Hydroclimatic shifts driven by human water use for food and energy production
2013 (English)In: Nature Climate Change, ISSN 1758-678X, Vol. 3, no 3, 213-217 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Hydrological change is a central part of global change(1-3). Its drivers in the past need to be understood and quantified for accurate projection of disruptive future changes(4). Here we analyse past hydro-climatic, agricultural and hydropower changes from twentieth century data for nine major Swedish drainage basins, and synthesize and compare these results with other regional(5-7) and global(2) assessments of hydrological change by irrigation and deforestation. Cross-regional comparison shows similar increases of evapotranspiration by non-irrigated agriculture and hydropower as for irrigated agriculture. In the Swedish basins, non-irrigated agriculture has also increased, whereas hydropower has decreased temporal runoff variability. A global indication of the regional results is a net total increase of evapotranspiration that is larger than a proposed associated planetary boundary(8). This emphasizes the need for climate and Earth system models to account for different human uses of water as anthropogenic drivers of hydro-climatic change. The present study shows how these drivers and their effects can be distinguished and quantified for hydrological basins on different scales and in different world regions. This should encourage further exploration of greater basin variety for better understanding of anthropogenic hydro-climatic change.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013. Vol. 3, no 3, 213-217 p.
Meteorology and Atmospheric Sciences Environmental Sciences
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-91541DOI: 10.1038/NCLIMATE1719ISI: 000319399000012OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-91541DiVA: diva2:634479
FunderSwedish Research Council, 2009-3221