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Assessment of Rainfall Variability and Its Relationship to ENSO in a Sub-Andean Watershed in Central Bolivia

1
Teknisk Geologi, Lund University, 22100 Lund, Sweden
2
Laboratório de Hidráulica, Universidad Mayor de San Simón, 1832 Cochabamba, Bolivia
3
Hydraulics Section, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, 3001 Leuven, Belgium
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Water 2018, 10(6), 701; https://doi.org/10.3390/w10060701
Received: 10 April 2018 / Revised: 24 May 2018 / Accepted: 24 May 2018 / Published: 29 May 2018
(This article belongs to the Section Hydrology)
Climate change and variability are likely to increase in most parts of the world, leading to more extreme events, which may increase the stress on already threatened water resources. This study focuses on the effects of the El Niño Southern Oscillation in the rainfall of Pucara basin and in the groundwater levels of the Punata alluvial fan in the Bolivian sub-Andes. Climate change and variability were assessed using the Quantile Perturbation Method, by detecting anomalous temporal changes in extreme quantiles of annual precipitation in the Pucara watershed and the correlation with groundwater levels in the Punata fan. The results show oscillatory behavior over periods of 28 to 33 years for the occurrence of wet and dry extremes at all studied meteorological stations. This suggests a similar oscillatory behavior of the groundwater levels; however, longer groundwater level observations are needed in order to confirm the link between precipitation variability and groundwater fluctuations. Local actors such as water managers, farmers and decision makers must take into consideration this climate variability in order to plan for these multi-decadal variations in response to the changes. View Full-Text
Keywords: climate variability; El Niño; Southern Oscillation Index; groundwater; Bolivia climate variability; El Niño; Southern Oscillation Index; groundwater; Bolivia
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Gonzales Amaya, A.; Villazon, M.F.; Willems, P. Assessment of Rainfall Variability and Its Relationship to ENSO in a Sub-Andean Watershed in Central Bolivia. Water 2018, 10, 701.

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