Global terrestrial water storage capacity and flood potential using GRACE

Edited: 2011-02-21
TitleGlobal terrestrial water storage capacity and flood potential using GRACE
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2009
AuthorsReager, J. T., and J. Famiglietti
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Volume36
Pagination23402
Date Published12/2009
Keywordsclimate, grace, terrestrial_water
AbstractTerrestrial water storage anomaly from the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) and precipitation observations from the Global Precipitation Climatology Project (GPCP) are applied at the regional scale to show the usefulness of a remotely sensed, storage-based flood potential method. Over the GRACE record length, instances of repeated maxima in water storage anomaly that fall short of variable maxima in cumulative precipitation suggest an effective storage capacity for a given region, beyond which additional precipitation must be met by marked increases in runoff or evaporation. These saturation periods indicate the possible transition to a flood-prone situation. To investigate spatially and temporally variable storage overflow, a monthly storage deficit variable is created and a global map of effective storage capacity is presented for possible use in land surface models. To highlight a flood-potential application, we design a monthly global flood index and compare with Dartmouth Flood Observatory flood maps.
URLhttp://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2009GeoRL..3623402R
DOI10.1029/2009GL040826