Sciences in Cold and Arid Regions ›› 2016, Vol. 8 ›› Issue (3): 212-226.doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1226.2016.00212

• ARTICLES • Previous Articles    

Temperature and precipitation changes in Extensive Hexi Region, China, 1960-2011

Wei Liu1, ZongXing Li1, Meng Zhu1,2, XiaoYan Guo1, LiJuan Chen1   

  1. 1. Cold and Arid Regions Environmental and Engineering Research Institute, Key Laboratory of Ecohydrology of Inland River Basin/Gansu Hydrology and Water Resources Engineering Research Center, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou, Gansu 730000, China;
    2. University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
  • Received:2016-03-11 Revised:2016-05-10 Published:2018-11-23
  • Contact: Ph.D.,Wei Liu,Cold and Arid Regions Environmental and Engineering Research Institute,Chinese Academy of Sciences.No.320,West Donggang Road,Lanzhou,Gansu 730000,
  • Supported by:
    This study was supported by the Key Project of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (KZZD-EW-04-05),a Key Project of the National Natural Science Foundation of China (30970492,31270489,31270482),and a Project for Incubation of Specialists in Glaciology and Geocryology of the National Natural Science Foundation of China (11J0930003).

Abstract: Global climate change has been evident in many places worldwide.This study provides a better understanding of the variability and changes in frequency,intensity,and duration of temperature,precipitation,and climate extremes in the Extensive Hexi Region,based on meteorological data from 26 stations.The analysis of average,maximum,and minimum temperatures revealed that statistically significant warming occurred from 1960 to 2011.All temperature extremes displayed trends consistent with warming,with the exception of coldest-night temperature (TNn) and coldest-day temperature (TXn),which were particularly evident in high-altitude areas and at night.Amount of precipitation and number of rainy days slowly increased with no significant regional trends,mainly occurring in the Qilian Mountains and Hexi Corridor.The significance of changes in precipitation extremes during 1960-2011 was high,but the regional trends of maximum 5-day precipitation (RX5day),the average precipitation on wet days (SDⅡ),and consecutive wet days (CWD) were not significant.The variations in the studied parameters indicate an increase in both the extremity and strength of precipitation events,particularly in higher-altitude regions.Furthermore,the contribution from very wet precipitation (R95) and extremely wet precipitation (R99) to total precipitation also increased between 1960 and 2011.The assessment of these changes in temperature and precipitation may help in developing better management practices for water resources.Future studies in the region should focus on the impact of these changes on runoffs and glaciers.

Key words: climate change, global warming, extreme events, China

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