Impacts of 1.5 and 2 °C global warming on water availability and extreme hydrological events in Yiluo and Beijiang River catchments in China

In the discussion of climate impacts, 1.5 and 2 °C have become iconic values. This study examines the impacts of 1.5 and 2 °C global warming on water availability, runoff seasonality, and extreme monthly and daily runoff in two catchments, using the semidistributed hydrological model Hydrologiska Byråns Vattenbalansavdelning-D, based on a combination of five global climate models (GCMs) and four representative concentration pathways (RCPs). Subsequently, quantitative assessments were made for projection uncertainties from GCMs and RCPs. The two catchments are the Yiluo River catchment (YLC) in northern China and the Beijiang River catchment (BJC) in southern China. The results indicate wetter flood seasons for YLC and warmer mean annual temperatures, drier springs, and more severe floods over long return periods (25 and 50 years) for both catchments.

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