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Remote Sens. 2017, 9(3), 218; doi:10.3390/rs9030218

Role of Climate Variability and Human Activity on Poopó Lake Droughts between 1990 and 2015 Assessed Using Remote Sensing Data

Instituto de Geociência (IG), Universidade de Brasília, 70910-900 Brasilia-DF, Brazil
Mixed Laboratory International, Observatory for Environmental Change (LMI-OCE), IRD/UnB, Campus Darcy Ribeiro, 70910-900 Brasília, Brazil
Laboratorio de Teledetección (LABTEL), Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos, 15081 Lima, Peru
Instituto de Hidráulica e Hidrología (IHH), Universidad Mayor de San Andrés, La Paz, Bolivia
Environnement Toulouse (GET) (IRD, CNRS), Université Paul Sabatier, 31062 Toulouse, France
Laboratoire d’Etudes en Géophysique et Océanographie Spatiales (LEGOS) (UMR 5564, IRD, CNES, CNRS), Université Paul Sabatier, 31062 Toulouse, France
Espace Développement (ESPACE-DEV) (UMR 228, IRD), 34000 Montpellier, France
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Alfredo R. Huete and Prasad S. Thenkabail
Received: 5 December 2016 / Accepted: 25 February 2017 / Published: 28 February 2017
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In 2015, an emergency state was declared in Bolivia when Poopó Lake dried up. Climate variability and the increasing need for water are potential factors responsible for this situation. Because field data are missing over the region, no statements are possible about the influence of mentioned factors. This study is a preliminary step toward the understanding of Poopó Lake drought using remote sensing data. First, atmospheric corrections for Landsat (FLAASH and L8SR), seven satellite derived indexes for extracting water bodies, MOD16 evapotranspiration, PERSIANN-CDR and MSWEP rainfall products potentiality were assessed. Then, the fluctuations of Poopó Lake extent over the last 26 years are presented for the first time jointly, with the mean regional annual rainfall. Three main droughts are highlighted between 1990 and 2015: two are associated with negative annual rainfall anomalies in 1994 and 1995 and one associated with positive annual rainfall anomaly in 2015. This suggests that other factors than rainfall influenced the recent disappearance of the lake. The regional evapotranspiration increased by 12.8% between 2000 and 2014. Evapotranspiration increase is not homogeneous over the watershed but limited over the main agriculture regions. Agriculture activity is one of the major factors contributing to the regional desertification and recent disappearance of Poopó Lake. View Full-Text
Keywords: Poopó Lake; drought; Landsat; Atmospheric correction; MOD16; PERSIANN-CDR; MSWEP Poopó Lake; drought; Landsat; Atmospheric correction; MOD16; PERSIANN-CDR; MSWEP

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Satgé, F.; Espinoza, R.; Zolá, R.P.; Roig, H.; Timouk, F.; Molina, J.; Garnier, J.; Calmant, S.; Seyler, F.; Bonnet, M.-P. Role of Climate Variability and Human Activity on Poopó Lake Droughts between 1990 and 2015 Assessed Using Remote Sensing Data. Remote Sens. 2017, 9, 218.

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