SWAT Literature Database for Peer-Reviewed Journal Articles

Title:Multi-model ensemble approaches to assessment of effects of local climate change on water resources of the Hotan River Basin in Xinjiang, China 
Authors:Luo, M., F. Meng, T. Liu, Y. Duan, A. Frankl, A. Kurban and P. De Maeyer 
Article ID:584 
URL (non-DOI journals): 
Broad Application Category:hydrologic only 
Primary Application Category:model comparison 
Secondary Application Category:climate change  
Watershed Description:Hotan River, a tributary of the Tarim River located in Xinjiang Province in northwest China. 
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Abstract:The effects of global climate change threaten the availability of water resources worldwide and modify their tempo-spatial pattern. Properly quantifying the possible effects of climate change on water resources under different hydrological models is a great challenge in ungauged alpine regions. By using remote sensing data to support established models, this study aimed to reveal the effects of climate change using two models of hydrological processes including total water resources, peak flows, evapotranspiration, snowmelt and snow accumulation in the ungauged Hotan River Basin under future representative concentration pathway (RCP) scenarios. The results revealed that stream flow was much more sensitive to temperature variation than precipitation change and increased by 0.9–10.0% according to MIKE SHE or 6.5–10.5% according to SWAT. Increased evapotranspiration was similar for both models with a range of 7.6–31.3%. The snow-covered area shrank from 32.5% to 11.9% between the elevations of 4200–6400 m, respectively, and snow accumulation increased when the elevation exceeded 6400 m above sea level (asl). The results also suggested that the fully distributed and semi-distributed structures of these two models strongly influenced the responses to climate change. The study proposes a practical approach to assess the climate change effect in ungauged regions. 
Keywords:general circulation models; climate change; hydrologic model; snow storage; Hotan River Basin