Improving probabilistic hydroclimatic projections through high-resolution convection-permitting climate modeling and Markov chain Monte Carlo simulations
Understanding future changes in hydroclimatic variables plays a crucial role in improving resilience and adaptation to extreme weather events such as floods and droughts. In this study, we develop high-resolution climate projections over Texas by using the convection-permitting Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model with 4 km horizontal grid spacing, and then produce the Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC)-based hydrologic forecasts in the Guadalupe River basin which is the primary concern of the Texas Water Development Board and the Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority. The Parameter-elevation Regressions on Independent Slopes Model (PRISM) dataset is used to verify the WRF climate simulations. The Model Parameter Estimation Experiment (MOPEX) dataset is used to validate probabilistic hydrologic predictions. Projected changes in precipitation, potential evapotranspiration (PET) and streamflow at different temporal scales are examined by dynamically downscaling climate projections derived from 15 Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5) general circulation models (GCMs). Our findings reveal that the Upper Coast Climate Division of Texas is projected to experience the most remarkable wetting caused by precipitation and PET changes, whereas the most significant drying is expected to occur for the North Central Texas Climate Division. The dry Guadalupe River basin is projected to become drier with a substantial increase in future drought risks, especially for the summer season. And the extreme precipitation events are projected to increase in frequency and intensity with a reduction in overall precipitation frequency, which may result in more frequent occurrences of flash floods and drought episodes in the Guadalupe River basin.
KeywordsConvection permitting High-resolution climate projection Hydroclimatic changes Markov chain Monte Carlo Pseudo global warming
This research was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 51809223) and the Hong Kong Polytechnic University Start-up Grant (Grant No. 1-ZE8S). The author Y. Wang was funded by the Texas Tech Research Assistant Professorship Initiative. The authors would like to express their sincere gratitude to the editor and three anonymous reviewers for their constructive comments and suggestions.
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