Detecting seasonal cycle shift on streamflow over Turkey by using multivariate statistical methods

Detecting seasonal cycle shift on streamflow over Turkey by using multivariate statistical methods

Dogan Yildiz1 & Mehmet Samil Gunes2 & Fulya Gokalp Yavuz1 & Dursun Yildiz3

Received: 8 March 2016 /Accepted: 1 August 2017 /Published online: 19 August 2017 # Springer-Verlag GmbH Austria 2017


Climate change analysis includes the study of several types of variables such as temperature, precipitation, carbon emission, and streamflow. In this study, we focus on basin hydrology and, in particular, on streamflow values. They are geographic and climatologic indicators utilized in the study of basins. We analyze these values to better understand monthly and seasonal change over a 40-year period for all basins in Turkey. Our study differs from others by applying multivariate analysis into the streamflow data implementations rather than on-trend, frequency, and/or distribution-based analysis. The characteristics of basins and climate change effects are visualized and examined with monthly data by using cluster analysis, multidimensional scaling, and gCLUTO (graphical Clustering Toolkit). As a result, we classify months as low-flow and high-flow periods. Multidimensional scaling proves that there is a clockwise movement of months from one decade to the next, which is the indicator of seasonal shift. Finally, the gCLUTO tool is utilized in a novel way in the hydrology field by revealing the seasonal change and visualsizing the current changing structure of streamflow

1 Introduction

There is a serious threat of climate change on a global scale, which will affect all life on Planet Earth. Stern (2007) (which cites Burke et al. (2006)) states that The fraction of land area in moderate drought at any one time will increase from 25% at present to 50% by the 2090s, and the fraction in extreme drought from 3% to 30%.^ Even though there are plenty of critics of the pessimistic report of Stern (2007), underestimating the effects of climate change may be the worst mistake of humankind in history. Moreover, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC 1996) stated that the average surface temperature is increasing, and also that both droughts and floods would be increasing globally.

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