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Hydrology and Earth System Sciences An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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HESS | Articles | Volume 23, issue 5
Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 23, 2491-2505, 2019
https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-23-2491-2019
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 23, 2491-2505, 2019
https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-23-2491-2019
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 28 May 2019

Research article | 28 May 2019

Reconstructed natural runoff helps to quantify the relationship between upstream water use and downstream water scarcity in China's river basins

Xinyao Zhou et al.
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Al-Faraj, F. A. M. and Tigkas, D.: Impacts of multi-year droughts and upstream human-induced activities on the development of a semi-arid transboundary basin, Water Resour. Manage., 30, 5131–5143, 2016. 
Allen, R. G., Pereira, L. S., Raes, D., and Smith, M.: Crop evapotranspiration – Guidelines for computing crop water requirements, FAO Irrigation and drainage paper 56, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Rome, 1998. 
Arfanuzzaman, M. and Syed, M.: Water demand and ecosystem nexus in the transboundary river basin: a zero-sum game, Environ. Dev. Sustain., 20, 963–974, 2018. 
Arora, V. K.: The use of the aridity index to assess climate change effect on annual runoff, J. Hydrol., 265, 164–177, 2002. 
Bautista, F., Bautista, D., and Delgado-Carranza, C.: Calibration of the equations of Hargreaves and Thornthwaite to estimate the potential evapotranspiration in semi-arid and subhumid tropical climates for regional applications, Atmósfera, 22, 331–348, 2009. 
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Quantifying the impact of upstream water use on downstream water scarcity is critical for water management. Comparing natural and observed runoff in China's 12 basins, this study found surface water use increased 1.6 times for the 1970s-2000s, driving most arid and semi-arid (ASA) basins into water scarcity status. The water stress decreased downstream in ASA basins due to reduced upstream inflow since the 2000s. Upstream water use caused over a 30 % increase in water scarcity in ASA basins.
Quantifying the impact of upstream water use on downstream water scarcity is critical for water...
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