Hydrologic Extremes in a Changing Climate: a Review of Extremes in East Africa

This review presents recent research on drivers and typologies of climate extremes across different East African geographies. Droughts and floods remain the major challenges of the region. There are improvements in forecasting these extremes, but further research is required to improve understanding of key drivers and improve information provision for risk-based decision-making.

Environmental isotopes (δ 18O–δ 2H, 222Rn) and electrical conductivity in backtracking sources of urban pipe water, monitoring the stability of water quality and estimating pipe water residence time

In this paper, environmental isotopes and electrical conductivity are used to investigate water quality variations in the urban piped water network of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The isotopic signature of the water allows the back-tracking of tap water to its source and also provides insights into pipe water residence time for groundwater-sources supplies. The tracers reveal that 50% of the city relies on groundwater, and that groundwater-sourced water supplies show the highest water quality instability. One important cause of water quality variation in the city is borehole stoppages and reconnection as a result of electricity cuts.

Evaluating the effects of geochemical and anthropogenic factors on the concentration and treatability of heavy metals in Awash River and Lake Beseka, Ethiopia: arsenic and molybdenum issues

This study assesses heavy metal and pollution sources within the Awash River Basin, in Ethiopia. In this region, significant urbanization and industrialization have caused pollutants to enter water bodies on a large scale. After finding high levels of heavy metals across surface water sampling stations, the study advocates for increased efforts towards water security within the Addis Ababa and Awash watershed region.

Evaluating the structures and arrangements of water institutions to include in-stream modeling for water quality management and control pollution: Insights from the Awash Basin, Ethiopia

In sub-Saharan regions, human activities are causing stream water quality to decline. This study assesses stream water quality issues in the Awash Basin of Ethiopia, identifying key sources of land-based pollutants. Applicable models with the capability of simulating the Awash streams are presented, and recommendations towards improved use of water quality modelling for development planning by Awash Basin institutions are made.

Information synthesis to identify water quality issues and select applicable in-stream water quality model for the Awash River basin in Ethiopia: A perspective from developing countries

In-stream water quality models can help prepare effective planning strategies to tackle problems with stream water quality and understand pollutant dynamics in stream systems. In this study, water quality issues in the Awash Basin were reviewed to select an applicable in-stream model to support local model practitioners in creating improvement in water quality management. QUAL2KW and INCA models are found more applicable for the present conditions, while the WASP model may be useful to conduct detailed analysis.

Assessing heavy metal contamination using biosensors and a multi-branch Integrated Catchment Model in the Awash River Basin, Ethiopia

The Awash River Basin in Ethiopia faces rising heavy metal concentrations due to poor wastewater management and loose enforcement of regulations around effluent discharge. Acute toxicity of surface and wastewater samples was measured using new molecular biosensor technology based on engineered luminescent bacteria. A multi-branch Integrated Catchment model (INCA) simulating tannery discharge under different treatment scenarios indicates that a 50% reduction in effluent concentrations could produce a 20 to 50% reduction in heavy metal concentration in the river over two years.

Story of Change: Open source tools and skills for climate information flows

Reducing barriers to sharing and making use of climate information is vital for climate resilience. In Ethiopia’s Awash Basin, REACH partners have been working together to build tools to facilitate the use of climate data from weather and streamflow gauging stations. Weekly collaborative coding sessions form a long-term capacity building interaction.

Spatio-temporal variability and potential health risks assessment of heavy metals in the surface water of Awash basin, Ethiopia

Increasing urbanization and industrialization in the Awash River basin, Ethiopia, is impacting water quality. Physico-chemical and heavy metal spatio-temporal variability and associated risks to human health and ecology were assessed across twenty sampling stations. Contamination indicators suggest variable but significant health risks to people exposed to untreated water in the sampled area, including cancer risk from heavy metals which enter basin waters due to human activities and natural erosion.

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