Next Article in Journal
Effect of Surface Temperature on Energy Consumption in a Calibrated Building: A Case Study of Delhi
Next Article in Special Issue
Bias Correction of RCM Precipitation by TIN-Copula Method: A Case Study for Historical and Future Simulations in Cyprus
Previous Article in Journal
On the Efficiency of Using Transpiration Cooling to Mitigate Urban Heat
Previous Article in Special Issue
Prediction of Autumn Precipitation over the Middle and Lower Reaches of the Yangtze River Basin Based on Climate Indices
Open AccessArticle

Analysis of the Spatio-Temporal Variability of Precipitation and Drought Intensity in an Arid Catchment in South Africa

1
Department of Soil, Crop and Climate Sciences, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein 9300, South Africa
2
Department of Civil Engineering, Central University of Technology, Bloemfontein 9300, South Africa
3
Van’s Lab: Soil, Plant and Water Analysis, Bloemfontein 9338, South Africa
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Climate 2020, 8(6), 70; https://doi.org/10.3390/cli8060070
Received: 26 April 2020 / Revised: 20 May 2020 / Accepted: 23 May 2020 / Published: 1 June 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Precipitation: Forecasting and Climate Projections)
Water deficit is high and precipitation varies spatio-temporally in arid areas. This study was conducted to analyse the spatio-temporal variability of precipitation and drought intensity in an arid catchment in South Africa. The Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) was used to estimate the spatio-temporal precipitation where nine meteorological stations were used as input to the model. The model was calibrated and validated by regionalization with a physical similarity approach. SWAT only predicts precipitation at sub-basin level. Hence, the mean precipitation was further interpolated by using the inverse distance weighted method (IDW). The Mann–Kendall trend test shows that there was no trend in annual precipitation whereas in the monthly precipitation there was a 0.01 mm decrease. Daily precipitation varied from 0.1 to 4 mm whereas in a monthly basis, it varied from 6 mm (September) to 43.4 mm (February). The annual precipitation varied from 169 mm (1983) to 415 mm (2003) with a long-term mean of 280.8 mm. Precipitation is also highly variable in space throughout the catchment. Generally, annual precipitation decreased from north to south; however, during the winter season, the reverse was true due to the influence of rain-bearing condition from the south- western direction. Based on the aridity index (AI), the catchment is categorized as arid. The SPI shows that the 1983 drought was the worst whereas the 2003 and 2004 years were relatively wet. The results from this study provide baseline information for further research in climate change adaptation and environmental monitoring programs in the region. View Full-Text
Keywords: arid catchments; drought intensity; precipitation deficit; South Africa; spatio-temporal variation; trend analysis arid catchments; drought intensity; precipitation deficit; South Africa; spatio-temporal variation; trend analysis
Show Figures

Figure 1

MDPI and ACS Style

Mengistu, A.G.; Tesfuhuney, W.A.; Woyessa, Y.E.; van Rensburg, L.D. Analysis of the Spatio-Temporal Variability of Precipitation and Drought Intensity in an Arid Catchment in South Africa. Climate 2020, 8, 70.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map by Country/Region

1
Search more from Scilit
 
Search
Back to TopTop