Abstract

Parametric models of actual evapotranspiration (AET) based on precipitation (P) and potential evapotranspiration (PET) are region-specific and purely climate-induced and limited to represent the hydrological water balances. Basin-averaged model parameters considering P, AET, and runoff (R) using a machine learning algorithm, ensemble regression model, is proposed. Hydrologically calibrated model parameters allowed the study of AET under alterations of water use for current and for future scenarios under climate change. The effect of climate, water, and land use changes on AET was studied for the post-change period of 2004–2014 compared to pre-change period of 1965–2003 over Krishna river basin (KRB), India. The AET has increased under climate and water use changes while there is both increase and decreases of AET under land use changes for post-change period compared to pre-change period over the basin. Severe water shortages were estimated under pronounced increase of temperature (1.29 °C) compared to precipitation increase (2.19%) based on Coordinated Regional Downscaling Experiment (CORDEX) projections for the period 2021–2060. Hydrologically induced AET changes were more pronounced than climate for current climate; whereas climate-induced AET changes were found to be more prominent for projected climate signals over the basin.

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