Modeling the role of páramo in mountain hydrology under climate change

Staff: Escobar, M. ; Fencl, A. ; Flores, F. ; Purkey, D. ; Davis, M.
Date: 2012-ongoing

This project applies a WEAP model to the Piura páramo in Peru as a pilot for modelling páramos in other Andean countries, aiming to enhance understanding of páramos' ecological functions in the context of mountain hydrology.

Despite páramo (moorland) ecosystems' importance as water sources, their hydrology has not been adequately studied. The meteorological and hydrological data for páramo areas are almost nonexistent, and scientific literature is scarce. However, some existing studies in the Piura region of Peru provide a baseline of information for a hydrologic model that represents the role of these ecosystems in the regional hydrology.

This project is funded through the World Bank-financed programme Adaptation to the Impact of Rapid Glacier Retreat in the Tropical Andes (PRAA). Research partners include the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) in Boulder, CO, and the Universidad Nacional Agraria La Molina, in Lima, Peru.