MoMo II - Influences of global change on water resources in central Asia, Mongolia and in the Kharaa river basin; Thematic module 1: Hydrology and land use


Mongolia has been selected as a model region for the development, analysis, and implementation of an integrated water resources management (IWRM) in Central Asia. The first part of the project (2007-2009) has been conducted in the river basin of Kharaa (incl. city of Darkhan). Priority problems have been identified, in-situ conditions been reported and different pathways to proceed have been identified together with the Mongolian partners. In terms of an IWRM approach, an integrative analysis of the topics hydrology, land use, climate, limnology, water use, drinking water supply and wastewater disposal has been conducted (q.v. MoMo-project).

The second project phase focuses on the implementation of specific IWRM items. The selection criteria are based on the results of phase one, the priorities purported by the Mongolian partners, as well as the financial development potential aid by third parties (particularly Asian Development Bank, World Bank and KfW).

The realization of the project is planned in four working packages. These have been coordinated in form and content inter alia in five workshops (Ulaanbaatar in November 2008, June 2009, September 2010 and Magdeburg in February 2009, and June 2010). In particular, the networking of the co-operation partners in Germany and Mongolia has explicitly been elaborated. The eight working packages of MoMo phase I have been downsized and transferred into thematic modules. The following modules have been developed for phase two:

Thematic module 1: hydrology and land use

Thematic module 2: water quality and limnology

Thematic module 3: ground water and drinking water

Thematic module 4: wastewater treatment and –recovery

Furthermore, there are two cross-section modules which will be a common task for all MoMo partners. These cross-section modules will be managed by the project coordination.

Cross-section 1: monitoring, data and modeling

Cross-section 2: capacity development and environmental information


The work of the CESR focuses on large scale simulations of water resources and use in Central Asia. In MoMo II the multi-scale transferability of hydrological processes from the river basin (Kharaa) scale to the country (Mongolia) and regional (Asia) scale will be carried out. The goal of this spatiotemporal high resolution large scale modeling is the analysis and prognosis of historic, current, and future water availability for anthropogenic and ecological purposes.

The compilation of most basic input data, model adaptation and first model runs has been completed in phase one (MoMo I). Within MoMo II a daily resolution instead of a monthly (MoMo I) will be implemented in the applied hydrology and water use model WaterGAP3. Another main focus is the application of transient climate scenarios which are currently being developed in further CESR research projects (e.g. WATCH).

WaterGAP3 will be further developed in order to examine and analyze all river basins in Mongolia and the other Central Asia countries. Therefore, the results of MoMo I are of utmost importance. By the application of three different hydrological models (HBV-D, TRAIN, WaterGAP) on two different spatial scales, hydrological processes in this semi-arid environment have been detected that are implemented in WaterGAP3 but only in a very conceptual way. To get a more realistic representation of water fluxes in Central Asia these process descriptions will be in the focus of the further development of WaterGAP3.

Another research aspect focuses on the transferability of the MoMo I IWRM concept to other river basins in Central Asia with respect to socio-economic and infrastructural characteristics.

All results will be bundled and targeted to be used in a web-based geographic information system (Web-GIS) and provided to the Mongolian national Water Authority (WA).

Additional LINKS


BMBF funding priority IWRM:

Funding agency


Project duration

May 2010  −  April 2013

Project management

Frank Voß

Project staff

Tim Aus der Beek
Marcus Malsy


u.a.: Ruprecht Karls Universität Heidelberg, Institut für Geographie; Helmholtz-Zentrum für Umweltforschung-UFZ, Department Aquatische Ökosystemanalyse, Department Landschaftsökologie; terrestris GmbH & Co. KG