Acta Geographica Sinica ›› 2012, Vol. 67 ›› Issue (1): 62-70.doi: 10.11821/xb201201007

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Assessing the Impacts of Climate Variability and Human Activities on Streamflow in the Water Source Area of Baiyangdian Lake

HU Shanshan1,2, ZHENG Hongxing1, LIU Changming1,3, YU Jingjie1, WANG Zhonggen1   

  1. 1. Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, CAS, Beijing 100101, China;
    2. Graduate University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China;
    3. College of Water Sciences, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875, China
  • Received:2011-07-29 Revised:2011-10-18 Online:2012-01-20 Published:2012-02-28
  • Supported by:
    National Natural Science Foundation of China, No.40830636; No.40971023

Abstract: As the largest wetland in the North China Plain, Baiyangdian Lake plays an important role in maintaining water balance and ecological health of NCP. In the past few decades, the decreasing streamflow in Baiyangdian Basin associated with climate variability and human activities has caused a series of water and eco-environmental problems. In this study, we quantified the impacts of climate variability and human activities on streamflow in the water source area of Baiyangdian Lake, based on analyses of hydrologic changes of upper Tanghe catchment from 1960 to 2008. Climate elasticity method and hydrological modeling method were used to distinguish the effects of climate variability and human activities. The results showed that the annual streamflow decreased significantly (P > 0.05) by 1.7 mm/a and an abrupt change was identified around the year 1980. The quantification results indicated that climate variations accounted for 38%-40% of decrease in streamflow, while human activities accounted for 60%-62%. Therefore, human activities played a dominant influence in the decline of the streamflow in the water source area of Baiyangdian Lake. To keep the ecosystem health of Baiyangdian Lake, we suggest that minimum eco-water demand and integrated watershed management should be guaranteed in the future.

Key words: climate variability, human activities, climate elasticity, hydrological model, Baiyangdian Lake, Tanghe River