Water Supply Stress Index (WaSSI)


swirling_water.pngForest ecosystems provide many benefits and services, including clean water essential for life on Earth. Water supplies control plant growth and carbon storage to help regulate climate, as well as the variety of plant and animal species that exist in an ecosystem. Water availability and carbon sequestration are closely related ecosystem services that are influenced by human and environmental factors. To help natural resource planners and managers evaluate the balances and tradeoffs between these ecosystem services and make informed decisions in light of changing environmental conditions, Eastern Threat Center scientists have developed a web-based assessment tool known as the Water Supply Stress Index (WaSSI) model.

WaSSI can predict how climate, land cover, and human population change may impact water availability and carbon sequestration at the watershed level and across the lower 48 United States, Mexico, Rwanda, and Burundi. WaSSI users can select and adjust temperature, precipitation, land cover, and water use factors to simulate an unlimited number of global change scenarios for user-determined timeframes through 2100. Simulation results are available as downloadable maps, graphs, and data files that users can apply to their unique information and project needs.

View the WaSSI fact sheet and user guide in English or Spanish to learn more. Begin exploring WaSSI, and provide feedback to support WaSSI's ongoing development.


For more information, please contact Ge Sun, Eastern Threat Center research hydrologist, at gesun@fs.fed.us or (919) 515-9498.

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