Rainfall is an essential index to measure drought, and it is dependent upon various parameters including geographical environment, air temperature and pressure. The nonlinear nature of climatic variables leads to problems such as poor accuracy and instability in traditional forecasting methods. In this paper, the combined forecasting method based on data mining technology and cross entropy is proposed to forecast the rainfall with full consideration of the time-effectiveness of historical data. In view of the flaws of the fuzzy clustering method which is easy to fall into local optimal solution and low speed of operation, the ant colony algorithm is adopted to overcome these shortcomings and, as a result, refine the model. The method for determining weights is also improved by using the cross entropy. Besides, the forecast is conducted by analyzing the weighted average rainfall based on Thiessen polygon in the Beijing–Tianjin–Hebei region. Since the predictive errors are calculated, the results show that improved ant colony fuzzy clustering can effectively select historical data and enhance the accuracy of prediction so that the damage caused by extreme weather events like droughts and floods can be greatly lessened and even kept at bay.
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