Articles | Volume 23, issue 3
Research article
26 Mar 2019
Research article |  | 26 Mar 2019

Using paired catchments to quantify the human influence on hydrological droughts

Anne F. Van Loon, Sally Rangecroft, Gemma Coxon, José Agustín Breña Naranjo, Floris Van Ogtrop, and Henny A. J. Van Lanen

Data sets

Water Data Online BOM - Bureau of Meteorology

National River Flow Archive NRFA

37017 - Blackwater at Stisted NRFA

37011 - Chelmer at Churchend NRFA

Short summary
We explore the use of the classic paired-catchment approach to quantify human influence on hydrological droughts. In this approach two similar catchments are compared and differences are attributed to the human activity present in one. In two case studies in UK and Australia, we found that groundwater abstraction aggravated streamflow drought by > 200 % and water transfer alleviated droughts with 25–80 %. Understanding the human influence on droughts can support water management decisions.