Next Article in Journal
Press-Pulse Odocoileus Virginianus Herbivory in Relict Tsuga Canadensis Stands in the Western Upper Peninsula of Michigan, USA
Previous Article in Journal
Unraveling the Relationship between Collective Action and Social Learning: Evidence from Community Forest Management in Canada
Open AccessArticle

Contribution Analysis of the Spatial-Temporal Changes in Streamflow in a Typical Elevation Transitional Watershed of Southwest China over the Past Six Decades

1
Jinyun Forest Ecosystem Research Station, School of Soil and Water Conservation, Beijing Forestry University, Beijing 100083, China
2
College of Marine Science and Technology, China University of Geosciences (Wuhan), Wuhan 430074, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Forests 2019, 10(6), 495; https://doi.org/10.3390/f10060495
Received: 12 April 2019 / Revised: 27 May 2019 / Accepted: 8 June 2019 / Published: 10 June 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Forest Inventory, Quantitative Methods and Remote Sensing)
Attribution analyses on streamflow variation to changing climate and land surface characteristics are critical in studies of watershed hydrology. However, attribution results may differ greatly on different spatial and temporal scales, which has not been extensively studied previously. This study aims to investigate the spatial-temporal contributions of climate change and underlying surface variation to streamflow alteration using Budyko framework. Jiangling River Watershed (JRW), a typical landform transitional watershed in Southwest China, was chosen as the study area. The watershed was firstly divided into eight sub-basins by hydrologic stations, and hydrometeorological series (1954–2015) were divided into sub-intervals to discriminate spatial-temporal features. The results showed that long-term tendencies of hydrometeorological variables, i.e., precipitation (P), potential evapotranspiration (E0), and runoff depth (R), exhibited clear spatial patterns, which were highly related to topographic characteristics. Additionally, sensitivity analysis, which interpreted the effect of one driving factor by unit change, showed that climate factors P and E0, and catchment characteristics (land surface parameter n) played positive, negative, and negative roles in R, according to elastic coefficients (ε), respectively. The spatial distribution of ε illustrated a greater sensitivity and heterogeneity in the plateau and semi-humid regions (upstream). Moreover, the results from attribution analysis showed that the contribution of the land surface factor accounted for approximately 80% of the R change for the entire JRW, with an obvious spatial variation. Furthermore, tendencies of the contribution rates demonstrated regulations across different sub-regions: a decreasing trend of land surface impacts in trunk stream regions and increasing tendencies in tributary regions, and vice versa for climate impacts. Overall, both hydrometeorological variables and contributions of influencing factors presented regularities in long-term tendencies across different sub-regions. More particularly, the impact of the primary influencing factor on all sub-basins exhibited a decreasing trend over time. The evidence that climate and land surface change act on streamflow in a synergistic way, would complicate the attribution analysis and bring a new challenge to attribution analysis. View Full-Text
Keywords: contribution analyses; Budyko framework; land surface; climate change; Jialing River Watershed contribution analyses; Budyko framework; land surface; climate change; Jialing River Watershed
Show Figures

Figure 1

MDPI and ACS Style

Meng, C.; Zhang, H.; Wang, Y.; Wang, Y.; Li, J.; Li, M. Contribution Analysis of the Spatial-Temporal Changes in Streamflow in a Typical Elevation Transitional Watershed of Southwest China over the Past Six Decades. Forests 2019, 10, 495.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map by Country/Region

1
Back to TopTop