In 2008, the University of Delaware Water Resources Agency embarked on a project to quantify the impact of global warming on Delaware water resources. Peer – reviewed, scientific studies by the International Panel on Climate Change and others have determined that warming of the earth’s atmosphere has changed the hydrologic cycle. Warming causes more evaporation leading to more frequent and intense storms and droughts and more water use.
Phase I of the project involves a nation-wide literature search and synopsis of published literature on the topic.
Phase II includes recommendations on future research needed to address the impacts of global warming on Delaware. Warming has the potential to impact the following areas of Delaware’s water resources:
- Delaware: Climate Change Impact Assessment
- Water supply and demand forecasts
- Sea level rise
- Stream water quality
- Wetland loss
- Salinity of the Delaware Bay
- Habitat of water dependent flora and fauna
- Floodplain management
- Stormwater management