Technical Reports

DROUGHT R&SPI Technical Report No. 25 - Future Meteorological Drought Projections of Regional Climate This study makes use of the most current Regional Climate Models (RCMs) forced with CMIP5 climate projections to quantify the projected change in meteorological drought for Europe during the next century at a fine gridded scale. Meteorological drought is quantified using the Standardized Precipitation Index (SPI), which normalizes accumulated precipitation for a specific location and time of year. Climate projections are based on output from CORDEX (the Coordinated Regional Climate Downscaling Experiment), which provides high resolution regional downscaled climate scenarios that have been extensively tested for numerous regions around the globe, including Europe. SPI is calculated on a gridded scale at a spatial resolution of 0.11 degrees (~12.5km) for the three projected emission pathways (rcp26, rcp45, rcp85). Models are first validated with respect to observed historical trends in meteorological drought from 1970-2005 and then comparing drought severity and frequency during three future time periods (2011-2040, 2041-2070, 2071-2100) to the historical control period (1971-2000). Historical and future projections are analyzed with regard to mean, variance, frequency of moderate and severe droughts, the distribution of drought durations, number of drought events, and the maximum drought duration. Results show significant increases in meteorological drought frequency and severity for the Mediterranean region along with increases for areas along the Atlantic coast and in southeastern Europe. The majority of northern Europe is projected to experience fewer precipitation-based droughts, as precipitation is projected to increase in these regions, though incorporating increased evapotranspiration may affect these drought projections. All results are robust, with good consensus among the suite of GCM/RCM model projections.
James H. Stagge, Jonathan Rizzi, Lena M. Tallaksen, Kerstin Stahl, Monday 30 March 2015
DROUGHT R&SPI Technical Report No. 24 - Systematic classification of drought vulnerability and relevant strategies - case study scale This Technical Report summarises the results from the analyses undertaken in the six DROUGHT-R&SPI Case Studies. The focus is on (current and future) vulnerability to drought and strategy-related actions for reducing future drought-related risks. The analyses verified that there cannot be a single strategy for drought risk reduction, as countries differ in institutional structure and legal framework and even regions in a country have different socio-economic characteristics and adaptation capacity. At the policy perspective, there are specific actions that should be promoted and enhanced in every region (i.e. monitoring & early warning, development of drought management plans, development of strategic reserves, and establishment of participation processes).
Eleni Kampragou, Dionysis Assimacopoulos, Joaquín Andreu, Carlo Bifulco, Alessandro de Carli, Susana Dias, Itziar González Tánago, David Haro Monteagudo, Antonio Massarutto, Dario Musolino, Javier Paredes, Francisco Rego, Irmi Seidl, Abel Solera, Julia Urqujo Reguera, Wouter Wolters, Monday 30 March 2015
DROUGHT R&SPI Technical Report No. 23 - DROUGHT Conference A brief overview of the organisational processes and outcomes of the “International Conference on DROUGHT: Research and Science-Policy Interfacing” is provided. The conference was held from 10th through 13th March 2015 in Valencia, Spain. With a total number of 135 participants, it included 61 oral presentations and 36 posters. A total of 73 of these contributions were also compiled in a book published by CRC/Balkema. A technical visit was organized on 13th of March. It included a technical visit to several water resources management facilities (e.g. reservoir, advanced irrigated agriculture, drinking water plant, waste water treatment plant, irrigated rice fields with re-used irrigation water, downstream wetland) within the Jucar River Basin with emphasis in the role they play in drought management and mitigation, and decrease of vulnerability and increase of resilience.
David Haro Monteagudo, Andrea Momblanch Benavent, Joaquín Andreu Álvarez, Abel Solera Solera, Javier Paredes Arquiola, Henny A.J. Van Lanen, Monday 30 March 2015
DROUGHT R&SPI Technical Report No. 22 - Exploration of future crop yield reduction from an ensemble of large-scale hydrological models Drought in soil moisture can have a large effect on the food security across the world. Due to climate change, drought events are expected to increase in severity and frequency in multiple regions across the globe. This increase in drought could lead to reduced crop yields in the future. In this study, we investigated the effect of a changing climate on crop yields across Europe. The effect on crop yields has been estimated with the FAO water production function. Potential and actual evapotranspiration data from three large-scale hydrological models (GHMs) have been used, which were derived using input data from one climate scenario (A2) and three different climate models (GCMs). The simulation results are from the natural situation (without irrigation). Changes in crop yields have been calculated between the control period (1971-2000) and the near future (2021-2050), and between the control period and the far future (2071-2100). As expected, results showed that already in the control period a high yield reduction was found for the southern parts of Europe, while the northern parts had a low yield reduction. The largest differences between the models in the control period were found in snow-dominated regions and regions along the western coast of Europe due to the different model structures of the GHMs. The different model structures of the GHMs caused a larger spread in the results than the different GCMs. For both the near future and the far future, an increase in mean yield reduction was found for the mid-latitudes in Europe. Because the southern regions already reached a high yield reduction in the control period, changes were smaller there. The most northern regions showed decreases in yield reduction. However, the signal-to-noise ratio was relatively low, while the spread in individual model results was high, indicating the high uncertainty in the changes towards the future. The changes found between the control period and the far future were larger than changes between the control period and the near future. Due to the influence of different model structures on snow, the differences between projected changes in yield reduction were larger for crops with part of their growing season in winter than for crops with the growing season only in summer. Overall, the results indicate that mean yield reduction will increase over a large part of Europe. This could heavily affect food security in the future.
M.H.J. van Huijgevoort and H.A.J. van Lanen, Thursday 26 March 2015
DROUGHT R&SPI Technical Report No. 21 - Guidelines for monitoring and early warning of Drought in Europe This report provides guidelines for drought monitoring and early warning in Europe. It describes how the design of a drought monitoring and early warning system is always a trade-off between: (i) objectives, (ii) data availability and structure, and the (iii) the interpretation of the data through the choice of drought indicators in combination with so called triggers. Triggers or alerts are indicator values at which actions are recommended. In the report, these three aspects of drought monitoring and early warning are discussed in detail. Special focus has been put on methodologies that are applicable at large scales, which are also discussed the context of ongoing efforts to build national and pan-European drought monitoring systems. The European Drought Observatory (EDO) and the Swiss National Drought Information Platform are briefly described in this context. An extensive list with references is provided.
L. Gudmundsson, A.F.v. Loon, L.M. Tallaksen, S.I. Seneviratne, J.H. Stagge, K. Stahl, H.A.J. van Lanen, Tuesday 2 December 2014
DROUGHT R&SPI Technical Report No. 20 - Future drought impact and vulnerability - case study scale This Technical Report focuses on future drought impacts and vulnerability to drought in the six DROUGHT-R&SPI Case Studies. The Case Studies represent three spatial scales of analysis (local, river basin and national) and have different contexts (physical, environmental, socio-economic), priorities in water and drought management, and background information (e.g. data, management plans) related to drought. As a result different approaches were followed and alternative sources of information were used for the implementation of the three main Activities in the Case Studies: (i) Development of socio-economic scenarios for a mid-term time horizon (2030), (ii) Future impact assessment for the different scenarios, and (iii) Future vulnerability assessment. The analyses were supported by (i) existing information in reports on future drought impacts, vulnerability and management, (ii) modelling of the water system in the Case Studies, (iii) surveys, and (iv) consultation with local stakeholders.
Dionysis Assimacopoulos, Eleni Kampragou, Joaquín Andreu, Carlo Bifulco, Alessandro de Carli, Lucia De Stefano, Susana Dias, Lukas Gudmundsson, David Haro-Monteagudo, Dario Musolino, Javier Paredes-Arquiola, Francisco Rego, Irmi Seidl, Abel Solera, Julia Urquijo, Henny van Lanen, Wouter Wolters, Friday 17 October 2014

Project objectives

  • Drought as a natural hazard, incl. climate drivers, drought generating processes and occurrences
  • Environmental and socio-economic impacts
  • Vulnerabilities, risks and policy responses, incl. the further development of drought management plans in support of EU and other international policies