Mountainous regions in Central Asia are vulnerable to consequences of climate change. Taking appropriate decisions for allocation of water over communities, the environment and key economic sectors such as agriculture and energy, is increasingly challenging due to economic and population growth as well as climate-induced changes in hydrological regimes in Central Asia’s main transboundary river basins.

WE-ACT proposes to establish a climate sensitive Decision Support System for water allocation in two sub-catchments of a transboundary river basin in Central Asia, namely the Naryn and Kara Darya catchments of the Syr Darya river basin (covering parts of Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan).

Based on an innovative water information system that captures a thorough understanding of water availability, demand, footprint and allocation in a glacier-fed river basin, WE-ACT will enable water managers to interact with an accessible and intuitive DSS to alleviate water stress for communities, the economy and the environment on the short- and long-term. WE-ACT will enable them to adapt the allocation of water resources to the known and expected effects of climate change, while encouraging the improvement of policies to correctly set water tariffs, reduce water footprints and increase water use efficiency in agriculture and energy sectors.

The backbone of the project is a reliable data supply chain based on real-time monitoring, integrated water demand-, availability- and use modelling approach, machine-learning, and data storage in a transboundary context. This will be matched with an in-depth understanding of water policies and priorities that face increasing pressures of climate change, growing demand and water dependency.

End-users of the project (hydrometeorological stations, integrated models, DSS for water allocation) will be carefully mapped, invited, involved and trained to establish and use meaningful results from the outset of the project.

Project funding: EU Horizon Europe Framework Programme (HORIZON)

Project start: 01.01.2023

Project end: 31.12.2026

Project partners: Technical University of Munich (DE) (Project Lead), International Water Management Institute (LK/UZ), University of Twente (NL), University of Würzburg (DE), Central Asian Institute for Applied Geosciences (KG), University of Fribourg (CH), Brunel University London (UK), Nelen & Schuurmans (NL), FutureWater SL (NL/SP), HEADES BV (BE), Inosens DOO Novi Sad (RS), Bavarian Research Alliance (DE), Portolan Association (CH)

Project Coordination: Dr. Jingshui Huang, Prof. Dr. Markus Disse

Project Staff: M. Sc. Timo Schaffhauser, M. Sc. Lucas Alcamo

More information: https://weact-project.eu/