Journal cover Journal topic
Hydrology and Earth System Sciences An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 21, 1515-1526, 2017
http://www.hydrol-earth-syst-sci.net/21/1515/2017/
doi:10.5194/hess-21-1515-2017
© Author(s) 2017. This work is distributed
under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Research article
10 Mar 2017
Vegetation dynamics and climate seasonality jointly control the interannual catchment water balance in the Loess Plateau under the Budyko framework
Tingting Ning1,2, Zhi Li3, and Wenzhao Liu1,2 1State Key Laboratory of Soil Erosion and Dryland Farming on the Loess Plateau, Institute of Soil and Water Conservation, CAS & MWR, Yangling, Shaanxi 712100, China
2University of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
3College of Natural Resources and Environment, Northwest A&F University, Yangling, Shaanxi 712100, China
Abstract. Within the Budyko framework, the controlling parameter (ω in the Fu equation) is widely considered to represent landscape conditions in terms of vegetation coverage (M); however, some qualitative studies have concluded that climate seasonality (S) should be incorporated in ω. Here, we discuss the relationship between ω, M, and S, and further develop an empirical equation so that the contributions from M to actual annual evapotranspiration (ET) can be determined more accurately. Taking 13 catchments in the Loess Plateau as examples, ω was found to be well correlated with M and S. The developed empirical formula for ω calculations at the annual scale performed well for estimating ET by the cross-validation approach. By combining the Budyko framework with the semi-empirical formula, the contributions of changes in ω to ET variations were further decomposed as those of M and S. Results showed that the contributions of S to ET changes ranged from 0.1 to 74.8 % (absolute values). Therefore, the impacts of climate seasonality on ET cannot be ignored, otherwise the contribution of M to ET changes will be estimated with a large error. The developed empirical formula between ω, M, and S provides an effective method to separate the contributions of M and S to ET changes.

Citation: Ning, T., Li, Z., and Liu, W.: Vegetation dynamics and climate seasonality jointly control the interannual catchment water balance in the Loess Plateau under the Budyko framework, Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 21, 1515-1526, doi:10.5194/hess-21-1515-2017, 2017.
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Short summary
The relationship between controlling parameters of annual catchment water balance and climate seasonality (S) and vegetation coverage (M) was discussed under the Budyko framework and an empirical equation was further developed so that the contributions from M to actual evapotranspiration (ET) could be determined more accurately. The results showed that the effects of landscape condition changes to ET variation will be estimated with a large error if the impacts of S are ignored.
The relationship between controlling parameters of annual catchment water balance and climate...
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