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Hydrology and Earth System Sciences An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Discussion papers
https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-2019-9
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-2019-9
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 16 Jan 2019

Research article | 16 Jan 2019

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This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Hydrology and Earth System Sciences (HESS).

Assessing the response of groundwater quantity and travel time distribution to 1.5, 2 and 3 degrees global warming in a mesoscale central German basin

Miao Jing1,2, Rohini Kumar1, Falk Heße1, Stephan Thober1, Oldrich Rakovec1,3, Luis Samaniego1, and Sabine Attinger1,4 Miao Jing et al.
  • 1Department of Computational Hydrosystems, UFZ – Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research, Permoserstr. 15, 04318 Leipzig, Germany
  • 2Institute of Geosciences, Friedrich Schiller University Jena, Burgweg 11, 07749 Jena, Germany
  • 3Czech University of Life Sciences, Faculty of Environmental Sciences, Prague, 169 00, Czech Republic
  • 4Institute of Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Potsdam, Karl-Liebknecht-Str. 24–25, 14476 Potsdam, Germany

Abstract. Groundwater is the biggest single source of high-quality fresh water worldwide, which is also continuously threatened by the changing climate. This paper is designed to investigate the response of regional groundwater system to the climate change under three global warming levels (1.5, 2, and 3 °C) in a central German basin (Nägelstedt). This investigation is conducted by deploying an integrated modeling workflow that consists of a mesoscale Hydrologic Model (mHM) and a fully-distributed groundwater model OpenGeoSys (OGS). mHM is forced by five general circulation models under three representative concentration pathways. The diffuse recharges estimated by mHM are used as outer forcings of the OGS groundwater model to compute changes in groundwater levels and travel time distributions. Simulation results indicate that under future climate scenarios, groundwater recharges and levels are expected to increase slightly. Meanwhile, the mean travel time is expected to decrease compared to the historical average. However, the ensemble simulations do not all agree on the sign of relative change. The ensemble simulations do not show a systematic relationship between the predicted change and the warming level, but they indicate an increased variability in predicted changes with the enhanced warming level from 1.5 to 3 °C. This study indicates that a higher warming level may introduce more uncertain and extreme events for the studied regional groundwater system.

Miao Jing et al.
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Model code and software

mHM#OGS v1.0: the coupling interface between the mesoscale Hydrologic Model (mHM) and the groundwater model OpenGeoSys (OGS) M. Jing, F. Heße, R. Kumar, W. Wang, T. Fischer, M. Walther, M. Zink, A. Zech, L. Samaniego, O. Kolditz, and S. Attinger https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.1248005

Miao Jing et al.
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Short summary
This study investigates the response of regional groundwater system to the climate change under three global warming levels (1.5, 2, and 3 degree) in a central German basin. A comprehensive uncertainty analysis is also presented. This study indicates that the variability of responses increases with the amount of global warming, which might affect the cost of managing the groundwater system.
This study investigates the response of regional groundwater system to the climate change under...
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