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  • Author: Balázs Benyhe x
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Abstract

The lowland region of the South-Eastern Carpathian Basin faces extreme hydrological conditions, therefore the more detailed understanding, monitoring and predicting of the hydrological regime on catchments have high importance. However, in the region only few measured data are available in terms of evaporation, runoff, infiltration and water retention, and this is especially true concerning small catchments. In the meantime these areas support extensive agriculture, therefore more information is needed to manage future drying and irrigational demands. In the present research runoff and discharge were modelled for a ten year period and compared to at-a-station measurement data on the Fehértó-majsa Canal, a sub-catchment of the Tisza River, in order to test the predictability of hydrological changes related to future climate change. Modelling was made by applying a coupled MIKE SHE/MIKE 11 model and integrating all available topographic, pedologic, climatic, hydrologic and vegetation data. Consequently, another motivation of the research was to assess the suitability, data demand and limitations of the MIKE modelling environment on lowland catchments. As from all available data sources soil data seemed to be the least accurate, sensitivity tests were made by changing different soil parameter. Based on the results, the developed model is highly suitable for the estimation of annual and monthly runoff. Nevertheless, concerning daily data a general overestimation of discharge was experienced during low flow periods, and a time lag appeared between measured and modelled discharge peaks during high flow periods. In all, the results of the study can greatly support the realization of water management and planning projects in the drought prone sand land catchments where only a few directly measured data are available

Abstract

Several environmental and economic consequences of drought and the accompanying water shortage were observed in the plain area of the Carpathian Basin in the last decades. This area is mostly used for agriculture, thus it is a key problem in the future to maintain food safety in the changing circumstances. Therefore, involvement and identification of areas affected by drought hazard and revealing steps of efficient adaptation are of high importance. In this study influence of drought severity on agricultural production is investigated in the Hungarian-Serbian cross-border area. The tendency in drought severity was analysed by PaDI and MAI drought indices. The effect of drought on agricultural production is evaluated on maize yield data as the most drought sensitive crop in the region. Increasing drought frequency and severity was indicated for the study area for the period of 1961-2012. The spatial assessment of annual PaDI maps revealed the higher exposure of the north and northeastern part of the study area to drought, where drought frequency was also experienced to be the highest. Increased sensitivity was detected based on maize yield loss after the early 1990s and annual yields were in strong connection with d rought severity. In spite of the technological development of agriculture, environmental factors still substantially affect crop yie lds. The observed unfavourable changes in the region mean that water management and spatial planning faces conceptual challenges to prevent and mitigate the damages of drought.