AJCC  Vol.4 No.2 , May 2015
Climate Change Effects on Evapotranspiration in Mexico
Abstract: In Mexico’s case, the scarcity of water in the north of the country is worrying, even more from the agricultural point of view because according to the results of general circulation models, a major impact due to global warming is expected in this region, and it will have important repercussions on the rural sector in the north of Mexico. According to [1] the results of the sensitivity analysis made in this study indicate that the most vulnerable zone is the north of Mexico, wherein the increase of evapotraspiration (ET) is greater in comparison to the rest of the country; up to 8% annual average for a +3°;C growth in mean annual temperature. Due to some limitations in this preliminary investigation (e.g., global temperature data was used without regionalizing it), it was decided to make more detailed studies to estimate the climate change effects on ET on a regional scale, using the downscaling method to adjust temperature data. In this study a new methodology to estimate the ET before climate change scenarios is introduced, which includes the selection of the Hargreaves-Samani method (HS), calibrated and compared against the Penman-Monteith ASCE method in various irrigation districts in the northern part of the country, obtaining ET estimations with a 93% precision. This procedure was applied to nine states in north Mexico: Baja California, Baja California Sur, Chihuahua, Sinaloa, Sonora, Tamaulipas, Nuevo León, Coahuila y Durango. The principal results are enunciated as follows: the ET variations between the contemporary scenario and the 2030 scenario are quite significant, according to the data of 160 meteorological stations; for temperature variations between 0.1°;C to 0.45°;C the corresponding ET fluctuation goes from 2% in the current scenario to 7% in the 2030 scenario. These obtained percentages are greater than the ones expected to happen for the precision of the method. It is important to note that a 7% rise of ET (related to a regional temperature increase of approximately one degree) would represent in practice having more millions of m3 of water in dams to satisfy the water demand of crops.
Cite this paper: Mundo-Molina, M. (2015) Climate Change Effects on Evapotranspiration in Mexico. American Journal of Climate Change, 4, 163-172. doi: 10.4236/ajcc.2015.42012.

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