to the projections of WRMM, the instream flow requirement of SSRB will either not be affected or will only be marginally affected, but irrigation districts will be progressively affected by climate change. The senior private irrigation users will not be affected by climate change in 2010–2039 and will only be marginally affected in 2040–2069 and 2070–2099. In contrast, junior and future private irrigation users are projected to be progressively affected by climate change. On the other hand, for nonirrigation consumptive uses, all senior, junior, and future licenses may be significantly affected by climate change.

Complete List of Publications

Click to See the Complete List of Publications

| BC-Book Chapter | JP-Journal Paper | TH-Thesis | CP-Conference Proceedings | RP-Report |


2021

Masud, B., Cui, Q., Ammar, M.E., Bonsal, B.R., Islam, Z. and Faramarzi, M. (2021). Means and Extremes: Evaluation of a CMIP6 Multi-Model Ensemble in Reproducing Historical Climate Characteristics across Alberta, Canada. Water, 13(5), p.737. [JP] LINK

2020

Alam, S., Ali, M., Rahaman, A., and Islam, Z. (2020). Multi-model ensemble projection of mean and extreme streamflow of Brahmaputra River Basin under the impact of climate change. Journal of Water and Climate Change 2021; jwc2021286. [JP] LINK

2019

Ammar, M.E., Gharib, A., Islam, Z. et al. (2019). Future floods using hydroclimatic simulations and peaks over threshold: An alternative to nonstationary analysis inferred from trend tests. Advances in Water Resources [JP] LINK

Islam, Z., Seneka, M., Hurley, J., and Tanzeeba, S.(2019). A Hydrologic Model to Estimate Delta Water Availability in Alberta. 24th Canadian Hydrotechnical Conference (CSCE), Laval, 2019 [CP] LINK

Rahman, K., Islam, Z., Navera, U., and Ludwig. F. (2019). A Critical Review of the Ganges Water Sharing Arrangement. Water Policy, 21 (2): 259-276 [JP] LINK

Islam, Z. and Seneka, M (2019). Geometric Shape, Water Availability and Under Ice Volume of Alberta Lakes. Canadian Journal of Civil Engineering, 46(6): 287-298 [JP] LINK

Islam, Z. and Seneka, M. (2019). Peace River Naturalized Flow Model [RP]

2018

Islam, Z. (2018). Classification of El Niño and La Niña Years for Alberta. Canadian Journal of Civil Engineering, 45(12): 1093-1098 [JP] LINK

Islam, Z., Seneka, M., Kerkhoven, E. and Makowecki, L. (2018). Estimating Water Availability and Under Ice Volume of Alberta Lakes using Minimal Data. Proceedings of Annual General Conference, Canadian Society for Civil Engineering (CSCE), Fredericton, 2018 [CP] LINK

Islam, Z., Leidl, C. (2018). 2015 and 2016 Status of Surface Water Quantity for the Lower Athabasca Region, Alberta [RP] LINK

2017

Islam, Z. and Seneka, M. (2017). Reconstruction of Area-Capacity Curves for Alberta Lakes. Proceedings of 23rd Hydrotechnical Conference, Canadian Society for Civil Engineering (CSCE), Vancouver, 2017 [CP] LINK

2016

Alam, S., Ali, M. M., & Islam, Z. (2016). Future Streamflow of Brahmaputra River Basin under Synthetic Climate Change Scenarios. Journal of Hydrologic Engineering, 21(11), 05016027. Link [JP] LINK

Islam, Z., & Gan, T. Y. (2016). Water Allocation Challenges of South Saskatchewan River Basin under the Combined Impacts of Climate Change and El Niño Southern Oscillation. Journal of Water Resources Planning and Management, 142(10), 04016039. Link [JP] LINK

Islam, Z. and Seneka, M. (2016). Development of Generic Shapes of Alberta Lakes to Support Water Policy Development. Proceedings of the Annual General Conference, Canadian Society for Civil Engineering (CSCE), London, 2016. PDF [CP] LINK

2015

Alam, S., Ali, M. M., & Islam, Z. (2015). Potential Impact of Climate Change on Water Availability of Brahmaputra River Basin. Proceedings of the Annual General Conference, Canadian Society for Civil Engineering (CSCE), Halifax, 2015. PDF [CP] LINK

Alam, S., Ali, M. M., & Islam, Z. (2015). Modeling Climate Change Impact on Hydrology of Brahmaputra River Basin Using the Soil Water Assessment Tool (SWAT). Proceedings of the International Conference on Climate Change in relation to Water and Environment (I3CWE-2015), Dhaka, 2015. PDF [CP] LINK

Islam, Z. and Seneka, M. (2015). Development of Alberta Lake Level Index: A Simple Approach. Proceedings of the Annual General Conference, Canadian Society for Civil Engineering (CSCE), Halifax, 2015. PDF [CP] LINK

Islam, Z., & Gan, T. Y. (2015). Hydrologic modeling of the Blue River Basin using NEXRAD precipitation data with a semidistributed and a fully distributed model. Journal of Hydrologic Engineering, 20(10), 04015015. Link [JP] LINK

Islam, Z., & Gan, T. Y. (2015). Potential combined hydrologic impacts of climate change and EL Niño southern oscillation to south Saskatchewan river basin. Journal of Hydrology, 523, 34-48. Link [JP] LINK

Islam, Z., & Gan, T. Y. (2015). Future irrigation demand of South Saskatchewan river basin under the combined impacts of climate change and El Nino Southern Oscillation. Water Resources Management, 29(6), 2091-2105. Link [JP] LINK

2014

Seneka, M., & Islam, Z. (2014). Development of a Simple River Flow Quantity Index for Water Resources Management in Alberta. GEN, 169, 1. PDF [CP] LINK

2013

Islam, Z. (2013). Evaporation and Evapotranspiration: Methods and Application in Alberta. Unpublished Report. [RP] LINK

Islam, Z. (2013). Modeling the Hydrology and Water Resources Management of South Saskatchewan River Basin under the Potential Combined Impacts of Climate Change and Climate Anomalies. PhD Thesis, University of Alberta. Link [TH] LINK

Islam, Z., Khalequzzaman, M. and Alam, S. (2013). Interim Assessment of the Ganges Water-sharing Treaty. International Conference on Water Resource in South Asia: Conflict to Cooperation, Dhaka. PDF [CP] LINK

2012

Islam, Z., & Gan, T. Y. (2012). Effects of climate change on the surface-water management of the south Saskatchewan River basin. Journal of Water Resources Planning and Management, 140(3), 332-342. Link [JP] LINK

Smith, M. B., Koren, V., Zhang, Z., Zhang, Y., Reed, S. M., Cui, Z., …Gan, T, Islam, Z, … (2012). Results of the DMIP 2 Oklahoma experiments. Journal of Hydrology, 418, 17-48. Link [JP] LINK

2011

T. Gan, A. Gobena, Q. Wang, Islam, Z., and Kou, C-C (2011). Precipitation of Southwestern Canada – Wavelet, Scaling, Multifractal Analysis, and Teleconnection to Climate Anomalies. Proceedings of 20th Hydrotechnical Conference, Canadian Society for Civil Engineering (CSCE), Ottawa, 2011. Link [CP] LINK

Islam, Z. and Gan, T. (2011). Effect of Climate Change on Management of Surface Water of South Saskatchewan River Basin. Proceedings of 20th Hydrotechnical Conference, Canadian Society for Civil Engineering (CSCE), Ottawa, 2011. Link [CP] LINK

T. Gan, A. Gobena, Q. Wang, Islam, Z., C-C. and Kou (2011). Low Frequency Variability in Southwestern Canadian Stream Flow: Links with Large-Scale Climate Anomalies. Proceedings of 20th Hydrotechnical Conference, Canadian Society for Civil Engineering (CSCE), Ottawa, 2011. Link [CP] LINK

E. Kerkhoven, T. Gan, C-C. Kou, Islam, Z. (2011). Unconditional Uncertainties of Historical and Simulated River Flows Subjected to Climate Change. Proceedings of 20th Hydrotechnical Conference, Canadian Society for Civil Engineering (CSCE), Ottawa, 2011. Link [CP] LINK

E. Kerkhoven, T. Gan, Islam, Z., C-C. Kou (2011). Potential Hydrologic Impact of Climatic Change to Regional Scale River Basins of Alberta and British Columbia. Proceedings of 20th Hydrotechnical Conference, Canadian Society for Civil Engineering (CSCE), Ottawa, 2011. Link [CP] LINK

Islam, Z. (2011). A Review on Physically Based Hydrologic Modeling. Unpublished Report, University of Alberta. PDF [RP] LINK

Islam, Z. (2011). A Review on Water Resources Management Modeling. Unpublished Report, University of Alberta. PDF [RP] LINK

Islam, Z. (2011). A Review on Climate Change Modeling for Hydrological Impact Studies. Unpublished Report, University of Alberta. PDF [RP] LINK

2010 & Prior

Zobeyer, A. H., Jahan, N., Islam, Z., Singh, G., & Rajaratnam, N. (2010). Turbulence characteristics of the transition region from hydraulic jump to open channel flow. Journal of Hydraulic Research, 48(3), 395-399. Link [JP]

Islam, Z., Riad, T. and El-Daly, M. (2007). Turbulence structure downstream of a forced Hydraulic jump. Unpublished Report, University of Alberta. PDF [RP]

Islam, Z. (2007). Determination of Flood Extent Using Remote Sensing. Unpublished Report, University of Alberta. PDF [RP]

Islam, Z. (2007). River Ice Modelling: Hydraulic Modelling of Mackenzie River at Ft. Province, NWT, Canada. Unpublished Report, University of Alberta. PDF [RP]

M.M Hossain, Islam, Z. S. Ferdousi, M. A. Kabir, K.M. Rahman (2007). Morphological characteristics of Arial Khan river in the vicinity of Arial Khan bridge in Bangladesh. International Conference on Water & Flood Management (ICWFM-2007). PDF [CP]

M.M Hossain, Islam, Z. E. and Mosselman (2006). Applicability of Delft3D on Flow Field simulation around bottom vanes. 15th Congress of APD-IAHR and International Symposium on Maritime Hydraulics. PDF [CP]

MM Hossain, Islam, Z. Md Shahidullah, A de Weerd, P Van Wielink, E Mosselman (2006). Laboratory tests on flow field around bottom vane. Advances in Fluid Mechanics VI. PDF [BC]

Islam, Z. (2005). Investigation of effect of scour hole on flow field around bottom vane using experimental and mathematical modelling techniques. MSc Thesis, Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology. PDF [TH]

Hossain, M.M. and Islam, Z (2005). A review of water resources and flood control initiatives in Bangladesh. International Seminar on Water Resources Management and Flood Control in Bangladesh. PDF [CP]

Islam, Z. (2005). A Numerical Study on Flood Routing by Kinematic Wave Model. MPMD-2005, Disaster Prevention Research Institute, Kyoto University, Japan. PDF [CP]

M.M. Hossain, K.M. Rahman, S. Ferdousi, Islam, Z. and E. Mosselman (2005). Bottom vanes to mitigate erosion hazard in medium sized rivers of Bangladesh. International Conference on Disaster Management Achievements and Challenges. PDF [CP]

Quasem, W.M. and Islam, Z. (2004). A study of rooftop rainwater harvesting method for artificial recharge of Dhaka city. Young Water Research Journal. PDF [JP]

Islam, Z. (2003). Flood Routing by Kinematic Wave Model. BSc Thesis, Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology. PDF [TH]