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Open AccessArticle

Impacts of Climate Change and Human Activities on Runoff Variation of the Intensive Phosphate Mined Huangbaihe River Basin, China

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College of Hydraulic & Environmental Engineering, China Three Gorges University, Yichang 443002, China
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Hubei Provincial Collaborative Innovation Center for Water Security, Wuhan 430070, China
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Comprehensive Law Enforcement Bureau for Protection of Water Resources in the Huangbaihehe River Basin, Yichang, Hubei 443005, China
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Institute of Groundwater and Earth Sciences, Jinan University, Guangzhou 510632, China
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Department of Water resources, Faculty of Geo-Information Science and Earth Observation (ITC), University of Twente, Hengelosestraat 99, P.O. Box 217, 7500 AE Enschede, The Netherlands
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Water 2019, 11(10), 2039; https://doi.org/10.3390/w11102039
Received: 25 August 2019 / Revised: 25 September 2019 / Accepted: 26 September 2019 / Published: 29 September 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Hydrology)
Natural hydrological processes have been changed under the combined influences of climate change and intensive human activities in the Huangbaihe River Basin, where large-scale phosphate mining has been taking place. Therefore, evaluating the impact of climate change and intensive human activities on runoff variation and detecting the main driving factor leading to the variation are important for more efficient water resource management and more sustainable development of the regional economy. Despite numerous studies having been performed on this topic, little research focused on the impact of mining on runoff variation. The non-parametric Mann-Kendall (MK) trend test and accumulative anomaly methods were applied to identifying basic trends and change points of the hydro-meteorological elements over the period from 1978 to 2016. Then, the Soil Water and Assessment Tool (SWAT) and the Slope Changing Ratio of Accumulative Quantity (SCRAQ) were both used to quantify the contributions of climate change and anthropogenic activities on runoff variation. In this step, the runoff data were restored to their natural state before the construction of Xuanmiaoguan (XMG) dam. Due to the lack of locally observed evapotranspiration data, Global Land Evaporation Amsterdam Model and an empirical equation applied to obtain the evapotranspiration data. The results revealed that the change points are in 1985 and 2006. Therefore, the total period was divided into three periods, that is, the baseline period Ta (1978–1984), change period Tb (1985–2005) and change period Tc (2006–2016). Compared with the baseline period Ta, climate change dominates the runoff variation in the period Tb and is responsible for 60.5 and 74.4% of runoff variation, while human activities contribute the most to runoff variation for the period Tc (79.3 and 86.1%). Furthermore, an analysis of the underlying mechanism of underground phosphate mining indicates that mining can affect overland flow and baseflow simultaneously. This study can provide some information in determining the contributions of climate change and human activities in intensive phosphate mined basins and areas lack of evapotranspiration data. View Full-Text
Keywords: MK test; change points; SWAT; SCRAQ; the Huangbaihe River Basin MK test; change points; SWAT; SCRAQ; the Huangbaihe River Basin
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Bo, H.; Dong, X.; Li, Z.; Hu, X.; Reta, G.; Wei, C.; Su, B. Impacts of Climate Change and Human Activities on Runoff Variation of the Intensive Phosphate Mined Huangbaihe River Basin, China. Water 2019, 11, 2039.

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