David Yates


Boulder, CO
yates@ucar.edu
303-497-8394

David Yates is a Scientist in the Research Applications Laboratory at the National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder Colorado and an SEI Associate located in Boulder, Colorado. His research has focused both on local scale hydrologic problems (flash floods, land use-land cover, climate change), as well as climate change impacts and adaptation on water and agricultural systems. Dr. Yates has been a part of the development team of SEI's Water Evaluation and Planning model and has focused on applying WEAP to help water utilities with long-range planning that includes climate change impacts and adaptation strategies. With his NCAR colleague, Kathleen Miller and support from the Water Research Foundation, Dr. Yates developed an educational primer for use by the drinking water utility industry that outlines the current state of scientific knowledge regarding the potential impacts of global climate change on water utilities, including impacts on water supply, demand and relevant water quality characteristics. A follow-on study with The Foundation has focused on robust adaptation strategies, with several utilities, including the Inland Empire, El Dorado Irrigation District, Portland Water, Colorado Springs Utilities, Massachusetts Water Resource Authority, Durham Water, and Palm Beach County Water.

David Yates received his PhD in Civil and Environmental Engineering from the University of Colorado, Boulder in 1996.


Recent Publications by David Yates

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Water-energy nexus challenges & opportunities in the Arabian Peninsula under climate change

Poster presented at the American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, San Francisco, 12-16 December 2016

Author(s): Flores, F. ; Yates, D. ; Galaitsi, S. ; Binnington, T. ; Dougherty, B. ; Vinnaccia, M.; Glavan, J.C.
Year: 2016

Research Area(s): Water Resources

Description:

This conference poster presents the results of a study of the water-energy nexus in countries in the Arabian Peninsula, using a coupled WEAP-LEAP model. Demand for water in the Gulf Cooperation Council countries relies mainly on fossil groundwater resources and desalination. Satisfying water demand requires a great deal of energy, as it requires treating and moving water along the supply chain from sources, through treatment processes, and ultimately to the consumer. As part of the Abu Dhabi Global Environmental Data Initiative (AGEDI) Local, National, and Regional Climate Change Programme, a study of the water-energy nexus of the countries in the Arabian Peninsula was implemented. For water, WEAP models both water demand – and its main drivers – and water supply, simulating policies, priorities and preferences. For energy, LEAP models both energy supply and demand, and is able to capture the impacts of low-carbon development strategies. A coupled WEAP-LEAP model was then used to evaluate the future performance of the energy-water system under climate change and policy scenarios. The models examined five policy scenarios of different futures of resource management to the year 2060.


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Addressing Climate Change in Local Water Agency Plans: Demonstrating a Simplified Robust Decision Making Approach in the California Sierra Foothills

RAND Corporation Research Report RR-491-CEC

Author(s): Groves, D.G. ; Yates, D. ; Mehta, V. ; Bloom, E.; Johnson, D.R.
Year: 2013

Research Area(s): Water Resources

Description: Water agencies are increasingly seeking to address climate change in their long-term planning. Doing so, however, requires moving beyond traditional planning approaches to ones that can incorporate information about future hydrologic conditions, demographic changes, and other management conditions that are deeply uncertain or not statistically well characterized. This report describes an approach for planning under deep uncertainty, called Robust Decision Making (RDM), and demonstrates its application in a research study with the El Dorado Irrigation District (EID), a water agency located in the California Sierra Nevada Mountains. Using RDM, the authors, in collaboration with EID, tested the robustness of their current long-term plan across more than 50 futures reflecting different assumptions about future climate, urban growth, and the availability of important new supplies.
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A water resources model to explore the implications of energy alternatives in the southwestern U.S.

Environmental Research Letters 8(4), 045004

Author(s): Yates, D. ; Flores, F. ; Sieber, J. ; Young, C. ; Averyt, K.; Meldrum, J.; Sattler, S.
Year: 2013

Research Area(s): Water Resources

Description: This article documents the development and validation of a climate-driven, southwestern-U.S.-wide water resources planning model that is being used to explore the implications of extended drought and climate warming on the allocation of water among competing uses. These model uses include a separate accounting for irrigated agriculture; municipal indoor use based on local population and per capita consumption; climate-driven municipal outdoor turf and amenity watering; and thermoelectric cooling. The model simulates the natural and managed flows of rivers throughout the southwest, including the South Platte, the Arkansas, the Colorado, the Green, the Salt, the Sacramento, the San Joaquin, the Owens, and more than 50 others.
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Integrated impacts of future electricity mix scenarios on select southeastern U.S. water resources

Environmental Research Letters 8(3), 035042

Author(s): Yates, D. ; Flores, F.
Year: 2013

Research Area(s): Water Resources

Description: This article presents the application of an integrated electricity generation-water resources planning model to three river basins in Georgia, Alabama, and Florida, based on the regional energy deployment system (ReEDS) and the water evaluation and planning (WEAP) system. A future scenario that includes a growing population and warmer, drier regional climate shows that benefits from a low-carbon, electricity fuel-mix could help maintain river temperatures below once-through coal-plants. These impacts are shown to be localized, as the cumulative impacts of different electric fuel-mix scenarios are muted in this relatively water-rich region, even in a warmer and drier future climate. A related article in the same issue describes the development, calibration, and validation of the model.
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A water system model for exploring electric energy alternatives in southeastern U.S. basins

Environmental Research Letters 8(3), 035041

Author(s): Flores, F. ; Yates, D.
Year: 2013

Research Area(s): Water Resources

Description: This article documents the development, calibration, and validation of a climate-driven water resource systems model of the Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint, the Alabama-Coosa-Tallapoosa, and the Tombigbee River basins in the states of Georgia, Alabama, and Florida, in the southeastern U.S. The model represents different water users, including power plants, agricultural water users, and municipal users. The model takes into account local population, per-capita use estimates, and changes in population growth. The water resources planning model was calibrated and validated against the observed, managed flows through the river systems of the three basins. Flow calibration was performed on land cover, water capacity, and hydraulic conductivity of soil horizons; river water temperature calibration was performed on channel width and slope properties. The implementation of this model is explored in a companion paper in the same issue.


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