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Nonparametric methods for modeling GCM and scenario uncertainty in drought assessment

Ghosh, Subimal and Mujumdar, PP (2007) Nonparametric methods for modeling GCM and scenario uncertainty in drought assessment. In: Water Resources Research, 43 (W07405). pp. 1-19.

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Hydrologic implications of global climate change are usually assessed by downscaling appropriate predictors simulated by general circulation models (GCMs). Results from GCM simulations are subjected to a number of uncertainties due to incomplete knowledge about the underlying geophysical processes of global change (GCM uncertainties) and due to uncertain future scenarios (scenario uncertainties). With a relatively small number of GCMs available and a finite number of scenarios simulated by them, uncertainties in the hydrologic impacts at a smaller spatial scale become particularly pronounced. In this paper, a methodology is developed to address such uncertainties for a specific problem of drought impact assessment with results from GCM simulations. Samples of a drought indicator are generated with downscaled precipitation from available GCMs and scenarios. Since it is very unlikely that such small samples resulting from GCM scenarios fit a known parametric distribution, nonparametric methods such as kernel density estimation and orthonormal series methods are used to determine the probability distribution function (PDF) of the drought indicator. Principal component analysis, fuzzy clustering, and statistical regression are used for downscaling the mean sea level pressure (MSLP) output from the GCMs to precipitation at a smaller spatial scale. Reanalysis data from the National Center for Environmental Prediction (NCEP) are used in relating precipitation with MSLP. The information generated through the PDF of the drought indicator in a future year may be used in long-term planning decisions. The methodology is demonstrated with a case study of the drought-prone Orissa meteorological subdivision in India.

Item Type: Journal Article
Publication: Water Resources Research
Publisher: American Geophysical Union
Additional Information: Copyright of this article belongs to American Geophysical Union.
Keywords: GCM;Scenario;Uncertainty line
Department/Centre: Division of Mechanical Sciences > Civil Engineering
Date Deposited: 20 Sep 2007
Last Modified: 03 Feb 2012 07:00
URI: http://eprints.iisc.ac.in/id/eprint/11857

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