The potential use of climate forecasts by community water system managers

This study investigates the possible use of climate forecasts by Pennsylvania Community Water System (CWS) managers for planning and decision making. The first phase involves analysis of data from a mail survey to identify managers most likely to use climate forecasts. The second phase uses semi-structured interviews with the managers of large surface-water systems to determine the extent to which they currently use forecasts, the circumstances in which they would be most likely to integrate forecasts into their planning, and the formats that would encourage them to use forecasts. Analysis of the survey data demonstrates that managers of the largest systems are more likely to use forecasts than managers of smaller systems. The interviews reveal that theses VWS managers do not currently use climate forecasts for planning, even under extreme drought, but that there are circumstances in which they would consider doing so. In a broader context, the findings suggest that when scientists work with decision-makers, they should be prepared, first to learn about the decision-making context, then to put the information of concern into that context and, finally, to work closely with the decision-makers to help them gain experience using that information.

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Journal Article
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Land Use and Water Resources Research, Volume 06
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 Record created 2017-04-01, last modified 2018-01-22

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