Main content area

Characteristics and Drivers of Reference Evapotranspiration in Hilly Regions in Southern China

Liu, Youcun, Liu, Yan, Chen, Ming, Labat, David, Li, Yongtao, Bian, Xiaohui, Ding, Qianqian
Water 2019 v.11 no.9
El Nino, altitude, climate, data collection, evapotranspiration, latitude, longitude, meteorological data, mutation, relative humidity, solar radiation, summer, temperature, winter, China
This paper has adopted related meteorological data collected by 69 meteorological stations between 1951 and 2013 to analyze changes and drivers of reference evapotranspiration (ET<inf>0</inf>) in the hilly regions located in southern China. Results show that: (1) ET<inf>0</inf> in southern China&rsquo;s hilly regions reaches its maximum in summer and its minimum in winter, and that the annual ET<inf>0</inf> shows an increasing trend. ET<inf>0</inf> happened abrupt change due to the impact of abrupt meteorological variables changes, and the significant year of mutation were 1953, 1964 and 2008. Most abrupt changes of ET<inf>0</inf> in meteorological stations occurred in the 1950s and 1960s. (2) The low value of ET<inf>0</inf> was mainly captured in high-altitude areas. Spatially, the ET<inf>0</inf> in the east was higher than that in the west. With the exception of a handful of stations, the trend coefficients of ET<inf>0</inf> were all positive, exhibiting a gradual rise. Changes in ET<inf>0</inf> in the east were much more sensitive than that in the west. Since ET<inf>0</inf> was affected by the cyclical changes in relative humidity, short-period oscillations were observed in all these changes. (3) In general, the ET0 was negatively correlated with relative humidity, and positively correlated with temperature and sunshine percentage. ET<inf>0</inf> is most sensitive to changes in average temperature, with a sensitivity coefficient of 1.136. ET<inf>0</inf> showed positive sensitivity to average temperature and sunshine hours, which were notable in the northeastern, and uniform in the spatial. ET<inf>0 </inf>showed negatively sensitivity to relative humidity, and the absolute value of sensitivity coefficient in the northwestern is smaller. The highest contribution to ET<inf>0</inf> is the average temperature (6.873%), and the total contribution of the four meteorological variables to the change of ET<inf>0</inf> is 7.842%. The contribution of average temperature, relative humidity, and sunshine hours to ET<inf>0</inf> is higher in the northern and eastern, northern, northern and eastern areas, respectively. Climate indexes (Western Pacific Index (WP), Southern Oscillation Index (SOI), Tropical Northern Atlantic Index (TNA), and El Ni&ntilde;o-Southern Oscillation (ENSO)) were correlated with the ET<inf>0</inf>. In addition, the ET<inf>0</inf> and altitude, as well as the latitude and longitude were also correlated with each other.