Space-time changes in hydrological processes in response to human activities and climatic change in the south China Academic Article uri icon


  • Due to the influence of climate change and human activities, more and more regions around the world are nowadays facing serious water shortages. This is particularly so with the Guangdong province, an economically prosperous region in China. This study aims at understanding the abrupt behavior of hydrological processes by analyzing monthly precipitation series from 257 rain gauging stations and monthly streamflow series from 25 hydrological stations using the likelihood ratio statistic and schwarz information criterion (SIC). The underlying causes of the changing properties of hydrological processes are investigated by analyzing precipitation changes and information of water reservoirs. It is found that (1) streamflow series in dry season seems to exhibit abrupt changes when compared to that in the flood season; (2) abrupt changes in the values of mean and variance of hydrological variables in the dry season are more common than those in the streamflow series in the flood season, which implies that streamflow in the dry season is more sensitive to human activities and climate change than that in the flood season; (3) no change points are identified in the annual precipitation and precipitation series in the flood season. Annual streamflow and streamflow in the flood season exhibit no abrupt changes, showing the influence of precipitation on streamflow changes in the flood season. However, streamflow changes in the dry season seem to be heavily influenced by hydrological regulations of water reservoirs. The results of this study are of practical importance for regional water resource management in the Guangdong province. 2011 Springer-Verlag.

published proceedings


author list (cited authors)

  • Tu, X., Zhang, Q., Singh, V. P., Chen, X., Liu, C., & Wang, S.

citation count

  • 17

complete list of authors

  • Tu, Xinjun||Zhang, Qiang||Singh, Vijay P||Chen, Xiaohong||Liu, Chun-Ling||Wang, Shao-Bo

publication date

  • October 2012