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Documento de Trabajo

Working Paper
EGAP-PE-09-01




The Future of Water Availability and Demand in the Metropolitan Area
of Monterrey Mexico




Blanca Flores Arriaga, Lorena Pulido Ramirez, Fabiola Valverde
Zuñiga y Octavio Carrera Santa Cruz





Disclaimer: The author(s) is (are) responsible for all the information contained in
the documents, which do not reflect EGAP’s point of view






Ave. Fundadores y Rufino Tamayo
66269, San Pedro Garza García, Nuevo León, México
1 The Future of Water Availability and Demand in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey
2009
BlancaFlores Arriaga
Lorena Pulido Ramírez
Fabiola ValverdeZuñiga
Octavio Carrera SantaCruz
The Future of Water Availabilityand
Demand in the Metropolitan Area of
Monterrey, Mexico
1 The Future of Water Availability and Demand in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey
2009
BlancaFlores Arriaga
Lorena Pulido Ramírez
Fabiola ValverdeZuñiga
Octavio Carrera SantaCruz
The Future of Water Availabilityand
Demand in the Metropolitan Area of
Monterrey, Mexico
1 The Future of Water Availability and Demand in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey
2009
BlancaFlores Arriaga
Lorena Pulido Ramírez
Fabiola ValverdeZuñiga
Octavio Carrera SantaCruz
The Future of Water Availabilityand
Demand in the Metropolitan Area of
Monterrey, Mexico
2 The Future of Water Availability and Demand in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
The water availability in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey in Mexico represents a
serious potential problem. The vision and development of Monterrey as a “Knowledge City”
makes it more attractive for living –provoking a population increase-, at the time that the lack of
historic memory and population with ecological conscience could create a dangerous
combination. This situation becomes interesting because it involves the vital liquid and it implies
everyone. Besides, the nature of the problem offers interesting possibilities for the development
of a dynamic model. This work will result interesting to any reader and didactic to every student
of future studies and dynamic systems.
The topic development involves the key elements of the system under study (recharge,
storage and different types of consumption) and the fundamental variables that affect them
(evaporation, reuse and ecological conscience), taking in consideration recent data from official
sources, the model allows different runs. These present the risks implied under a -not doing
anything- policy and the improvement on the water availability resultant on the various
possibilities of intervention. The model shows in a clear way, than a consistent reduction on the
domestic consumption extends significantly the water availability. It also evidences that
controlling totally the secondary variables (water reuse and leaks), is desirable and necessary
but it does not resolve the problem by itself. In synthesis, the model evidences than if the right
actions are not taken, the water availability in the Metropolitan Area will be a problem by 2030,
at the time it indicates and dimension the key points involved in a successful intervention.
OVERVIEW AND BACKGROUND
The 70.8% of earth surface is occupied by water, but only 2.5% of all existing water in
the planet is fresh water -which refers to water for human consumption-. However, only 0.5% of
the existing water is available for our consumption, which corresponds to superficial or
subterranean water.
On earth there is about 6,000 millions of people, of which near 20% live in 50 countries
that lack the vital liquid. Predictions are not positive; the UN said in Geneva that 60% of the
global population will live in regions with water scarcity in 2025, if the recent rate of consumption
is maintained that doubles the rate of population increase. The entity defends that fight against
water scarcity is one of the biggest challenges in the XXI century.
The consumption in the majority of European countries fluctuates between 200 and 300
liters per day per person, meanwhile in United States the consumption is of 575 liters, which
contrast with the 25 that some undeveloped zones consume, and the 80 liters that the World
Health Organization recommends for the vital necessities and personal hygiene. Contrasting
with that recommendation, the world average consumption of fresh water per day is 1,800 liters,
if the consumption in activities like agriculture, livestock and industry is added.
In front of a world water scarcity situation, Mexico is not exempt of suffering the effects,
because in the present even when some regions are taking conscience on the vital liquid, in
others the waste is evident. In the country, the average consumption is about 365 liters per day
per person. However, in Mexico City in places like Iztapalapa each person uses 28 liters per
day; in media class sectors like in Benito Juárez delegation the consumption goes from 275 to
410 liters; but in privileged areas like Lomas de Chapultepec the consumption goes from 800 to
1,000 liters per day.
In that aspect, Monterrey has been an example of power in the implementation of
decisions for water care and conservation, in 2007 the consumption was reduce from 350 to
250 liters per day per person in average. However, this is not enough because even when the
consumption per capita has been reduce, Nuevo León as a state, faces specific situations of the
region and the city that affects the offer of water for society, these are: geographic situation,
3 The Future of Water Availability and Demand in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey
because the state is situated in a semi-desertic zone, the constant climatologically fluctuations,
low rate of precipitation and long periods of drought; and the contrast in the infrastructure. The
prediction that indicates a population increase in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey that reflects
on an increase in the water demand is added to the previous list.
Besides of the threats mention before, the over-exploitation of natural sources and the
bad use of the vital liquid enter to the equation. This originates a bigger level of scarcity that
affected in a direct and negative way the quality of life in all sector of the population.
To revert this situation, in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey the entity in charge of the
water and drainage administration (Agua y Drenaje de Monterrey) searched for new sources
that allows the state to increase the water resources, with the development of infrastructure and
media campaigns to develop ecological conscience in the population for a rational and
responsible use of water.
Even when the actions implemented have represent a short term success, is necessary
to considerer that the climatic change, as well as the contamination and above all the population
growth in future years, are threats that attend against the water availability in the Metropolitan
Area because they increase the chances for a scarcity of water with the necessary quality for
human consumption.
OBSERVED TRENDS IN THE METROPOLITAN AREA OF MONTERREY
Population increase
Increase population rates present a decrease in values, but are maintained in positive values.
Increase in the domestic consumption
Fluctuation in the consumption between periods, the variation is explained by seasonal
changes. The general tendency shows an increase in the consumption.
Decrease in the industrial consumption
Fluctuation in the consumption between periods, the decrease could be explained by the use of
treated water in the industry.
Stagnation in the increase of the storage capacity
From 2002, the infrastructure destine to storage the resource has not been increase.
Decrease in the total number of recharge sources
Water wells and springs wear decrease in number.
Decrease in the total of treated water
Fluctuation in the treated water between months.
SEQUENCE FOLLOWED IN THE PROJECT
4 The Future of Water Availability and Demand in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey
PROJECT OBJECTIVE
Due to population growth and increasing demand for drinking water in the Metropolitan
Area of Monterrey, a dynamic model will be used to help identify the key elements which must
work to ensure the availability of water to meet demand of different types of consumers.
HYPOTHESIS TO PROVE
The hypothesis establish that the availability of the vital fluid will decrease , reaching a
critical level in a period of 30 years, because even when it is a resource that can be
regenerated, the maximum capacity is being overtaken by current consumption. This is mainly
due to population growth in the city.
CAUSAL LOOP DIAGRAM AND THE STORY BEHIND FEEDBACK LOOPS
The conceptualization and representation of the project was elaborated under a series of
assumptions which are presented below:
1. Water consumption of the Metropolitan Area depends more on domestic consumption
and industrial consumption, which includes the commercial consumption. The
agricultural and public consumption are not considered in the project.
2. Only the number of people will affect the amount of infrastructure investment for water
that the government will intend to use.
3 The Future of Water Availability and Demand in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey
Story behind the feedback loops
Negative Cycles:
The causal diagram consists of two negative cycles, the first starts with the water
available that represents our variable of interest (also called "State of the System" in the
bibliography). This cycle, B1 (negative cycle) represents the behavior of the water available in
the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey, the administration responsible of providing this service and
of developing the infrastructure necessary to keep quantities of water stored to satisfy the
demands of the citizens is “Agua y Drenaje de Monterrey”.
The behavior is as follows:
The more water available,
The service of supply water is maintain stable and the total demand of the population that is
composed of domestic and industrial consumption increases,
So the water stored in the infrastructure built for this decline,
And the water available to satisfy the demand will decrease as a result of the decrease in the
storage capacity and water treatment.
The stored water varies according to the efficiency in water management, if the system
has more leakage the stored water will decline, this behavior is represented in the cycle B2
(negative cycle). This cycle represents the behavior of the stored water, based on the
percentage of leakage in the system for storage and distribution.
The behavior is as follows:
The more water stored,
The higher the percentage of leakage because the flow of water through the system and its
distribution ring increases,
So the stored water will be reduced.
Positive Cycles:
The diagram also has positive cycles that impact the variable of total demand of water,
which has from one side the impact of the domestic consumption and the other side the
industrial consumption that includes commercial consumption. The industrial consumption
increases as the industry in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey grow, this behavior is
represented in the cycle R1 (positive cycle). This cycle represents the behavior of the industry in
the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey, based on the rate of industrial growth.
The behavior is as follows:
The more industry,
Higher industrial growth as the development will attract other companies,
So there will be more industries.
In determining the industrial consumption also is consider the reuse of water, influenced
by the amount of water available. The more water available, the lower the reuse of water so the
industrial consumption will increase.
The domestic consumption is growing as the population in the Metropolitan Area of
Monterrey does, this behavior is represented in the cycle R2 (positive cycle). This cycle
represents the behavior of the population in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey, based on the
6 The Future of Water Availability and Demand in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey
percentage of population growth. This reflects the growth that the MAM has experienced among
other factors like the migration, as a result of the attraction campaigns of the government.
The behavior is as follows:
The more population,
The population growth rate will be higher,
So the population will be each time bigger.
In determining the domestic consumption also enters in consideration the rationalization in
domestic consumption as a result of the development of an ecological conscience. At a higher
environmental awareness and ecological conscience, the rationalization of water resources will
increase and the domestic consumption will be reduced. Also the rationalization is influenced by
the amount of water available in the system. The more water available, the lower the water
rationalization will be and the domestic consumption will be higher.
FORRESTER DIAGRAM
The Forrester diagram is a graphical representation of a system, which defines the
blocks and their relations, the inputs and outputs, the accumulations. In it is possible to reflect a
reality and model (after feeding equations in the simulator) different scenarios in a defined
horizon of time. The block diagram of the project is composed by 33 variables.
7 The Future of Water Availability and Demand in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey
SIMULATION RESULTING GRAPHS
Available Water:
In the following chart the performance of
the variable called “Available water” is
shown, as you can see for 22 years the
water simulation shows a downward
trend. In the early years of simulation, the
quantities of water and the consumer
behavior provoked a marked decrease in
water availability, the resources are not
sufficient for the demand of the
population, this trend of decrease is
unsustainable and could represent a crisis
in the future if it is ignored.
Available Water versus Population and Industry:
To the behavior of available water in
the chart presented above, two
variables that may explain this trend
are added. As shown in the figure,
consumption (both domestic and
industrial) show an upward trend that
causes that available water resources
are not sufficient to meet demand and
consequently decrease annually until
the available water reach a critical
point. Population and industry growth
is determined by their respective
growth rates, a change in that long-
term value could reverse the trend.
Domestic Consumption:
The chart represents the behavior of domestic
consumption, which depends on the
population taken into the MAM and the speed
at which it increases. The behavior of these
two shows upward trends, which determines
the total population in the region and also
domestic consumption. The four variables
show an upward trend, which represents a
challenge in the management of water
resources particularly if the behavior of
domestic consumption is not accompanied by
an increase in the capacity of water recharge.
8 The Future of Water Availability and Demand in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey
Industrial Consumption:
In the previous chart the behavior of
industrial consumption is shown, it depends
on the overall industry that is in the MAM
and the speed at which it increases. The
behavior of these two shows upward trends,
which determines the total industry-
commerce in the region and turn industrial
consumption. The four variables show an
upward trend, which represents a challenge
in the management of water resources
similar to the expressed for the domestic
consumption. The increase in water
treatment can mitigate this behavior.
Water Leaks:
The following chart shows the performance
of the variable “Water leaks”, which is
determined by a certain percentage of
available water. As you can see in the chart
water leaks show similar trend to the variable
water available as they are dependent on it.
Thus, over the years, the total water wasted
by mismanagement of the fluid resource
decreases, not by the improvement in this
process that would represent a decrease in
the rate of leakage, but by the decline in
water resources.
Sensitivity Analysis
According with John D. Sterman, this analysis helps to identify those parameters and
relationships to which the behavior and policy recommendations are sensitive. Parameters that
do not significantly affect the results need not to be estimated with high accuracy, allowing
focusing the limited resources on those factors that do matter so they can be modeled and
estimated more accurately. As results of this test, in the model were identify two important
variables: “Rate of population growth with and ecological conscience” and “Leakage rate”.
Rate of population growth with and ecological conscience:
Currently in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey the growth rate of the population with
water awareness is 3%, according to research carried out by the team, it was decided to set up
as a parameter an initial rate of awareness to 8%; due to the impact that resources earmarked
for water saving campaigns and international publicity of environmental awareness could
achieve a 5% increase in the current rate. It was also established, such as setting a minimum of
1% growth rate represents a most disappointing, not only represents a high population growth
9 The Future of Water Availability and Demand in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey
which is not aware if the possibility that a percentage of the population back to excessive
consumption of water resources. Both scenarios are feasible, the parameters vary between 3%
each. The chart shows the results of the sensitivity runs generated by the simulator; the image
shows the behavior of water available to change the initial value of people with conscience.
The different curves represent each of the following statutes:
1. -1% annual growth in the population with ecological conscience for water care.
2. 2% annual growth in the population with ecological conscience for water care.
3. 5% annual growth in the population with ecological conscience for water care.
4. 8% annual growth in the population with ecological conscience for water care.
Water Leakage rate:
The MAM loses about 36% of available water by leaks. Through our research, we
established 40% as top of water loss by leaks, depending mainly of shorting in maintenance
funds. On the other side, we defined 25% as an optimistic but achievable indicator for water
loss by leaks through right investments both in maintenance and infrastructure. Next, the
sensibility test results graph (through simulator) shows the available water trend depending of
water leaks rate.
The different curves represent each of the following statutes:
1. 25% available water lost by leakage.
2. 30% available water lost by leakage.
3. 35% available water lost by leakage.
4. 40% available water lost by leakage.
10 The Future of Water Availability and Demand in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey
SCENARIOS
Scenarios are tools to manage the perception of alternative futures and let through the
deep understanding of each potential turnout to learn about possible futures. These alternatives
are developed based on the combination of assumptions, facts and trends. For the construction
of the scenarios presented in following paragraphs, the methodology of the axes of Peter
Schwartz was followed. The tool of the founder of Global Business Network (GBN) has made
great roots in organizations of various fields.
The key variables and their values to evaluate in the axis are presented in the table below:
Variables Description
A Water Leakage rate
(+) 25% of available water lost through leakage.
(-) 40% of available water lost through leakage.
B
Rate of population growth with
an ecological conscience.
(+) 8% of annual growth in population with an ecological
conscience for water care.
(-) -1% of annual growth in population with an ecological
conscience for water care.
In the following chart is possible to observe four different scenarios resulting from the
methodology for constructing scenarios of Peter Schwartz. The two key variables identified as
key forces (driving forces) are: a) Water Leakage rate and b) Rate of population growth with an
ecological conscience for water care.
11 The Future of Water Availability and Demand in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey
Scenarios Description
Scenario1: “Water takes the shape of its container”
The availability of water in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey is one of the best and more
convincing proofs of the measures applied with a systematic approach and long term vision. It is
said that what is done or what it is not done in education matter pays or charges with high
interests in the long term and here is a good example.
Monterrey went through several crisis related to water, so at the end of 20 century it did
great infrastructure works –specifically the Cuchillo dam- that significantly increase its storage
capacity. It was clear that it would solve the problem, but it was not enough in the long term,
because in a complementary way, it started a program named “Culture of Water”, with a scope
based in social marketing at every level, that progressively changed and turned into a
permanent and institutionalized educational campaign that is part of the educational programs in
every public and private school of MAM.
The practical and effective coordination and collaboration between the different actors
involved: “Agua y Drenaje de Monterrey”, the Minister of Education, the Municipalities, the
public and private education centers, as well as the main communication media work for this
and the rest of the issues of priority (security, education, trash, etc.) The project was designed
with a scope of “Our City” in which was taken into advantage the great promotion and visibility
that Santa Lucia drive gave to a family drive of great summon with an artificial river, showing its
attractiveness, its benefits and, -at the same time- the implied caring of water.
The marketing and the educational programs aligned and coordinated around the care of
water achieve progressively to demolish the consumption per capita of water from 300 to 150
liters daily per person, achieving an increase of the “conscious index” of 8% sustained, being
both data a reference at a world level.
In a parallel way, the programs and actions of maintenance in the supply chain and
conduction of water have achieved the decrease of the leak index from 36% that was a
“constant” accepted and tolerated for many years, to a 25%. It is worth to highlight that the
citizen conscience have made it possible and real that the leaks at a domestic level are
attended and eliminated in a very short term.
Besides, the educational program and of sustained conscience through the years have
had positive secondary effects, because the children and youngsters –and with them all their
families- have increased the habits of consumption and care of water, but besides, when
growing they have transmitted and impressed a scope in their business activities, which has
generated best practices at the level of industrial and public consumers who –even if they don’t
represent the main consumption in MAM-, have together contributed for the sustainability in the
long term.
With all said before, the best practices for the care of water have allowed that the climate
change –questioned in those times and that today is a reality that mean more extreme
temperatures and cycles of drought and flood in practically the rest of the country– have not
generated conditions of emergency or required rationality in the water supply. The Integral
program of Water of Monterrey: Education, maintenance, recycle and management (differential
tariffs) is referred as a benchmark globally.
12 The Future of Water Availability and Demand in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey
It is important to mention that the promotion of Monterrey as “City of Knowledge”,
promoted since 2006 also implied that the industrial growth of MAM was modified toward one in
which the new companies that started their operations since then, have a water consumption
significantly lower.
The actions have been successful, there is conscience and commitment from all the
actors to continue and improve all these programs. Additionally, there has been work in the
“parallel chain” of grey waters (resulted from the vertical growth of MAM), that would allow a
better advantage of these waters for the public use. Furthermore, the systems to collect and
take advantage of the fluvial water in roofs, parking lots and public parks are next to being part
of the construction legislation.
All kids in Monterrey “live” in an articulated program and with a very practical sense of
conscience and care of water. This formation, by having a generational effect, generates a
virtuous cycle that feedback all the system.
Scenario 2: “Won’t miss the water till the well runs dry”
The people from Nuevo León that are used to consume an annual average of
approximately 300m3 of water has submitted his disagreement with “Agua y Drenaje de
Monterrey” for not having enough water supply to fill their tanks and tubs for their daily activities,
the department of complaints and clarifications have been working day and night to justify the
lack of supply for all the residents of the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey despite all this they
haven’t found a satisfactory solution for the citizens.
Compared with another years there has been an increase of illegal water connections
among the people living in the Metropolitan Area and a raise in the cyclical domestic revisions of
leakage suppressions, the consumers have stopped worrying about taking care of their pipes
and maintenance of their sanitary facilities.
The Government of Nuevo León is now in a crossroads because their efforts to invest in
infrastructure and the successful program of leakage suppression that started since 2009
oriented not only in replacing the pipes but to renew them, ignored the fact that the people with
ecological conscience of the use of this vital liquid could migrate to other states and their
population or major consumers whom are migrants from other states in search of work would
not be informed about the problem of water availability in the AMM, the programs and
campaigns towards an ecological conscious and responsible citizenship in water use is limited,
the Government have been presenting the same campaigns over the years and haven’t made
any change on the very low water rates for this service only for the benefit of the citizens, even
knowing that the domestic and industrial consumption has been increasing very fast for the past
years.
The program of leakage suppression has not improved the supply service or the
availability of water, it has only helped to keep in balance the system for a short period of time,
causing that the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey will sooner or later return to the same problem.
Monterrey despite of being a national and international role model as a pioneer in
several programs for the reuse of water, suppressions of leaks and ecological conscience, is
stopping now his economic development with the same problem that was presented 22 years
ago, the availability of water .
13 The Future of Water Availability and Demand in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey
Scenario 3: “It leaks water everywhere!”
The water availability in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey has gone worse as a result of
the water leakage increment from 36% to 40% and a decrement in the consciousness about
water care and use. At the beginning of the 21st century, it was thought that the water problem
was solved, the infrastructure in the zone was enough and like a consequence of the progress
that the citizenship had been made with respect to the culture of water, there were no need to
continue investing in the strengthen of making aware about the vital liquid care.
From the 2009 it was begun to neglect the care of the pipes and plumbing and water
takings, the waste of the water became imminent and the authorities didn’t take the suitable
measures on the matter. This happened because within the State arose projects extremely
relevant for the region economy, reason why investing resources for the impulse of these
projects became extremely relevant, restricting therefore the destination of support in so needed
maintenance the water network.
Another factor that made the situation worse was the lack of support that also appeared
about the personnel training and the introduction of technology to the governmental organization
“Agua y Drenaje de Monterrey” which is responsible for the water management. At the
beginning of the 21st century, this institution had the technology, processes and procedures
more advanced in Mexico, that is why Nuevo León and its metropolitan zone were national
examples; but the lack of update left behind the progress made and the result is reflected in the
amount of water that is lost by concept of water leaks (40%).
As well, thinking that the “Culture about Water” was extremely deeply-rooted in the
population, and that the campaigns made at the end of 20st century and the beginning of the
21st, had been the detonating of the increase of awareness about the use of the water, made
that measures taken, like advertising, were relaxed and only were concentrated efforts in
continuing as before it were had been doing. This assumption didn’t contemplate the fact that
there were people whom at the moment had water awareness but emigrated to other states,
and that also there are people of other states without culture about the water care and use that
migrated to the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey, or that the growth of the population required of
a greater diffusion of the campaigns, reason why instead of increase awareness on the culture
of the water, it decreasing, obtaining so the domestic consumption will increase from the 2008
to the 2030, around 54.11%.
As a result of the sum of these factors, the availability of water in the Metropolitan Area of
Monterrey was seriously affected, from having 1,404,800,000 m
3
in 2008, to the 2030; it was
reduced to 696,766,672.29 m
3
, which represents a diminution of 50.4%. Because the water
availability per capita is based on the water available, this one was reduced of 390.37 m
3
by
person in the 2008 to 125.24 m
3
in the 2030, representing the aggravation of the situation.
Scenario 4: “Spilt water does not return!”
The water availability in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey has been reduced
considerably because the increment of water leaks from 36% in 40%, even though the water
awareness has increased this hasn’t been enough.
In 2008, the leaders of Nuevo León made a research in which identified that the domestic
consumption required the greater amount of water, reason why they saw as an imminent
measure to continue working and even to redouble efforts to encourage a awareness about
water care and use, and thus to reduce the consumption per capita, in that moment for them, in
14 The Future of Water Availability and Demand in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey
sights to the future this variable looked like having more impact than any other; nevertheless,
they forgot systemic vision, in which there are several elements that interact, and didn’t pay
interest in solving situations that in the short term represented a strong risk, like the water leaks.
Based on the decision they took, the leads deployed a series of measures including
marketing and educational programs aligned and coordinated about the care of the water
environment to achieve progressively decreasing per capita consumption of water 300 to 150
liters per person per day, achieving a growth "index of conscience" of 8% growth. These
measures had excellent results, a greater number of people consume 150 liters per day, but this
was not enough to offset the loss of 40% water are presented annually for water leakage.
The successes achieved with the campaigns, didn’t allow decision-makers became aware
of this problem; well, the income of projects of great importance for the economic development
of the state captured the attention of the leaders that the problem of water leakage made worse,
making even when people consume less water, the vital liquid flows outside their hands.
Thanks to the increase in the growth of awareness, domestic consumption grew only by
33.32% (378549975.3 m
3
in 2008 to 504672308.4 m
3
in 2030), a percentage that is relatively
good because of the imminent impact of population growth, the available water was reduced by
38.43%, negative effect that was reduced by the measures taken, but in case of water leaks the
required adjustments had been made, this effect could have been reduced in greater proportion.
Because the per capita water availability is a function of available water, and this was
affected heavily by the lack of attention to leaks, it was reduced to 365.18 m
3
per person per
year in 2008 to 155.46 m
3
in 2030, which represent that while effective measures were taken,
the problem still persists.
Scenarios effect on Water Available Variable
In the following image, for each scenario there is a graph that presents with a blue line the
behavior of the water available variable that the original model forecasts. In red, is possible to
identify the new behavior of that variable under the effect of the key variables parameters.
13 The Future of Water Availability and Demand in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey
RECOMMENDATIONS
The model shows that a very obvious problem globally, nationally and in this case as state
and regional like water lack is not a simple solution and have not solved the problem simply
lowering the total consumption, for obvious it may seem. There are different variables
interacting in the system, each one of them with different impact and behavior.
The model shows that, while necessary, is not enough to direct investment to
infrastructure construction and investment in leakage control, and that only maintains the
balance of the system by a short period of time. Such is the case of scenario 2, which shows a
high investment in infrastructure to control water loss from leaks. However, only by taking
corrective measures for this variable, the system returns to collapse, raising the total
consumption and decreasing water availability. An aggravating factor in this approach is that
short-term, such measures are "shocking" and can generate a peace unfounded.
Similarly, if the investment in infrastructure and programs for leakage correction are
restricted, and every effort is directed to achieving a public awareness on the consumption and
use of this resource, implementing the theoretical and practical educational programs in schools
and campaigns public awareness to reduce consumption, the system succeeds in extending the
availability of water over a long period of time. However, the trend remains toward collapse,
pushed mainly by population growth and no remedial measures have not controlled for the loss
of water due to leakage in the pipes of the MAM.
The key recommendation for public managements and departments is that performing
their planning with a long and short term view, considering contingency plans, is necessary.
It is clear that we don’t have, nor will have all the necessary resources at a time. The
model succeeds in making evident the priority and with greater impact on the system issues. It
is necessary that the Federal Government support and invest resources in:
1) Permanent campaign of the equation and awareness of proper care and use of water for
the entire population of school age.
2) Programs for the use and reuse of water for the current adult population in order to not
only take control of waste water by removing the leak, but the citizenship work to elevate
the utilization and availability of water rising the rate of awareness, encouraging people
in Nuevo León to develop a culture of caring for the water that will spread in the
population the importance of making good use of this resource. Delivering the MAM
again serve as one of the pillars of economic and social development of the country.
3) A major boost to the improvement in the maintenance of the water distribution network
for progressive reduction of the leakage.
4) Maintenance and improvement of water management schemes, as regards the
management of differentiated and preferential rates to encourage the care and water
reuse.
A final clarification: the priority of the recommendations corresponds with the appearance
order. Educational processes do not yield immediate impact, but the real key to long-term
sustainability.
16 The Future of Water Availability and Demand in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey
CONCLUSIONS
As it was mentioned at the outset, the issue of water might seem known, predictable and
without great complexity. However, when it is tackled from a systemic and systematic approach
in the design of a model, the project took another dimension.
Thus, the "simple" act of gathering information on water with different angles of entry, to
spend on research and reflection that involved every step of the model from the dynamic
scenario, through the causal diagram and the block diagram, we offered and showed the value
of exercise in the sense that going into detail what seemed obvious and simple, was not so
much and we need to rethink and re-raise many times each one of the steps.
The systemic thinking and modeling are a lot more a style than a prescription and
therefore requires a lot of practice because the finished product is always subject to change.
This was clearly demonstrated throughout our process.
Another element -again, probably associated with the theme of water- is that it was
supposed that "the answer was already knew" and in many times the model discovered issues
that it hadn’t been planed or designed as for example, the weight of "Water Leaks" in the
behavior of the model -matter that was interesting-, also resulted fascinating how the same
variable may behave differently over time and not present continued trends.
Also was interesting the effect of the incremental process of modeling, in the sense that
both the learning content (water) and the process (modeling), they were integrated and
complemented in the different steps of the project and there are moments of thinking very
illustrative.
Moreover, work in a multidisciplinary team was challenging, rewarding and enjoyable.
With all of the above, we have a reasonable degree of consensus in the team that the
systems thinking and dynamic systems models should be part of many educational programs;
we have much interest in practice and study in depth the methodology for using it in later
opportunities.
The methodology of dynamics systems, provide useful elements for making informed
decisions. It’s simple and often move from one problem to the search for immediate solutions,
with different motives and arguments, usually in a hurry and with a high risk of inefficiency
involved.
It is clear that in real life and in these days everyone has a limited budget or time, so that a
process like this for a better decision making is more valuable and desirable. With this, it will be
more interesting and challenging to provide marketing to show the value of a methodology like
this.
17 The Future of Water Availability and Demand in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey
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