Measuring and restructuring the risk in forecasting drought classes: An application of weighted Markov chain based model for standardised precipitation evapotranspiration index (SPEI) at one-month time scale

Zulfiqar Ali, Ijaz Hussain*, Amna Nazeer, Muhammad Faisal, Muhammad Ismail, Sadia Qamar, Marco Grzegorczyk, Faisal Maqbool Zahid, Guangheng Ni

*Corresponding author for this work

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Abstract

Drought monitoring and forecasting play a vital role in making drought mitigation policies. In previous research, several drought monitoring tools based on the probabilistic models have been developed for precise and accurate inferences of drought severity and its effects. However, the risk of inaccurate determination of drought classes always exists in probabilistic models. The aim of this paper is to reconnaissance the advantage of the weighted Markov chain (WMC) model to accommodate the erroneous drought classes in the monthly classifications of drought. It was assumed that to increase the precision in drought prediction, the role of standardised self-correlation coefficients as weight may incorporate to establish and restructure the accurate probabilities of risk for incoming expected drought classes in the WMC framework. Consequently, the current research is based on the experimental findings of seventeen meteorological stations located in the Northern Areas of Pakistan. In this study, the standardised precipitation evapotranspiration index (SPEI) at a 1-month time scale based drought monitoring approach is applied to quantify the historical classification of drought conditions. The exploratory analysis shows that the proportion of each drought class varies from zone to zone. However, a high proportion of near-normal drought classes has been observed in all the stations. For the prediction of future drought classes, transition probability matrices have been computed using R statistical software. Our findings show that the probability of occurrences of near-normal is very high. Overall, the results associated with this study show that the WMC method for drought forecasting is sufficiently flexible to incorporate the change of drought conditions; it may change both the transition probability matrix and the autocorrelation structure.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-10
Number of pages10
JournalTellus A: Dynamic meteorology and oceanography
Volume72
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1-Jan-2020

Keywords

  • Drought
  • Markov chain
  • standardised precipitation evapotranspiration index (SPEI)
  • autocorrelation

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