A multiple scenario-based ensemble prediction (MSEP) method is developed for exploring the impacts of climate and land-use changes on runoff in the Naryn River Basin. MSEP incorporates multiple global climate models, Cellular Automata–Markov and Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) within a general framework. MSEP can simultaneously analyze the effects of climate and land-use changes on runoff, as well as provide multiple climate and land-use scenarios to reflect the associated uncertainties in runoff simulation and prediction. Totally 96 scenarios are considered to analyze the trend and range of future runoff. Ensemble prediction results reveal that (i) climate change plays a leading role in runoff variation; (ii) compared to the baseline values, peak flow would increase 36.6% and low flow would reduce 36.8% by the 2080s, which would result in flooding and drought risks in the future and (iii) every additional hectare of arable land would increase the water deficit by an average of 10.9 × 103 m3, implying that the arable land should be carefully expanded in the future. Results suggest that, to mitigate the impact of climate change, the rational control of arable land and the active promotion of irrigation efficiency are beneficial for water resources management and ecological environmental recovery.

  • A multiple scenario-based ensemble prediction (MSEP) method has been developed.

  • MSEP can analyze the combined effects of climate and land-use changes on runoff.

  • Ranges of runoff in the Naryn River Basin are obtained under 96 scenarios.

  • Climate change is the main driver for the increase of runoff and peak flow.

Graphical Abstract

Graphical Abstract
Graphical Abstract
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