In this paper we investigate the feasibility of coupling regional climate models (RCMs) with landscape-scale hydrologic models (LSHMs) for studies of the effects of climate on hydrologic systems. The RCM used is the National Center for Atmospheric Research/Pennsylvania State University mesoscale model (MM4). Output from two year-round simulations (1983 and 1988) over the western United States is used to drive a lake model for Pyramid Lake in Nevada and a streamfiow model for Steamboat Creek in Oregon. Comparisons with observed data indicate that MM4 is able to produce meteorologic data sets that can be used to drive hydrologic models. Results from the lake model simulations indicate that the use of MM4 output produces reasonably good predictions of surface temperature and evaporation. Results from the streamflow simulations indicate that the use of MM4 output results in good simulations of the seasonal cycle of streamflow, but deficiencies in simulated wintertime precipitation resulted in underestimates of streamflow and soil moisture. Further work with climate (multiyear) simulations is necessary to achieve a complete analysis, but the results from this study indicate that coupling of LSHMs and RCMs may be a useful approach for evaluating the effects of climate change on hydrologic systems.
Additional publication details
|Publication Subtype||Journal Article|
|Title||Use of output from high-resolution atmospheric models in landscape-scale hydrologic models: An assessment|
|Series title||Water Resources Research|
|Publisher||American Geophysical Union|