Back
 JWARP  Vol.8 No.2 , February 2016
Some Characteristics and Impacts of the Drought and Water Crisis in Southeastern Brazil during 2014 and 2015
Abstract: Since the austral summer of 2014 southeastern Brazil has been experiencing one of the most severe droughts in decades. This rainfall deficiency has generated water shortages and a water crisis that have affected population and local economies in the metropolitan region of Sao Paulo, the largest megacity in South America. By January 2015, main reservoirs had reached storage levels of only 5% of their 1.3 billion m3 capacity. The meteorological causes of the drought situation were linked to changes in the regional circulation, characterized by a mid-troposphere blocking high that lasted 45 days during the summer of 2014 over southeastern Brazil, something not seen in five decades. The water crisis was aggravated by a combination of lack of rainfall and higher temperatures, the summer of 2014 being the warmest and driest over the Cantareira reservoir system since 1951. Increasing population and water consumption increased vulnerability in the region, and while human-induced warming may not have generated the atmospheric conditions behind the 2014 and 2015 summer droughts in Southeast Brazil, it is more likely that the warm temperatures have affected the severity of the drought and exacerbated the impacts on the population.
Cite this paper: Nobre, C. , Marengo, J. , Seluchi, M. , Cuartas, L. and Alves, L. (2016) Some Characteristics and Impacts of the Drought and Water Crisis in Southeastern Brazil during 2014 and 2015. Journal of Water Resource and Protection, 8, 252-262. doi: 10.4236/jwarp.2016.82022.
References

[1]   DAEE (2013) Macrometrópole. Sumario Executivo-Plano Diretor de Aproveitamento de Recursos Hídricos para a Macrometrópole Paulista. Departamento de Aguas e Energia Elétrica (DAEE). Secretaria de Planejamento e Desenvolvimento Regional, Secretaria do Meio Ambiente, Secretaria de Saneamento e Recursos Hídricos. Governo do Estado de São Paulo, São Paulo, Brasil, 44 p. [Macrometropole: Executive Summary-Director Plan for Utilization of Water Resources in the Megacity of Sao Paulo. Department of Waterand Electric Energy (DAEE). Secretary for Planning and Regional Development, Secretary of Environment, Secretary of Sanitation and Water Resources. Government of the State of Sao Paulo.]

[2]   Cavalcanti, I.F.A. and Kouksy, V.E. (2001) Drought in Brazil during Summer and Fall of 2001 and Associated Circulation Features. Climanalise, 1, 1-10.
http://climanalise.cptec.inpe.br/~rclimanl/revista/pdf/criseing.pdf

[3]   Coelho, C.S., Cardoso, D.F. and Firpo, M.F. (2015) Precipitation Diagnostics of an Exceptionally Dry Event in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Theoretical and Applied Climatology, 1-16.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00704-015-1540-9

[4]   Coelho, C.S., Oliveira, C., Ambrizzi, T., Reboita, M., Carpenedo, C., Campos, J., Tomaziello, A., Pampuch, L., Custodio, M.S., Dutra, L., Da Rocha, R. and Rehbein, A. (2015) The 2014 Southeast Brazil Austral Summer Drought: Regional Scale Mechanisms and Teleconnections. Climate Dynamics, 1-16.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00382-015-2800-1

[5]   Seth, A.K., Fernandes, K. and Camargo, S. (2015) Two Summers of Sao Paulo Drought: Origins in the Western Tropical Pacific. Geophysical Research Letters, in Press.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/2015GL066314

[6]   Silva, W.L., Nascimento, M.A. and Menezes, W.F. (2015) Atmospheric Blocking in the South Atlantic during the Summer 2014: A Synoptic Analysis of the Phenomenon. Atmospheric and Climate Sciences, 5, 386-393.
http://dx.doi.org/10.4236/acs.2015.54030

[7]   Rozante, J.R., Moreira, D.S., de Goncalves, L.G.G. and Vila, D.A. (2010) Combining TRMM and Surface Observations of Precipitation: Technique and Validation over South America. Weather and Forecasting, 25, 885-894.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1175/2010WAF2222325.1

[8]   Obregón, G.O., Marengo, J.A. and Nobre, C.A. (2014) Rainfall and Climate Variability: Long-Term Trends in the Metropolitan Area of São Paulo in the 20th Century. Climate Research, 61, 93-107. http://dx.doi.org/10.3354/cr01241

[9]   Marengo, J.A., Alves, L.M., Espinoza, J.C. and Ronchail, J. (2014) Tropical South America East of the Andes [in “State of the Climate in 2014”]. Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, 95, S170-S171.

[10]   Getirana, A. (2015) Extreme Water Deficit in Brazil Detected from Space. Journal of Hydrometeorology, 17, 591-599.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1175/JHM-D-15-0096.1

[11]   Espinoza, J.C., Marengo, J.A., Ronchail, J., Molina, J., Noriega, L. and Guyot, J.L. (2014) The Extreme 2014 Flood in South-Western Amazon Basin: The Role of Tropical-Subtropical South Atlantic SST Gradient. Environmental Research Letters, 9, Article ID: 124007.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1088/1748-9326/9/12/124007

[12]   Oliveira, F.N.M. (2011) A Climatology of Southern Hemisphere Blockings: Observations, Simulations of the 20th Century and Future Climate Change Scenarios. PhD Dissertation, Institute of Astronomy, Geophysics and Atmospheric Sciences, University of Sao Paulo, Brazil, 158 p. (In Portuguese)

[13]   Oliveira, F.N.M., Carvalho, L.M.V. and Ambrizzi, T. (2014) A New Climatology for Southern Hemisphere Blockings in the Winter and the Combined Effect of ENSO and SAM Phases. International Journal of Climatology, 34, 1676-1692.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/joc.3795

[14]   Hartmann, D.L. (2015) Pacific Sea Surface Temperature and the Winter of 2014. Geophysical Research Letters, 42, 1894-1902.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/2015GL063083

[15]   Wang, H. and Schubert, S. (2014) Causes of the Extreme Dry Conditions over California during Early 2013 [in “Explaining Extreme Events of 2013 from a Climate Perspective”]. Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, 95, S7-S11.

[16]   Diffenbaugh, N.S., Swain, D.L. and Touma, D. (2015) Anthropogenic Warming Has Increased Drought Risk in California. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 112, 3931-3936.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1422385112

[17]   Collini, E., Berbery, E., Barros, V. and Pyle, M. (2008) How Does Soil Moisture Influence the Early Stages of the South American Monsoon? Journal of Climate, 21, 195-213.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1175/2007JCLI1846.1

[18]   Otto, F.E.L., Coelho, C.A.S., King, A., Coughlan de Perez, E., Wada, Y., van Oldenborgh, G.J., Haarsma, R., Haustein, K., Uhe, P., van Aalst, M., Aravequia, J.A., Almeida, M.W. and Cullen, H. (2015) Factors Other than Climate Change, Main Drivers of 2014/15 Water Shortage in Southeast Brazil [in “Explaining Extremes of 2014 from a Climate Perspective”]. Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, 96, S35-S40.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1175/BAMS-EEE_2014_ch8.1

[19]   Porto, R.L., Porto, M.F.A. and Palermo, M. (2014) A ressurreição do volume morto do Sistema Cantareira na Quaresma [The Resurrection of the Dead Volume in the Cantareira System during the Lent]. Revista DAE, 62, 18-25.
http://dx.doi.org/10.4322/dae.2014.131

[20]   UNICA (2015) Centre for Food Storage and Market Distribution of the State of São Paulo (CEAGESP), the Brazilian Citrus Association, the Cereal Stock Market of São Paulo and the Brazilian Union of Sugar Cane Producers.
http://www.unica.com.br/

[21]   Munich Re (2015) Natural Catastrophes 2014. Analyses, Assessments, Positions. TOPICS-GEO 2014, Munich, 67 p.

[22]   King, D., Schrag, D., Zhou, D., Ye, Q. and Ghosh, A. (2015) Climate Change: A Risk Assessment—Risk Assessment Part 3: Systemic Risks. Hynard, J. and Rodger, T., Eds., Centre for Social Science and Policy, London, 110-111.

[23]   Swiss-Re (2015) Natural catástrofes and Man-Made Disasters in 2014: Convective and Winter Storms Generate Most Losses. Swiss Re Ltd-Economic Research and Consulting, Zurich, Swiss Re-Sigma No. 2/2015, 52 p.

[24]   Marengo, J.A. and Alves, L.M. (2015) Crise Hídrica em São Paulo em 2014: Seca e Desmatamento [Water Crisis in Sao Paulo in 2014: Drought and Deforestation]. GEOUSP, USP-Sao Paulo. (In Press)

 
 
Top