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Article

Quantifying the Impacts of Climate Change on Streamflow Dynamics of Two Major Rivers of the Northern Lake Erie Basin in Canada

School of Engineering, University of Guelph, 50 Stone Rd E, Guelph, ON N1G 2W1, Canada
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Sustainability 2018, 10(8), 2897; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10082897
Received: 1 May 2018 / Revised: 3 August 2018 / Accepted: 10 August 2018 / Published: 15 August 2018
This paper focuses on understanding the effects of projected climate change on streamflow dynamics of the Grand and Thames rivers of the Northern Lake Erie (NLE) basin. A soil water assessment tool (SWAT) model is developed, calibrated, and validated in a base-period. The model is able to simulate the monthly streamflow dynamics with ‘Good’ to ‘Very Good’ accuracy. The calibrated and validated model is then subjected with daily bias-corrected future climatic data from the Canadian Regional Climate Model (CanRCM4). Five bias-correction methods and their 12 combinations were evaluated using the Climate Model data for hydrologic modeling (CMhyd). Distribution mapping (DM) performed the best and was used for further analysis. Two future time-periods and two IPCC AR5 representative concentration pathways (RCPs) are considered. Results showed marked temporal and spatial variability in precipitation (−37% to +63%) and temperature (−3 °C to +14 °C) changes, which are reflected in evapotranspiration (−52% to +412%) and soil water storage (−60% to +12%) changes, resulting in heterogeneity in streamflow (−77% to +170%) changes. On average, increases in winter (+11%), and decreases in spring (–33%), summer (−23%), and autumn (−15%) streamflow are expected in future. This is the first work of this kind in the NLE and such marked variability in water resources availability poses considerable challenges to water resources planners and managers. View Full-Text
Keywords: climate change; bias-correction; Northern Lake Erie basin; streamflow; SWAT climate change; bias-correction; Northern Lake Erie basin; streamflow; SWAT
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MDPI and ACS Style

Zhang, B.; Shrestha, N.K.; Daggupati, P.; Rudra, R.; Shukla, R.; Kaur, B.; Hou, J. Quantifying the Impacts of Climate Change on Streamflow Dynamics of Two Major Rivers of the Northern Lake Erie Basin in Canada. Sustainability 2018, 10, 2897. https://doi.org/10.3390/su10082897

AMA Style

Zhang B, Shrestha NK, Daggupati P, Rudra R, Shukla R, Kaur B, Hou J. Quantifying the Impacts of Climate Change on Streamflow Dynamics of Two Major Rivers of the Northern Lake Erie Basin in Canada. Sustainability. 2018; 10(8):2897. https://doi.org/10.3390/su10082897

Chicago/Turabian Style

Zhang, Binbin, Narayan K. Shrestha, Prasad Daggupati, Ramesh Rudra, Rituraj Shukla, Baljeet Kaur, and Jun Hou. 2018. "Quantifying the Impacts of Climate Change on Streamflow Dynamics of Two Major Rivers of the Northern Lake Erie Basin in Canada" Sustainability 10, no. 8: 2897. https://doi.org/10.3390/su10082897

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