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Analyzing the Impacts of Climate Variability and Land Surface Changes on the Annual Water–Energy Balance in the Weihe River Basin of China

1
State Key Laboratory of Soil Erosion and Dryland Farming on the Loess Plateau, Institute of Soil and Water Conservation, Chinese Academy of Sciences and Ministry of Water Resources, Yangling, Xianyang 712100, China
2
University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
3
Shaanxi Key Laboratory of Earth Surface System and Environmental Carrying Capacity, College of Urban and Environmental Sciences, Northwest University, Xi’an 710127, China
4
Jiangxi Key Laboratory of Hydrology-Water Resources and Water Environment, Nanchang Institute of Technology, Nanchang 330099, China
5
School of Urban and Environmental, Liaoning University, Dalian 116029, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Water 2018, 10(12), 1792; https://doi.org/10.3390/w10121792
Received: 27 October 2018 / Revised: 1 December 2018 / Accepted: 3 December 2018 / Published: 6 December 2018
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Abstract

The serious soil erosion problems and decreased runoff of the Loess Plateau may aggravate the shortage of its local water resources. Understanding the spatiotemporal influences on runoff changes is important for water resource management. Here, we study this in the largest tributary of the Yellow River, the Weihe River Basin. Data from four hydrological stations (Lin Jia Cun (LJC), Xian Yang (XY), Lin Tong (LT), and Hua Xian (HX)) and 10 meteorological stations from 1961–2014 were used to analyze changes in annual runoff. The Mann–Kendall test and Pettitt abrupt change point test diagnosed variations in runoff in the Weihe River basin; the time periods before and after abrupt change points are the base period (period I) and change period (period II), respectively. Within the Budyko framework, the catchment properties (ω in Fu’s equation) represent land surface changes; climate variability comprises precipitation (P) and potential evapotranspiration (ET0). All the stations showed a reduction in annual runoff during the recording period, of which 22.66% to 50.42% was accounted for by land surface change and 1.97% to 53.32% by climate variability. In the Weihe River basin, land surface changes drive runoff variation in LT and climate variability drives it in LJC, XY, and HX. The contribution of land surface changes to runoff reduction in period I was less than that in period II, indicating that changes in human activity further decreased runoff. Therefore, this study offers a scientific basis for understanding runoff trends and driving forces, providing an important reference for social development, ecological construction, and water resource management. View Full-Text
Keywords: climate variability; land surface change; runoff; Budyko framework; elasticity coefficient; Weihe River Basin climate variability; land surface change; runoff; Budyko framework; elasticity coefficient; Weihe River Basin
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Deng, W.; Song, J.; Bai, H.; He, Y.; Yu, M.; Wang, H.; Cheng, D. Analyzing the Impacts of Climate Variability and Land Surface Changes on the Annual Water–Energy Balance in the Weihe River Basin of China. Water 2018, 10, 1792.

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