Main content area

Indicators and Aspects of Hydrological Drought in Lebanon

Shaban, Amin
Water resources management 2009 v.23 no.10 pp. 1875-1891
anthropogenic activities, climate change, drought, groundwater, humans, hydrologic cycle, monitoring, remote sensing, rivers, snowpack, water management, Lebanon, Mediterranean region
Change in climate conditions has become a global issue that has given a serious concern by many researchers. However, the availability of data in this regard is considered as a major element for optimum comparative analysis. The Mediterranean region is influenced by climate change, which is reflected mainly by its impact on water sources supply and flow regime. In Lebanon, these water sources are witnessing obvious quantitative decrease, thus affected the supply side, the so-called “hydrologic drought”. Therefore, many studies have been made to figure out a comprehensive understanding on water resources in Lebanon and their interrelation with climatic trends, but they often analyze one component of the water cycle. This study involves different indices of surface and subsurface water, thus, followed a comparative analysis of different hydrologic records. This was achieved by applying graphical illustrations of the numerical values adopted from available records. In this regard, different tools of analysis were used, and more certainly remotely sensed data were helpful for monitoring approaches. Therefore, results of the obtained comparative analysis revealed a clear regression in the amount of available water from different sources in Lebanon. These sources, which are under the impact of human like rivers and groundwater, showed a 23-29% decrease in the amounts of water since the last four decades. While sources, with less human interference, like snow cover and precipitation have been decreased by 12-16%. However, in both cases, the status is quite alarming and needs immediate water management plans to conserve water resources in Lebanon.