Climate Change Research ›› 2021, Vol. 17 ›› Issue (3): 340-351.doi: 10.12006/j.issn.1673-1719.2020.102

• Impacts of Climate Change • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Evolution characters and causes of the dry season runoff for the major rivers in China during 1961-2018

SHU Zhang-Kang1,2,3(), ZHANG Jian-Yun1,2,3, JIN Jun-Liang1,2,3(), WANG Guo-Qing1,2,3, WANG Lin1,3, CAO Min-Xiong1,2,3   

  1. 1 State Key Laboratory of Hydrology Water Resources and Hydraulic Engineering, Nanjing Hydraulic Research Institute, Nanjing 210029, China
    2 Yangtze Institute for Conservation and Development, Nanjing 210098, China
    3 Research Center for Climate Change, Ministry of Water Resources, Nanjing 210029, China
  • Received:2020-05-25 Revised:2020-07-22 Online:2021-05-30 Published:2021-06-01
  • Contact: JIN Jun-Liang;


The dry season is an important period for drought, water ecology and water resources. The changes of runoff in the dry season affect the river ecology and water resources management directly. Based on grid meteorological data and the dry season runoff data of the major rivers in China, the trend of climate change and the evolution characteristics and causes of dry season runoff for major rivers in China from 1961 to 2018 were analyzed. Results indicated that the average temperature in the dry season rose significantly in the whole country, with the northern region warming up earlier and more significantly, and the southern region warming up significantly during in 2001-2018. About 84% of the regions in China had an upward trend of precipitation in the dry season, and about 42.2% of the regions had a significant increase. The precipitation in the dry season increased significantly in the northwest, northeast and southeast of China, while the change in the central part was not significant. The runoff of the middle reaches of the Yellow River and the Haihe River during the dry season decreased significantly. The dry season runoff of the middle reaches of the Yellow River in 2001-2018 decreased by 34% compared with the baseline of 1961-1980, and the Haihe River decreased by more than 80%. The dry season runoff of the upper reaches of the Songhua River and Yangtze River increased significantly. The dry season runoff of the upper reaches of the Songhua River in 2001-2018 increased by 67% and the Yangtze River basin increased by about 16%. The increase of precipitation in dry season led to the increase of runoff in the upper reaches of the Songhua River, Liao River, Huaihe River, Yangtze River and Pearl River. The significant rise in temperature has a significant negative effect on the dry season runoff in the middle reaches of the Yellow River and Haihe River. Human activities are the main factors affecting the decline of runoff in the middle reaches of the Songhua River, Yellow River and Haihe River during the dry season. Although the increase of dry season precipitation in the whole country has a positive effect on alleviating the ecological and water resource problems, the significant increase in human activities and temperature accelerates the consumption of water resources and increases the vulnerability of water resources.

Key words: Climate change, Human activities, Dry season runoff, Evolution characters, Causes

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