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3rd HyMeX workshop 1-4 June 2009 Heraklion (Gournes), Crete-Greece

Long- term discharge variability in the main rivers of the Mediterranean Sea basin

Cintia Uvo (Dept Water Resources Eng., Lund University; Euro-Mediterranean Centre for Climate Change (CMCC)); S. Gualdi (CMCC), E. Scoccimarro (CMCC), and A. Bellucci (CMCC)

Rivers discharging into the Mediterranean Sea strongly influences salinity regionally and, consequently, the circulation in the sea. At long-term, river discharge for most of the rivers within the Mediterranean Sea basin have been strongly controlled by human activities such as construction of dams and water use for irrigation. However, a climatic signal on a yearly to decadal scale can still be observed at the discharge of many of these rivers.

We propose in this abstract and poster, the investigation of the effects of long-term climate variability over the main rivers that discharge at the Mediterranean Sea using observed time series long enough to provide a reliable information of annual to decadal variability. This investigation will provide important subsidies for the improvement of the Mediterranean modelling.

The CMCC and Lund University are jointly developing such analysis with the objective of assessing and improving the high-resolution global model under development at CMCC. The MFS high resolution model for the Mediterranean Sea is coupled to this global model. We expect to be able to considerably improve Mediterranean Sea modelling by improving the knowledge of the climatic influence on its basin hydrology and, consequently, improving the modelling of its variability by a high resolution global model.

Further advantage of such study is the estimation of the long term variability of the Mediterranean Sea and its hydrology during the short future (next 50 years).