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Spatiotemporal Water Yield Variations and Influencing Factors in the Lhasa River Basin, Tibetan Plateau

State Key Laboratory of Urban and Regional Ecology, Research Center for Eco-Environmental Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100085, China
College of Resources and Environment, University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
Sustainability Research Institute, School of Earth and Environment, University of Leeds, Leeds LS2 9JT, UK
Key Laboratory of Urban Environment and Health, Institute of Urban Environment, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Xiamen 361021, China
State Key Laboratory of Simulation and Regulation of Water Cycle in River Basin, China Institute of Water Resources and Hydropower Research, Beijing 100038, China
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Water 2020, 12(5), 1498;
Received: 21 April 2020 / Revised: 10 May 2020 / Accepted: 21 May 2020 / Published: 23 May 2020
(This article belongs to the Section Hydrology and Hydrogeology)
Understanding the spatiotemporal characteristics of water yield and its influencing factors is important for water resources management. In this study, we used the seasonal water yield model (SWYM) to assess the spatiotemporal water yield changes of the Lhasa River Basin from 1990 to 2015, and analyzed its influencing factors by focusing on precipitation, land cover, and normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) change. We first examined the model through Morris screening sensitivity analysis and validated it with the observed flow data. Spatiotemporal variation of three indices of water yield, baseflow, quick flow, and local recharge were then assessed. Results showed that from 1990 to 2015, the baseflow, local recharge, and quick flow decreased by 67.03%, 80.21%, and 37.03%, respectively. The spatial pattern of water yield remained mostly unchanged. According to the contribution analysis, precipitation and NDVI change were the main factors affecting water yield in the Lhasa River Basin, while land cover change began to exert greater influence after 2010. A combination of climate change and human activities therefore drive water yield change, especially through vegetation change. Water resources management strategies should thus take into account the combination of rapidly changing climate and human activities. View Full-Text
Keywords: water yield; baseflow; land cover; climate change; Tibetan Plateau water yield; baseflow; land cover; climate change; Tibetan Plateau
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Lu, H.; Yan, Y.; Zhu, J.; Jin, T.; Liu, G.; Wu, G.; Stringer, L.C.; Dallimer, M. Spatiotemporal Water Yield Variations and Influencing Factors in the Lhasa River Basin, Tibetan Plateau. Water 2020, 12, 1498.

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