Long-range hydrometeorological ensemble predictions of drought parameters

F. Fundel, S. Jörg-Hess, M. Zappa
2012 Hydrology and Earth System Sciences Discussions  
Low streamflow as consequence of a drought event affects numerous aspects of life. Economic sectors that may be impacted by drought are, e.g. power production, agriculture, tourism and water quality management. Numerical models have increasingly been used to forecast low-flow and have become the focus of recent research. Here, 5 we consider daily ensemble runoff forecasts for the river Thur, which has its source in the Swiss Alps. We focus on the low-flow indices duration, severity and
more » ... , with a forecast lead-time of one month, to assess their potential usefulness for predictions. The ECMWF VarEPS 5 member reforecast, which covers 18 yr, is used as forcing for the hydrological model PREVAH. A thorough verification shows that, com-10 pared to peak flow, probabilistic low-flow forecasts are skillful for longer lead-times, low-flow index forecasts could also be beneficially included in a decision-making process. The results suggest monthly runoff forecasts are useful for accessing the risk of hydrological droughts.
doi:10.5194/hessd-9-6857-2012 fatcat:qhvyib4dqrfjleaikqb5fc53vq