Causes éventuelles et implications de la variabilité spatio-temporelle des débits du fleuve Jaune

Translated title of the contribution: Spatio-temporal variability of streamflow in the Yellow River: Possible causes and implications

Chi Yuan Miao, Wen Shi, Xun Hong Chen, Lin Yang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


The water shortage in the Yellow River, China, has been aggravated by rapid population growth and global climate changes. To identify the characteristics of streamflow change in the Yellow River, approximately 50 years of natural and observed streamflow data from 23 hydrological stations were examined. The Mann-Kendall and Pettitt tests were used to detect trends and abrupt change points. The results show that both the natural and the observed streamflow in the Yellow River basin present downward trends from 1956 to 2008, and the decreasing rate of observed streamflow is generally faster than that of the natural streamflow. Larger drainage areas have higher declining rates, and the declining trends are intensified downstream within the mainstream. The possibility of abrupt changes in observed streamflow is higher than in natural streamflow, and streamflow series in the mainstream are more likely to change abruptly than those in the tributaries. In the mainstream, all the significant abrupt changes appear in the middle and latter half of the 1980s, but the abrupt changes occur somewhat earlier for observed streamflow than for natural streamflow. The significant abrupt change for the observed streamflow in the tributaries is almost isochronous with the natural streamflow and occurs from the 1970s to 1990s. It is implied that the slight reduction in precipitation is not the only direct reason for the streamflow variation. Other than the effects of climate change, land-use and land-cover changes are the main reasons for the natural streamflow change. Therefore, the increasing net water diversion by humans is responsible for the observed streamflow change. It is estimated that the influence of human activity on the declining streamflow is enhanced over time.Editor Z.W. KundzewiczCitation Miao, C.Y., Shi, W., Chen, X.H., and Yang, L., 2012. Spatio-temporal variability of streamflow in the Yellow River: possible causes and implications. Hydrological Sciences Journal, 57 (7), 1355-1367.

Translated title of the contributionSpatio-temporal variability of streamflow in the Yellow River: Possible causes and implications
Original languageFrench
Pages (from-to)1355-1367
Number of pages13
JournalHydrological Sciences Journal
Issue number7
StatePublished - Oct 2012


  • China
  • Yellow River
  • abrupt change
  • streamflow
  • trend

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Water Science and Technology


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