Assimilation of Snowmelt Runoff Model (SRM) Using Satellite Remote Sensing Data in Budhi Gandaki River Basin, Nepal
The Himalayan region, a major source of fresh water, is recognized as a water tower of the world. Many perennial rivers originate from Nepal Himalaya, located in the central part of the Himalayan region. Snowmelt water is essential freshwater for living, whereas it poses flood disaster potential, which is a major challenge for sustainable development. Climate change also largely affects snowmelt hydrology. Therefore, river discharge measurement requires crucial attention in the face of climate
... hange, particularly in the Himalayan region. The snowmelt runoff model (SRM) is a frequently used method to measure river discharge in snow-fed mountain river basins. This study attempts to investigate snowmelt contribution in the overall discharge of the Budhi Gandaki River Basin (BGRB) using satellite remote sensing data products through the application of the SRM model. The model outputs were validated based on station measured river discharge data. The results show that SRM performed well in the study basin with a coefficient of determination (R2) >0.880. Moreover, this study found that the moderate resolution imaging spectroradiometer (MODIS) snow cover data and European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF) meteorological datasets are highly applicable to the SRM in the Himalayan region. The study also shows that snow days have slightly decreased in the last three years, hence snowmelt contribution in overall discharge has decreased slightly in the study area. Finally, this study concludes that MOD10A2 and ECMWF precipitation and two-meter temperature products are highly applicable to measure snowmelt and associated discharge through SRM in the BGRB. Moreover, it also helps with proper freshwater planning, efficient use of winter water flow, and mitigating and preventive measures for the flood disaster.