Journal cover Journal topic
Climate of the Past An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
https://doi.org/10.5194/cp-2018-45
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
Research article
23 Apr 2018
Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Climate of the Past (CP).
Decadal variation of extreme drought and flood in North China revealed by documentary-based seasonal precipitation reconstruction for the past 300 years
Jingyun Zheng1,2, Yingzhuo Yu1,2, Xuezhen Zhang1,2, and Zhixin Hao1,2 1Key Laboratory of Land Surface Pattern and Simulation, Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100101, China
2University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
Abstract. Using the 17-sites seasonal precipitation reconstructions from an unique historical archive, Yu-Xue-Fen-Cun, the decadal variations of extreme droughts and floods (i.e., the event with occurrence probability of less than 10 % from 1951 to 2000) in North China were investigated, by considering both the probabilities of droughts/floods occurrence in each site and spatial coverage (i.e., percentage of sites). Then, the possible linkages of extreme droughts and floods with ENSO (i.e., El Niño and La Niña) episodes and large volcanic eruptions were discussed. The results show that there were 29 extreme droughts and 28 extreme floods in North China from 1736 to 2000. Extreme droughts occurred more frequently (2 or more events) during the 1770s–1780s, 1870s, 1900s–1920s, 1940s and 1980s–1990s, among which the most frequent (3 events) occurred in the 1900s and the 1920s. While more frequent extreme floods occurred in the 1770s, 1790s, 1820s, 1880s, 1910s and 1950s–1960s, among which the most frequent (4 events) occurred in the 1790s and 1880s. For the total of extreme droughts and floods, they are more frequent in the 1770s, 1790s, 1870s–1880s, 1900s–1920s and 1960s, and the highest frequency (5 events) occurred in the 1790s. A higher probability of the extreme drought was found when El Niño occurred in the current year or the previous year. However, no significant connections were found not only between the occurrences of extreme floods and ENSO episodes, but also between the occurrences of extreme droughts/floods and large volcanic eruptions.
Citation: Zheng, J., Yu, Y., Zhang, X., and Hao, Z.: Decadal variation of extreme drought and flood in North China revealed by documentary-based seasonal precipitation reconstruction for the past 300 years, Clim. Past Discuss., https://doi.org/10.5194/cp-2018-45, in review, 2018.
Jingyun Zheng et al.
Jingyun Zheng et al.
Jingyun Zheng et al.

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Short summary
We investigated the decadal variations of extreme droughts and floods in North China using the 17-sites seasonal precipitation reconstructions from a unique historical archive. Then, the link of extreme droughts and floods with ENSO episodes and large volcanic eruptions were discussed. This study helps us understand whether the recent extreme events observed by instruments exceed the natural variability at regional scale, which may be useful for adaptation to extremes and disasters in future.
We investigated the decadal variations of extreme droughts and floods in North China using the...
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