Water Scenarios for Europe and for Neighbouring States.


SCENES is a a four year Integrated Project under the EU 6th framework program which aims at developing and analysing a set of comprehensive scenarios of Europe’s freshwater futures up to 2050. These pan-European scenarios will cover all of Europe to the Ural Mountains and the Mediterranean rim countries. The scenarios will provide a reference point for long-term strategic planning of European water resource development, alert policymakers and stakeholders about emerging problems, and allow river basin managers to test regional and local water plans.

The SCENES project will deliver combined qualitative and quantitative scenarios. The qualitative scenarios (storylines) provide a picture of how water resources in different parts of Europe may develop up to 2050. The quantitative scenarios, produced by models, complement the storylines by providing numerical information, and by enriching the qualitative scenarios by showing trends and dynamics not apparent in the storylines.

Scenarios will be interactive and adaptive in the sense that they will be developed through a three phase approach. The first phase will be a “fast track” scenario exercise using existing information derived from global or regional scenarios. The second phase will involve regional and pilot area scenario enrichment. The final phase will be the drawing together of results and dissemination of the scenario outputs.


The main activities of CESR are realised in work package "Models and Methods" (WP3), in which the Center also takes the leading role. Within WP3, the project group carries out pan-European modelling of water use sectors and water availability as well as land use changes to support the development of pan-European scenarios. Here the large-scale models WaterGAP and LandSHIFT are used to project an image of a plausible future regarding water resources and land use. In the second phase of SCENES both models have been improved to provide numerical information for the scenario analysis on the pan-European scale. In particular, the development of a large-scale water quality model, the implementation of a database on dams and their management, and the linkage of WaterGAP and LandSHIFT has been of most interest. The following activities have been carried out in WP

  • Compilation of European database on sectoral water use (update of the base year to 2005).
  • Implementation of a pan-European dataset on dams and reservoirs in WaterGAP and derivation of generic reservoir management rules. (ELDRED2 - European Lakes and Reservoir Database as developed and provided by the European Environmental Agency (EEA)).
  • Development of a new version of the irrigation module to calculate crop-specific water requirements: soft-coupling of LPJmL, LandSHIFT and WaterGAP.
  • Improving the domestic water use model to simulate current and future tourism water use, including the preparation of a tourism density map for allocating the water uses.
  • Preparation of a modelling tool to support the environmental flow analysis.
  • Development of a large-scale water quality model (WorldQual).
  • To carry out pan-European model simulations regarding water availability, water use and water quality.
  • Modelling of cropland and irrigated areas.

Through the close link between WP3 with other SCENES work packages, CESR also contributes to WP1, WP2, WP4 and WP5. The following section briefly describes the activities within these work packages:

  • WP1 "Drivers and Policy Measures": CESR acts as a link between storyline development and modeling by quantifying the main driving forces.
  • WP2 "Storyline Development": CESR is involved in the qualitative storyline development.
  • WP4 "Analysis of Impacts": Providing model results as well as indicator development.
  • WP5 "Support for Policies": Conceptual design with regards to the content of the WebService.



Funding agency


Project duration

November 2006  −  October 2010

Project management

Ilona Bärlund
Martina Flörke

Project staff

Ellen Kynast
Christof Schneider
Anja Voß
Frank Voß