SWAT Literature Database for Peer-Reviewed Journal Articles

Title:Impacts of climate change on the glacier melt runoff from five river basins 
Authors:Omani, N., R. Srinivasan, R. Karthikeyan, K. Venkata Reddy and P.K. Smith 
Journal:Transactions of the ASABE 
Volume (Issue):59(4) 
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URL (non-DOI journals): 
Broad Application Category:hydrologic only 
Primary Application Category:climate change 
Secondary Application Category:snowmelt, frozen soil and/or glacier melt processes 
Watershed Description:39,100 km^2 Vakhsh River, 31,890 km^2 Narayani River, 7,090 km^2 Mendoza River, 14,342 km^2 dry Andes drainage area and 3,728 km^2 upper Rhone River, located in respectively Southern Tajikistan, central Nepal, eastern slopes of the Andes mountains in Argentina, and western slopes of the Andes mountains in Chile and Switzerland. 
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Abstract:This study assesses the impacts of climate change on river flow from highly glaciered river basins using the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT). Analyses are conducted for five river basins that are global in coverage and vary in climatic condition. These include the Narayani (Nepal), Vakhsh (central Asia), Rhone (Switzerland), Mendoza (central Andes, Argentina), and central dry Andes (Chile). The predicted future climate change by two RCP (representative concentration pathway) climate change scenarios (RCP4.5 and RCP8.5) and six CMIP5 (Coupled Model Intercomparison Project 5) models are presented. Simulations of mean annual runoff, mean monthly runoff, high (Q5) and low (Q95) monthly runoff, and flow duration curves under baseline (1979-2008) and climate change scenarios are presented. Results showed that mean annual water yield under RCP4.5 and RCP8.5 increased 17% and 40%, respectively, for Rhone, 50% and 80% for Narayani, 65% and 116% for Vakhsh, 28% and 55% for Mendoza, and 17% and 30% for Chile. For a GCM ensemble and RCP8.5, all glaciers with 100 m water equivalent will disappear by 2100 across the Rhone, Narayani, and central Chilean river basins, while in Mendoza and Vakhsh at least 41% and 2%, respectively, of the glaciers will remain. 
Keywords:Alps, Andes, Central Asia, Climate change, CMIP5, Glacier, Nepal, SWAT