Terrestrial water storage (TWS) is an essential element of the water cycle and a key state variable for land surface–atmosphere interaction. This study investigates the changes of TWS in Xinjiang of China in response to climate change, using Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE)-derived data and ground hydrological/meteorological observations in 2003–2015. The results show that the TWS has an overall significant decreasing trend of −2.8 mm per year. TWS is in a state of surplus in the first half year (from February to July), while it is in a state of deficit in the second half year (from August to next January). The change rates in TWS exhibit strong regional disparities, with profound decreasing trends in Tianshan Mountains and increasing in Kunlun Mountains. Further analyses suggest that the spatial-temporal change of TWS was closely related to the variations in seasonal snow melt and glacier retreat due to temperature and precipitation changes.
Scopus Subject Areas
- Water Science and Technology
- arid zone
- climate change
- Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE)
- terrestrial water storage (TWS)