Water Demand Forecasting | Tampa Bay Water

Tampa Bay Water provides regional water demand forecasts for its six member governments to project the amount of water supply needed within Tampa Bay Water’s service area. Tampa Bay Water forecasts regional demand on multi-time scales.

Short-term Forecasts

Weekly demand forecasts are made every Friday as part of the Optimized Regional Operations Plan (OROP) to guide weekly source allocations. These models are primarily driven by recent water use by member governments at each point of connection where the agency delivers wholesale water, and weather (precipitation and temperature). These models are part of Tampa Bay Water's weekly decision support tools.

Seasonal Demand Forecasts

These models are primarily based on recent member-government delivery and seasonal weather outlook. They are used to guide seasonal source allocation (monthly) decisions that balance different supply sources to stay within the budgeted source allocations quantities. Variations in climate such as El Niño and La Niña are captured by these models.

Long-term Demand Forecast/Projections

There are two primary uses of these models: annual budgeting that provides one- and five-year outlooks of regional demand and the supply mix to meet those demands; and for long-term supply planning and reliability analysis. These demand projections are for planning over 20-30 year horizons.

Tampa Bay Water has sought and developed a better understanding of variation in water demand and its implications on supply development options (size and timing). The agency commissioned the development of a long‐term demand forecasting system (LTDFS) in 2001 to quantify how socioeconomic, weather characteristics and policy decisions influence potable water demand in its service area. These models were redeveloped in 2009 and 2019. Each year these demand projections are updated to capture regional growth, economic and demographic outlook of the region.

A principal product of this initiative is our regional demand model that calculates demand inclusive of the influence of weather, socioeconomic and policy conditions. The model was developed on a geographic basis, such that water demand was forecasted for distinct locations in the Tampa Bay Water service area and three sectors (single family, multi family, and non-residential). These model‐based demand forecasts help decision‐makers assess water supply needs over a planning horizon extending through the year 2045.