The Po River is a crucial resource for the Italian economy, since 40% of the gross domestic product comes fromthis area. It is thus crucial to quantify the impact of climate change on this water resource in order to plan for future water use. In this paper a mini ensemble of 8 hydrological simulations is completed from1960 to 2050 under the A1B emission scenario, by using the output of two regional climate models as input (REMO and RegCM) at two different resolutions (25 km–10 km and 25 km–3 km). The river discharge at the outlet point of the basin shows a change in the spring peak of the annual cycle, with a one month shift fromMay to April. This shift is entirely due to the change in snowmelt timing which drives most of the discharge during this period. Two other important changes are an increase of discharge in the wintertime and a decrease in the fall from September to November. The uncertainty associated with the winter change is larger compared to that in the fall. The spring shift and the fall decrease of discharge imply an extension of the hydrological dry season and thus an increase in water stress over the basin. The spatial distributions of the discharge changes are in agreement with what is observed at the outlet point and the uncertainty associated with these changes is proportional to the amplitude of the signal. The analysis of the changes in the anomaly distribution of discharge shows that both the increases and decreases in seasonal discharge are tied to the changes in the tails of the distribution, i.e. to the increase or decrease of extreme events.

Changing hydrological conditions in the Po basin under global warming

VERDECCHIA, Marco;Valentina Colaiuda;
2014-01-01

Abstract

The Po River is a crucial resource for the Italian economy, since 40% of the gross domestic product comes fromthis area. It is thus crucial to quantify the impact of climate change on this water resource in order to plan for future water use. In this paper a mini ensemble of 8 hydrological simulations is completed from1960 to 2050 under the A1B emission scenario, by using the output of two regional climate models as input (REMO and RegCM) at two different resolutions (25 km–10 km and 25 km–3 km). The river discharge at the outlet point of the basin shows a change in the spring peak of the annual cycle, with a one month shift fromMay to April. This shift is entirely due to the change in snowmelt timing which drives most of the discharge during this period. Two other important changes are an increase of discharge in the wintertime and a decrease in the fall from September to November. The uncertainty associated with the winter change is larger compared to that in the fall. The spring shift and the fall decrease of discharge imply an extension of the hydrological dry season and thus an increase in water stress over the basin. The spatial distributions of the discharge changes are in agreement with what is observed at the outlet point and the uncertainty associated with these changes is proportional to the amplitude of the signal. The analysis of the changes in the anomaly distribution of discharge shows that both the increases and decreases in seasonal discharge are tied to the changes in the tails of the distribution, i.e. to the increase or decrease of extreme events.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11697/4578
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