Acta Geophysica

, Volume 64, Issue 5, pp 1731–1754 | Cite as

Extreme Historical Droughts in the South-Eastern Alps — Analyses Based on Standardised Precipitation Index

  • Mihael Brenčič
Open Access


Droughts are natural phenomena affecting the environment and human activities. There are various drought definitions and quantitative indices; among them is the Standardised Precipitation Index (SPI). In the drought investigations, historical events are poorly characterised and little data are available. To decipher past drought appearances in the southeastern Alps with a focus on Slovenia, precipitation data from HISTALP data repository were taken to identify extreme drought events (SPI ≤ -2.00) from the second half of the 19th century to the present day. Several long-term extreme drought crises were identified in the region (between the years 1888 and 1896; after World War I, during and after World War II). After 1968, drought patterns detected with SPI changed: shorter, extreme droughts with different time patterns appeared. SPI indices of different time spans showed correlated structures in space and between each other, indicating structured relations.

Key words

drought standardized precipitation index drought indicator diagram HISTALP data set south-eastern Alps 


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Copyright information

© Brenćić 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Geology, Natural Sciences and Engineering FacultyUniversity of LjubljanaLjubljanaSlovenia

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