Articles | Volume 368
06 May 2015
 | 06 May 2015

Detecting runoff variation in Weihe River basin, China

F. Jingjing, H. Qiang, C. Shen, and G. Aijun

Keywords: Weihe River, runoff series, Mann-Kendall test, variation changes, attribution

Abstract. Dramatic changes in hydrological factors in the Weihe River basin are analysed. These changes have exacerbated ecological problems and caused severe water shortages for agriculture, industries and the human population in the region, but their drivers are uncertain. The Mann-Kendall test, accumulated departure analysis, sequential clustering and the sliding t-test methods were used to identify the causes of changes in precipitation and runoff in the Weihe basin. Change-points were identified in the precipitation and runoff records for all sub-catchments. For runoff, the change in trend was most pronounced during the 1990s, whereas changes in precipitation were more prominent earlier. The results indicate that human activities have had a greater impact than climate change on the hydrology of the Weihe basin. These findings have significant implications for the establishment of effective strategies to counter adverse effects of hydrological changes in the catchment.