The chief objectives of this project were to enhance understanding of the advantages and disadvantages of the various approaches to short-term water demand forecasting and to provide practical guidance to water utilities in choosing, implementing, and evaluating forecasting methodologies. The project focused on prediction over a time horizon of less than ten years intended to inform decisions regarding budgeting, revenue planning, rate design, program implementation, and efficient management of system operations.
Three deliverables were developed to achieve the project objectives:
Improving the Accuracy of Short-Term Water Demand Forecasts (#4501A), consists of evaluations of forecasts created by the six participating water utilities or by the researchers to illustrate the advantages and disadvantages of various short-term demand forecasting methodologies.
The Short-Term Water Demand Forecasting Manual (#4501B) is designed to serve as reference material for water utilities that wish to develop short-term consumption forecasts. The manual was created from a review of 53 published forecast evaluations, 9 years of El Paso Water Utilities' data to demonstrate several alternative estimation and forecasting practices, and a survey of utility practices. The manual appendices include sources of data for water demand forecasting, online resources for reviewing statistical concepts, software packages with forecasting capabilities, and demonstrations of data analysis and forecasting techniques in Microsoft Excel.
Finally, the Short-Term Water Demand Planning and Forecasting Survey documents forecasting practices currently employed by water utilities (posted below under Project Papers).
Three articles about this project have been published in Journal AWWA. The articles are posted below under Project Resources/Project Papers.
Research partner: UK Water Industry Research Limited. Published in 2017.