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Climate 2016, 4(2), 16;

Assessing Climate Impacts on Hydropower Production: The Case of the Toce River Basin

Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Politecnico di Milano, Milan 20133, Italy
ENEL S.p.A.-Energy Management Division, Mestre 30172, Italy
Institute for Environmental Sciences, University of Geneva, Geneva 1205, Switzerland
Centre for Environmental Policy, Imperial College London, London SW7 1NA, UK
Wegener Center for Climate and Global Change (WEGC), University of Graz, Graz 8010, Austria
Central Institute for Meteorology and Geodynamics (ZAMG), Graz 8053, Austria
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Daniele Bocchiola, Guglielmina Diolaiuti, Claudio Cassardo and Yang Zhang
Received: 22 January 2016 / Revised: 8 March 2016 / Accepted: 11 March 2016 / Published: 23 March 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Impact of Climate Change on Water Resources)
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The aim of the presented study is to assess the impacts of climate change on hydropower production of the Toce Alpine river basin in Italy. For the meteorological forcing of future scenarios, time series were generated by applying a quantile-based error-correction approach to downscale simulations from two regional climate models to point scale. Beside a general temperature increase, climate models simulate an increase of mean annual precipitation distributed over spring, autumn and winter, and a significant decrease in summer. A model of the hydropower system was driven by discharge time series for future scenarios, simulated with a spatially distributed hydrological model, with the simulation goal of defining the reservoirs management rule that maximizes the economic value of the hydropower production. The assessment of hydropower production for future climate till 2050 respect to current climate (2001–2010) showed an increase of production in autumn, winter and spring, and a reduction in June and July. Significant change in the reservoir management policy is expected due to anticipation of the date when the maximum volume of stored water has to be reached and an increase of the reservoir drawdown during August and September to prepare storage capacity for autumn inflows. View Full-Text
Keywords: alpine basin; climate change; hydrological impact; hydropower production alpine basin; climate change; hydrological impact; hydropower production

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Ravazzani, G.; Dalla Valle, F.; Gaudard, L.; Mendlik, T.; Gobiet, A.; Mancini, M. Assessing Climate Impacts on Hydropower Production: The Case of the Toce River Basin. Climate 2016, 4, 16.

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