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Defining Runoff Indices and Analyzing Their Relationships with Associated Precipitation and Temperature Indices for Upper River Basins in the Northwest Arid Region of China

Wang, Shaoping, Ding, Yongjian, Iqbal, Mudassar
Water 2017 v.9 no.8
arid zones, basins, cold, disasters, glaciers, regression analysis, rivers, runoff, summer, temperature, time series analysis, watersheds, weather, China
The northwest arid region (NAR) of China, located in a cold region, has been experiencing extreme weather and runoff events for years. Summer (from June to August) is the main season for forming runoff in this region. Summer runoff is contributed by glacial runoff in addition to precipitation in glacierized basins. The upper basins of Hei River, Shule River, Kaidu River, and Manas River with different glacier coverage and available daily average discharge data were selected in this study. Two runoff indices—maximum discharge difference (MDD) and accumulated direct discharge (ADD)—were defined and calculated for each runoff event in the time series of daily average discharge during 1961–2007. To provide scientific knowledge for managing water resources and preventing disasters, the relationships between summer runoff indices and their associated precipitation and temperature variables were obtained by linear regression analysis. Results suggest that the regulation of glacier on runoff is more significant with the increase of glacier coverage.