Assessment of climate change impact on the Gomti River basin in India under different RCP scenarios

Biswajit Das, Sanjay K. Jain, Praveen K. Thakur, Surjeet Singh

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2 Scopus citations


Climate change can adversely affect the elements of water balance in river basins. This paper studies the effects of climate change on hydro-climatological components of the Gomti River basin using SWAT hydrological model. Model performance has been evaluated through sensitivity analysis, calibration, and validation. During calibration and validation time period, the Nash-Sutcliffe efficiency (NSE) and coefficient of determination (R2) values were obtained as 0.86, 0.87, and 0.79, 0.83, respectively. From the sensitivity analysis, it was found that SCS runoff curve number for antecedent moisture condition II (CN2) is the most sensitive parameter, followed by saturated hydraulic conductivity (SOL_K) and then available water capacity of the soil layer (SOL_AWC) etc. To assess the future climate change effects on hydrological variables, MIROC-ESM, MIROC-ESM-CHEM, MIROC_MIROC5, and MOHC_HADGEM2_ES Global Climate Models (GCMs) under RCP 4.5 and RCP 8.5 were applied in the calibrated SWAT model. The following trends were observed after applying the scenarios—the temperature is rising under RCP 4.5 (8.5) scenarios, near-century by + 0.24% (+ 0.65), mid-century by + 2.8% (+ 4.62), and end-century by + 5.25% (+ 10.98), respectively. Precipitation is declining under RCP 4.5 (8.5) by − 29.17% (− 29.65%), − 28.69% (− 28.88%), and − 23.82% (− 20.11%), respectively. Evapotranspiration under RCP 4.5 (RCP 8.5) is increasing by + 3.62% (+ 3.95%), + 4.30% (+ 5.38%), and + 5.49% (+ 6.03%), respectively. Consequently, streamflow under RCP 4.5 (RCP 8.5) is declining by − 31.27% (− 23.99%), − 27.45% (− 28.96%), and − 24.30% (− 18.03%), respectively in near, mid, and end century. The findings will be beneficial for managing future water resources in the Gomti River basin.

Original languageEnglish
Article number120
JournalArabian Journal of Geosciences
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 2021
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021, Saudi Society for Geosciences.


  • Climate change
  • Gomti River basin
  • Hydrological process
  • RCP scenarios
  • SWAT model
  • Streamflow


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