Impact of possible climate changes on river runoff under different natural conditions

Gusev, Yeugeniy M.; Nasonova, Olga N.; Kovalev, Evgeny E.; Ayzel, Georgy V.

The present study was carried out within the framework of the International Inter-Sectoral Impact Model Intercomparison Project (ISI-MIP) for 11 large river basins located in different continents of the globe under a wide variety of natural conditions. The aim of the study was to investigate possible changes in various characteristics of annual river runoff (mean values, standard deviations, frequency of extreme annual runoff) up to 2100 on the basis of application of the land surface model SWAP and meteorological projections simulated by five General Circulation Models (GCMs) according to four RCP scenarios. Analysis of the obtained results has shown that changes in climatic runoff are different (both in magnitude and sign) for the river basins located in different regions of the planet due to differences in natural (primarily climatic) conditions. The climatic elasticities of river runoff to changes in air temperature and precipitation were estimated that makes it possible, as the first approximation, to project changes in climatic values of annual runoff, using the projected changes in mean annual air temperature and annual precipitation for the river basins. It was found that for most rivers under study, the frequency of occurrence of extreme runoff values increases. This is true both for extremely high runoff (when the projected climatic runoff increases) and for extremely low values (when the projected climatic runoff decreases).

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Gusev, Yeugeniy M. / Nasonova, Olga N. / Kovalev, Evgeny E. / et al: Impact of possible climate changes on river runoff under different natural conditions. 2018. Copernicus Publications.

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