Water supply poses a challenge in Azerbaijan due to uneven distribution of water resources both seasonally and spatially (USAID, 2017). Although uncertainty abounds regarding the forecast levels of precipitation in Azerbaijan in future decades, increased temperatures are likely to lead to greater evaporation of water resources and reduced river flows, putting pressure on one of Azerbaijan’s main sources of freshwater (USAID, 2017). Moreover, water shortages are likely to coincide with an increased need for irrigation (due to higher temperatures and changes in length of growing season). This impact will be more severe in certain regions of Azerbaijan, and could reduce crop yields. This effect may be exacerbated if the existing issues in water distribution (such as leaks in the system) are not addressed (World Bank, 2012). The increase in temperature associated with climate change will also lead to more rapid glacial melt, which would increase the risk of downstream flooding, landslides and mudslides (USAID, 2017).
This section provides insights into projected climate change impacts on various hydrological indicators.