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Climate Change and Environmental Sustainability
Year : 2020, Volume : 8, Issue : 2
First page : ( 181) Last page : ( 190)
Print ISSN : 2320-6411. Online ISSN : 2320-642X.
Article DOI : 10.5958/2320-642X.2020.00018.6

Impact of climate change on the hydrology of Bharathappuzha river in Kerala, India

Varughese Anu1*, Hajilal M.S.2

1Department of IDE, Kelappaji College of Agricultural Engineering and Technology, Kerala Agricultural University, Tavanur, Kerala, India

2Department of Agricultural Engineering, College of Agriculture, Kerala Agricultural University, Thiruvanthapuran, Kerala, India

*Corresponding author email id: anuvarughese31@gmail.com

Online published on 24 November, 2020.

Abstract

In this context, climate change has become a major threat for food security. This is especially true in a developing country like India, which is highly dependent on the monsoons for its agricultural production. Climate change also has a profound impact on the water cycle and water availability at the global, regional, basin, and local levels. The past climate data of the Bharathappuzha catchment area was analysed, and it was seen that the mean, maximum and minimum temperatures are having an increasing trend and that the average precipitation in the region is declining at the rate of 15 mm per year. Statistical comparison of historical climate model data with the observed data showed that the best model for the region is GFDL-CM3 regional climate model (RCM). Future data of RCP4.5 and RCP8.5 scenarios for the areas were extracted and bias corrected for use. The analysis of predicted rainfall indicates that there is a possibility for the shift in the rainfall pattern with maximum monthly rainfall to be shifted July-August rather than the previous trend of June-July. A decrease in south-west monsoon (June- September) and an increase in north-east (October- November) monsoon is also predicted. The physically based distributed hydrologic model Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) was used for modelling. The projections of the climate variables, rainfall and temperature were used and the potential effects of climate change on the hydrology of the river basin were assessed.

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Keywords

Bharathappuzha, Climate change, CORDEX, Hydrologic modelling.

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