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Comparative analyses of SPI and SPEI meteorological drought indices (Case study: Golestan province)

Journal: Journal of Agricultural Meteorology (Vol.6, No. 1)

Publication Date:

Authors : ; ;

Page : 31-10

Keywords : Drought; Pearson’s parametric test; Golestan province; time series; Iran;

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Precipitation-based drought indices including the SPI generally neglect the effect of other variables such as temperature and evapotranspiration on drought intensity. However, some studies have confirmed the systematic errors involved. Therefore, alternate indices like Standardized Precipitation Evapotranspiration Index (SPEI) have been proposed. The current comparative study was aimed to evaluate the SPI and SPEI indices' skill for drought monitoring in different climatic regions of Golestan province. The results were analyzed in different seasons based on the correlation between SPI and SPEI indices classes in a 12-month window. The results showed that in more humid regions, the correlation between the two indices is higher. Similarly, in smaller time scales, the correlation was higher. The SPEI detects greater number of wet and dry spells comparing to SPI. Significant correlation between the two indices was observed at Ramyan station using Pearson's parametric test at 95% confidence level for 3 and 6 months time series. Seasonal frequency analysis of drought classes showed that both indices have more inter-classes variations in summer. Maximum number of severe and extreme drought events was observed at Ghaffar Haji station during summer using both indices. Also the comparison of SPI and SPEI time series showed that SPEI index detects longer wet and dry periods, but SPI index revealed bigger extreme values.

Last modified: 2018-11-07 14:59:17