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Open AccessArticle

Drought Propagation in Semi-Arid River Basins in Latin America: Lessons from Mexico to the Southern Cone

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Centro Interdisciplinario de Cambio Global, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Santiago 7820436, Chile
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Departamento de Ecosistemas y Medio Ambiente, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Santiago 7820436, Chile
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Departamento de Ingeniería Hidráulica y Ambiental, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Santiago 7820436, Chile
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Centro de Desarrollo Urbano Sustentable CEDEUS CONICYT/FONDAP/15110020, Santiago 7820436, Chile
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Centro de Investigación para la Gestión Integrada de Desastres Naturales CIGIDEN CONICYT/FONDAP/15110017, Santiago 7820436, Chile
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Udall Center for Studies in Public Policy (University of Arizona), Tucson, AZ 85719, USA
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School of Geography and Development, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ 85719, USA
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Grupo de Historia Ambiental, Instituto Argentino de Nivología, Glaciología y Ciencias Ambientales (IANIGLA-CONICET), Mendoza CP 5500, Argentina
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Instituto de Geografía, Facultad de Filosofía y Letras, Universidad Nacional de Cuyo, Mendoza CP 5500, Argentina
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El Colegio de Sonora, Hermosillo 83150, Sonora, Mexico
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Water 2018, 10(11), 1564; https://doi.org/10.3390/w10111564
Received: 30 August 2018 / Revised: 12 October 2018 / Accepted: 30 October 2018 / Published: 2 November 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Monitoring and Predicting Soil Moisture and Drought Conditions)
Detecting droughts as early as possible is important in avoiding negative impacts on economy, society, and environment. To improve drought monitoring, we studied drought propagation (i.e., the temporal manifestation of a precipitation deficit on soil moisture and streamflow). We used the Standardized Precipitation Evapotranspiration Index (SPEI), Standardized Streamflow Index (SSI), and Standardized Soil Moisture Index (SSMI) in three drought-prone regions: Sonora (Mexico), Maipo (Chile), and Mendoza-Tunuyán (Argentina) to study their temporal interdependence. For this evaluation we use precipitation, temperature, and streamflow data from gauges that are managed by governmental institutions, and satellite-based soil moisture from the ESA CCI SM v03.3 combined data set. Results confirm that effective drought monitoring should be carried out (1) at river-basin scale, (2) including several variables, and (3) considering hydro-meteorological processes from outside its boundaries. View Full-Text
Keywords: drought assessment; drought propagation; standardized drought indices; semi-arid river basins; Latin-America drought assessment; drought propagation; standardized drought indices; semi-arid river basins; Latin-America
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Oertel, M.; Meza, F.J.; Gironás, J.; A. Scott, C.; Rojas, F.; Pineda-Pablos, N. Drought Propagation in Semi-Arid River Basins in Latin America: Lessons from Mexico to the Southern Cone. Water 2018, 10, 1564.

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