Resources Ecology

Response of Water Levels to Precipitation Changes and Regional Urbanization in the Core Regions of the Taihu Lake Basin

  • 1. Applied Hydrometeorological Research Institute, Nanjing University of Information Science and Technology, Nanjing 210044, China;
    2. School of Geographic and Oceanographic Sciences, Nanjing University, Nanjing 210093, China

Received date: 2010-01-21

  Revised date: 2011-01-31

  Online published: 2011-05-20


The water level of river network significantly increased and flood disasters occurred frequently in the Taihu Lake Basin at the end of the 20th century under the influence of climatic and anthropogenic factors. This paper makes a classification analysis of precipitation and water level series and explores the trends of their changes based on daily rainfall and water level data. A two-parameter elasticity analysis is adopted to investigate the sensitivity of water level to precipitation changes and urbanization which is representative of human activities. The main results are as follows: First, the contribution of low ranks (Ranks 1-3) of precipitation in flood and non-flood seasons to the total precipitation in the same period is on the decrease while the contribution of the high ranks (Ranks 8-10) is on the increase, thus the concentration of precipitation increases. The characteristics of water level are similar to those of the precipitation. However, the concentration of high rank water levels increases much more significantly than that of the rainfall. Second, the elasticity of urbanization during baseline period (1954-1985 for flood season and 1954-1987 for non-flood season) is not significant at the 5% level, while it is significant during the comparison period and the contribution of urbanization is near that of the precipitation. The paper draws a conclusion that human activities characterized by fast urbanization have played an important role in the changes of water level in the core region of the Taihu Lake Basin since the 1980s. The results of the paper may provide support for flood control and urban planning and management in the study area.

Cite this article

YIN Yi-xing, XU You-peng . Response of Water Levels to Precipitation Changes and Regional Urbanization in the Core Regions of the Taihu Lake Basin[J]. JOURNAL OF NATURAL RESOURCES, 2011 , 26(5) : 769 -779 . DOI: 10.11849/zrzyxb.2011.05.005


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