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Water 2018, 10(9), 1260; https://doi.org/10.3390/w10091260

Future Predictions of Rainfall and Temperature Using GCM and ANN for Arid Regions: A Case Study for the Qassim Region, Saudi Arabia

1
Department of Civil Engineering, College of Engineering, Qassim University, Buraydah 51431, Al Qassim, Saudi Arabia
2
Department of Irrigation and Hydraulics, College of Engineering, Alexandria University, Alexandria 21544, Egypt
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 26 July 2018 / Revised: 6 September 2018 / Accepted: 13 September 2018 / Published: 15 September 2018
(This article belongs to the Section Water Resources Management and Governance)
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Abstract

Future predictions of rainfall patterns in water-scarce regions are highly important for effective water resource management. Global circulation models (GCMs) are commonly used to make such predictions, but these models are highly complex and expensive. Furthermore, their results are associated with uncertainties and variations for different GCMs for various greenhouse gas emission scenarios. Data-driven models including artificial neural networks (ANNs) and adaptive neuro fuzzy inference systems (ANFISs) can be used to predict long-term future changes in rainfall and temperature, which is a challenging task and has limitations including the impact of greenhouse gas emission scenarios. Therefore, in this research, results from various GCMs and data-driven models were investigated to study the changes in temperature and rainfall of the Qassim region in Saudi Arabia. Thirty years of monthly climatic data were used for trend analysis using Mann–Kendall test and simulating the changes in temperature and rainfall using three GCMs (namely, HADCM3, INCM3, and MPEH5) for the A1B, A2, and B1 emissions scenarios as well as two data-driven models (ANN: feed-forward-multilayer, perceptron and ANFIS) without the impact of any emissions scenario. The results of the GCM were downscaled for the Qassim region using the Long Ashton Research Station’s Weather Generator 5.5. The coefficient of determination (R2) and Akaike’s information criterion (AIC) were used to compare the performance of the models. Results showed that the ANNs could outperform the ANFIS for predicting long-term future temperature and rainfall with acceptable accuracy. All nine GCM predictions (three models with three emissions scenarios) differed significantly from one another. Overall, the future predictions showed that the temperatures of the Qassim region will increase with a specified pattern from 2011 to 2099, whereas the changes in rainfall will differ over various spans of the future. View Full-Text
Keywords: climate change; GCM; HADCM3; INCM3; MPEH5; ANN; Qassim region climate change; GCM; HADCM3; INCM3; MPEH5; ANN; Qassim region
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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Alotaibi, K.; Ghumman, A.R.; Haider, H.; Ghazaw, Y.M.; Shafiquzzaman, M. Future Predictions of Rainfall and Temperature Using GCM and ANN for Arid Regions: A Case Study for the Qassim Region, Saudi Arabia. Water 2018, 10, 1260.

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