Climate change and water resources of the Desna river basin till the middle of the XXI century
Keywords:climate change, water flow, soil water, Desna river, SWAT
This study presents the projections of temperature, precipitation, evapotranspiration, soil water, water flow components, and discharge changes in the streams across the Desna river basin in 2021-2050 against 1991-2020. Hydrological processes were simulated by the process-based SWAT (Soil and Water Assessment Tool) model. The predicted weather parameters (daily air temperature, precipitation, wind speed, humidity, and soil radiation) were loaded from regional climate models (RCMs) of the Euro-CORDEX initiative. The ensemble includes six RCMs, each was evaluated to represent the annual cycle of temperature and precipitation for the historical period (1970-2005). For the future period, we simulated two representative concentration pathway (RCP) scenarios — RCP4.5 and RCP8.5. Most of the scenarios project the precipitation increase by 5-10 % in winter and spring that causes the annual water discharge increase by 5-33 %, mostly due to the higher groundwater flow. We expect the same level or decrease of spring maximum discharge because of warming and a lower snow cover accumulation. The probability of droughts increases, because three of six RCMs project soil water loss by 10-20 % in summer. The results are useful for the Dnipro river basin management plan. Particular attention should be paid to adaptation measures in agriculture due to the possible lack of moisture for the plant growth.
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