Dry-wet variations and cause analysis in Northeast China at multi-time scales
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Global warming has caused unevenly distributed changes in precipitation and evapotranspiration, which has and will certainly impact on the wet-dry variations. Based on daily meteorological data collected at 91 weather stations in Northeast China (NEC), the spatiotemporal characteristics of dry and wet climatic variables (precipitation, crop reference evapotranspiration (ET0), and humid index (HI)) are analyzed, and the probable reasons causing the changes in these variables are discussed during the period of 1961–2014. Precipitation showed non-significant trend over the period of 1961–2014, while ET0 showed a significant decreasing trend, which led to climate wetting in NEC. The period of 2001–2012 exhibited smaller semiarid area and larger humid area compared to the period of 1961–1980, indicating NEC has experienced wetting process at decadal scale. ET0 was most sensitive to relative humidity, and wind speed was the second most sensitive variable. Sunshine hours and temperature were found to be less influential to ET0 in the study area. The changes in wind speed in the recent 54 years have caused the greatest influence on ET0, followed by temperature. For each month, wind speed was the most significant variable causing ET0 reduction in all months except July. Temperature, as a dominant factor, made a positive contribution to ET0 in February and March, as well as sunshine hours in June and July, and relative humidity in August and September. In summary, NEC has experienced noticeable climate wetting due to the significantly decreasing ET0, and the decrease in wind speed was the biggest contributor for the ET0 reduction. Although agricultural drought crisis is expected to be partly alleviated, regional water resources management and planning in Northeast China should consider the potential water shortage and water conflict in the future because of spatiotemporal dry-wet variations in NEC.
This research was funded by National Key Research and Development Project (Grant No. 2016YFD0300106, 2016YFD0300105), National Science and Technology Pillar Program during the 12th Five-year Plan Period (No. 2012BAD09B02, 2012BAD20B04), and National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 41,271,053). The funding agencies had no involvement in the study design, analysis interpretation, writing, or publication.
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