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Volume 12, Problème 12 (2021)

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Assess the Impacts of Climate Change on the Patterns of Rainfall, Temperature, and Stream Flow in the Abelti Watershed of Southwestern Ethiopia

Beyene Akirso Alehu*, Seble Gizachew Bitana

Changes in rainfall, temperature and stream flow (stf) will be one of the most critical factors determining the overall impact of climate change (CC). Thus, in this study we evaluated rainfall (rf), temperature, and stf pattern under changing climate in the Abelti-Watershed (a sub-watershed of upper Omo Gibe basin), Ethiopia. The Representative Concentration Pathway (RCP) scenarios of Hadley Global Environment Model 2-Earth System (HadGEM2-ES) under Coordinated Regional Climate Downscaling Experiment (CORDEX)-Africa database selected for the near (2011- 2040), med (2041-2070), and end (2071-2100) periods. Hydrologic Engineering Centers-Hydrologic Modelling System (HEC-HMS) model applied for stf projection. XL-STAT conducts average annual and seasonal rf, minimum and maximum temperature (tmin&tmax), and stf trend tests. Mean seasonal and annual rf and stf variation evaluation taken using the coefficient of variation (CV). Finally, the impact of CC analysis is taken based on the baseline period. The results revealed that the climate model projection is successful for given weather stations. HEC-HMS model showed a satisfactory performance during calibration (R2=0.82) and validation (R2=0.78). The MK trend of tmin&tmax show significantly increasing; whereas rf and stf show insignificantly decreasing except under RCP8.5. The rf and stf CV analysis indicated less, moderate, and high in the study area. And the future long year average annual rf increased by -3.6%, -1.9% and -7.7%; temperature +1.15%, +2.2% and +4.2%; and stf -2.9%, -0.05% and -8.5% under RCP2.6, RCP4.5 and RCP8.5 respectively. Thus, the decrement in rf and the increment in temperature lead to more evapotranspiration and affect the stf negatively. In conclusion, stf in the Abelti-watershed could significantly decline with adverse consequences for water supplies, agriculture, and ecosystem health for the future. Therefore, this study may contribute to the planning and implementation of sustainable resources development and management strategies and help to mitigate the consequences of CC.

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