Climate Change Research ›› 2020, Vol. 16 ›› Issue (5): 555-563.doi: 10.12006/j.issn.1673-1719.2020.008

• Cryosphere Service • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Impact of climate change on water resource cooperation between the upstream and downstream of the Lancang-Mekong River basin

YUN Xiao-Bo1,2(), TANG Qiu-Hong1,2(), XU Xi-Meng1, ZHOU Yuan-Yuan1, LIU Xing-Cai1, WANG Jie1,2, SUN Si-Ao3   

  1. 1 Key Laboratory of Water Cycle and Related Land Surface Processes, Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), Beijing 100101, China
    2 University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
    3 Key Laboratory of Regional Sustainable Development Modeling, Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, CAS, Beijing 100101, China
  • Received:2020-01-10 Revised:2020-05-21 Online:2020-09-30 Published:2020-09-30
  • Contact: TANG Qiu-Hong;


The Lancang-Mekong River basin flows southward across 25 degree of latitude with large climatic variations between the upstream and downstream. The concurrent drought and wet events will affect the water resources cooperation potential between upstream and downstream countries. Based on the Princeton precipitation dataset and global climate model data, the standardized precipitation index and Copula function were used to investigate the impacts of climate change on concurrent drought, concurrent wet and concurrence of different dry and wet conditions during the historical period (1982-2016) and future period (2021-2090) in the upstream and downstream of the Lancang-Mekong River basin. The results showed that compared with the historical period, the Lancang-Mekong River basin shows the similar change trend under the scenarios of RCP4.5 and RCP8.5 in the future period: the probability of concurrent wet will gradually increase (maximum 199.5%), and the probability of concurrent drought will gradually decrease (minimum -35.9%), and the probability of uneven water resource situation will greatly reduce in all periods (-53.1% - -42.5%). The results indicate that water resources cooperation between the upstream and the downstream of the Lancang-Mekong River basin may be adversely affected by climate change, and there is an urgent need for adaptation strategy to address water resources cooperation in the Lancang-Mekong River basin.

Key words: Transboundary river, Climate change, Lancang-Mekong River basin (LMRB), Copula function

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