Hydrology Research Department, Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute (SMHI), Norrköping

Postal address: SMHI, SE-601 76 Norrköping, Sweden
Visiting address: Folkborgsvägen 1
Web page: http://www.smhi.se/en/Research/Research-departments/Hydrology

Contact person: Associate Professor Jonas Olsson, phone: +46 (0)11 495 8322.
                           Jonas Olsson is also affiliated to the Division of Water Resources Engineering (TVRL) at
                           Lund University, where he has been given the title Associate Professor. 

Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute (SMHI) is a government agency under the Ministry of the Environment. SMHI offers products and services that provide various kinds of enterprises and organizations with important foundation for decision-making. General forecasts and weather warnings, industry-specific services, simulations and analyses, statistics, climate studies and contracted research are some examples. SMHI has a long tradition in operational hydrological modelling of river runoff. Existing applications cover aspects like runoff forecasting, spillway design, hydrochemical modelling and fire danger forecasts. At present much model development is focused on applications for climate change effect studies in cooperation with other national and international research groups.

South Asia related research

In February 2012, the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency Sida, announced grants for its Selective Cooperation Partner Driven Cooperation (PDC) programme, with the title ”Use of Research Results Collaboration Grants 2012-2013 in India and Indonesia”. Decisions were taken in late May. The objective of the grants was not to support research, but rather provide support for assisting partners in using research in policy formulation and innovation that can be of particular use for poverty alleviation. The use of research results is fundamental for economic development and successful application of research often results when several actors are involved. PDC aims to stimulate and strengthen the emergence of self-supporting relationships of mutual interest between Swedish partners and partners in selective cooperation countries in order to contribute to poverty reduction and equitable and sustainable global development. 13 projects were approved. Out of them six related to Indonesia collaboration projects, and eight to India. More information.

One of the approved Indo-Swedish collaboration projects was applied by Dr. Jonas Olsson (photo), in charge of the project management, data analysis, and water resources scenarios, and two of his colleagues at SMHI, Associate Professor Berit Arheimer (responsible for stakeholder communication and dissemination) and Dr. Chantal Donnelly (in charge of hydrological modelling and evaluation). The project is entitled ”Assessment of Climate Change Impacts on Water Resources in the Luni River Basin, Rajasthan, India, using CORDEX results”, and it was awarded a grant of SEK 2.1 m.

The collaboration partners on the Indian side are Assistant Professor Devesh Sharma (responsible for project management, data analysis, water resources scenarios), and Professor K. C. Sharma (in charge of data collection, stakeholder communication and dissemination, reporting) at the Department of Environmental Science, Central University of Rajasthan (CURAJ).
CURAJ was established in 2009 by an Act of Parliament. It is fully funded by the Government of India. Presently, the University offers 14 postgraduate programmes which are unique, futuristic in nature and with high job potential. The University aspires to be one of India’s most dynamic and vibrant universities, responsive to the changing global trends, providing unparalleled educational opportunities for the learner community especially for those coming from the lower socio- economic strata of society seeking quality education. It proposes to offer innovative academic programmes as well as continuing personal and professional enrichment in selected areas.

Project abstract: The State of Rajasthan is severely deficient in water resources. Climate change is expected to reduce rainfall and increase evapotranspiration, implying that major rivers will face acute water stress conditions. The purpose of the project is to start a long-term collaboration between the SMHI and the CURAJ in the field of water resources in India with focus on climate change impact assessment. The project will use basic research results in terms of ensembles of projections of future climate change in South Asia developed in the CORDEX South Asia project. Climate projections will be used to study climate change impacts on water resources in the Luni River Basin by setting up and using hydrological model systems. An important objective of the project will be to initiate interaction with local, regional and national stakeholders and scientist on impacts of climate change on water resources.

On 4 November 2014,   Jonas Olsson at the Hydrology Research Department was granted a development research grant from the Swedish Research Council (total amount SEK 3.0 m in three years, 2015-17) for a project entitled ”WaterRAIN-Him: Changes in Water Resources and Adaptation options in the Indian-Himalayan basins”, focusing on how the Indian Himalayan-fed basins region pose extraordinary scientific challenges to understand, quantify and predict availability of water resources. Changes in the climate are already present, whereas the region has experienced land use changes and water exploitation at an unprecedented scale. To improve our comprehension of behaviour of the Indian Himalayan-fed basins (Indus, Ganges and Brahmaputra) and their potential impacts due to environmental changes, i.e. climate, land use and population, we will conduct collaborative hydrological modelling experiments and analysis to better describe, i.e., evapotranspiration, snow melt, water extraction, and hence better meet the societal challenges. Experiments are performed using different hydrological models (assimilating new satellite products), climate projects, and land use and population scenarios to fully assess impacts on the water systems. We will develop holistic and robust adaptation strategies, based on project’s results and end-user dialogs to drive planning for proper and efficient water resources management for food security and poverty alleviation. The project fosters innovative forms of multidisciplinary science, contributes to national initiatives, raises awareness and collaboration in the scientific Indo-Swedish community, and delivers new knowledge with focus on floods, droughts, water status and environmental/societal systems under change.
More information about the South Asia related projects given grants by the Swedish Research Council in November 2014.