Investigating drought duration-severity-intensity characteristics using the Standardized Precipitation-Evapotranspiration Index: case studies in drought-prone Southeast Queensland

Dayal, Kavina S. and Deo, Ravinesh C. and Apan, Armando A. (2018) Investigating drought duration-severity-intensity characteristics using the Standardized Precipitation-Evapotranspiration Index: case studies in drought-prone Southeast Queensland. Journal of Hydrologic Engineering, 23 (1). 05017029. ISSN 1084-0699

Abstract

Drought characterization is crucial for identifying impacts on irrigation, agriculture, hydrologic engineering, and water resources management. This case study demonstrates the scientific relevance of the standardized precipitation-evapotranspiration index (SPEI) as a robust drought metric that incorporates influence of supply-demand balance. Using long-term data, the SPEI was calculated at multiple timescales to identify historical water deficit periods in selected drought-prone case study regions in southeast Queensland, Australia. The drought duration (D; number of months with continuously negative SPEI representing below average water resources), severity (S; accumulated negative SPEI in a drought-identified period), intensity (I; minimum SPEI), and return periods were enumerated for iconic dry events over multiple (1-, 3-, 6-, 9-, 12-, and 24-month) timescales. The SPEI was evaluated with corresponding drought indicators (precipitation and soil moisture) and climatological Rainfall Anomaly Index to yield drought severity information from a meteorological perspective. The results showed disparities in duration, severity, and intensity (D–S–I) of different droughts among the case study regions; reaffirming the significance of SPEI for regional drought impact assessment. Accordingly, this case study advocates SPEI as a convenient metric for detecting drought onsets and terminations, including drought ranking and recurrence evaluations that are vital statistics in hydrologic engineering.


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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Permanent restricted access to Published version, in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher. This case study was financed by the University of Southern Queensland (USQ) Office of Research and Graduate Studies (Postgraduate Research Scholarship, USQPRS) and School of Agricultural, Computational and Environmental Science.
Faculty / Department / School: Current - Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - School of Agricultural, Computational and Environmental Sciences
Date Deposited: 07 Nov 2017 00:57
Last Modified: 14 May 2018 01:31
Uncontrolled Keywords: Standardized Precipitation-Evapotranspiration Index; drought duration; severity; intensity; return period; multiscalar drought index; run-sum method
Fields of Research : 04 Earth Sciences > 0406 Physical Geography and Environmental Geoscience > 040608 Surfacewater Hydrology
04 Earth Sciences > 0406 Physical Geography and Environmental Geoscience > 040604 Natural Hazards
Socio-Economic Objective: E Expanding Knowledge > 97 Expanding Knowledge > 970105 Expanding Knowledge in the Environmental Sciences
E Expanding Knowledge > 97 Expanding Knowledge > 970104 Expanding Knowledge in the Earth Sciences
Identification Number or DOI: 10.1061/(ASCE)HE.1943-5584.0001593
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/33280

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