Dr. Louis H. Motz

Louis H. Motz

Dr. Motz currently is Associate Professor Emeritus of Civil Engineering in the Department of Civil and Coastal Engineering at the University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida. His research has included investigating saltwater intrusion and the recirculation of seawater in coastal aquifers, including studying the impacts of sea-level rise and other aspects of global climate change. Project sponsors for his research have included the National Science Foundation, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the U.S. Geological Survey, the Scientific & Technological Research Council of Turkey (TÜBİTAK), and state agencies and water management districts in Florida.

He has taught courses in groundwater hydraulics, analytical and numerical groundwater modeling using MODFLOW, MT3DMS, and SEAWAT, water resources engineering, fluid mechanics, engineering hydrology, and groundwater geology, and he has authored more than 130 refereed journal publications and research and technical reports. He currently is an Associate Editor for the Journal of Hydrologic Engineering and the Journal of Groundwater.

Prediction of Climate Change Impacts on the Mersin Coastal Aquifer System

Louis H. Motz

Department of Civil and Coastal Engineering

University of Florida

Gainesville, Florida, USA 32611

Zübeyde Hatipoğlu-Bağcı

Department of Geological Engineering

Mersin University, Ciftlikkoy, 33343

Mersin, Turkey

ABSTRACT

The impacts that climate change will have on the Mersin Coastal Aquifer System were investigated based on changes in sea level, temperature, and precipitation predicted for the South Europe/Mediterranean region by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in the Fifth Assessment Report (AR5). These predictions are for four climate-change scenarios described as Representative Concentration Pathways (RCP’s) RCP2.6, RCP4.5, RCP6.0, and RCP8.5. A SEAWAT groundwater flow and transport model was developed to predict changes in hydraulic heads and salinity concentrations from the year 2000 to 2100 subject to the cumulative impacts that sea-level rise, increased temperature and evapotranspiration, and decreased recharge will have on the aquifer system. As a result of the increased surface temperature predicted in the South Europe/ Mediterranean region for the four climate-change scenarios and decreased precipitation predicted in the South Europe/ Mediterranean region for three of the four climate- change scenarios, the net recharge (precipitation – evapotranspiration) to the Mersin Coastal Aquifer System will be reduced in all four climate-change scenarios and may be zero as early as the 10-year period 2041-2050 in the most extreme climate-change scenario (RCP8.5). Net recharge in the Taurus Mountains also will be reduced in all four climate-change scenarios and may be reduced by nearly 30 percent in climate-change scenario RCP8.5 in 2091-2100. Based on the SEAWAT model simulations, hydraulic heads in the Mersin Coastal Aquifer System will change by relatively small amounts near the seacoast in response to sea-level rise but will progressively decrease by greater amounts at locations closer to the Taurus Mountains, where significant reductions in recharge and inflow from the Taurus Mountains are predicted, particularly for climate-change scenario RCP8.5. Also, total dissolved solids (TDS) concentrations in the Mersin Coastal Aquifer System are predicted to increase near the seacoast in response to sea-level rise and saltwater intrusion, increasing by a factor of 2 or greater in climate-change scenario RCP8.5, but will be unaffected farther inland in all four climate-change scenarios.

This study and presentation are supported by TÜBİTAK (Project Numbers: 1059B211404291 and 1059B211900015)

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