The impact of water resources development projects on water vapor pressure trends in a semi-arid region, Turkey

Tonkaz T., Cetin M. , Tulucu K.

CLIMATIC CHANGE, vol.82, pp.195-209, 2007 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 82
  • Publication Date: 2007
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s10584-006-9160-0
  • Title of Journal : CLIMATIC CHANGE
  • Page Numbers: pp.195-209


The aim of this study was to investigate long-term seasonal trends and decadal change patterns of monthly mean water vapor pressure (WVP) observation series at 16 meteorological stations scattered point-wisely over the Southeastern Anatolian Project (GAP) area in Turkey, where large-scale soil and water development projects have been put into practice since the 1970s. The record length of WVP observation series of each station varied between 31- and 41-years between 1962 and 2002. The monthly mean WVP observation series of each station was rearranged on seasonal basis. Sequential Mann-Kendall trend test, Sen's slope estimator, and Spearman's rank-order correlation tests were employed for detection of likely trends, and Kruskall-Wallis test was used to detect decadal variations in WVP series of each observation station. A possible area of representation for each meteorological station was determined by using the Thiessen polygons technique in a geographical information systems media. It was found that 15 seasonal WVP series have a positive trend covering 97% of the GAP area in the summer season; although one WVP series has a negative trend direction. However, in the spring season, 33% of the area had a positive trend, and a negative trend did not appear in any stations. WVP records in the winter season showed an increasing trend over 19% of the GAP area, whereas a decreasing trend prevailed in 9% of the area. The study results led us to conclude that the substantial increase of WVP observations in summer season could be attributed to both the shift from rain-fed agriculture to irrigated agriculture being made increasingly spacious year by year and building large water reservoirs in the GAP located in a semi-arid region. The results also indirectly suggested that the historical trends in the WVP parameters might be related to global climate change phenomenon.