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Decomposition of Sources of Errors in Seasonal Streamflow Forecasting over the U.S. SunbeltSeasonal streamflow forecasts, contingent on climate information, can be utilized to ensure water supply for multiple uses including municipal demands, hydroelectric power generation, and for planning agricultural operations. However, uncertainties in the streamflow forecasts pose significant challenges in their utilization in real-time operations. In this study, we systematically decompose various sources of errors in developing seasonal streamflow forecasts from two Land Surface Models (LSMs) (Noah3.2 and CLM2), which are forced with downscaled and disaggregated climate forecasts. In particular, the study quantifies the relative contributions of the sources of errors from LSMs, climate forecasts, and downscaling/disaggregation techniques in developing seasonal streamflow forecast. For this purpose, three month ahead seasonal precipitation forecasts from the ECHAM4.5 general circulation model (GCM) were statistically downscaled from 2.8deg to 1/8deg spatial resolution using principal component regression (PCR) and then temporally disaggregated from monthly to daily time step using kernel-nearest neighbor (K-NN) approach. For other climatic forcings, excluding precipitation, we considered the North American Land Data Assimilation System version 2 (NLDAS-2) hourly climatology over the years 1979 to 2010. Then the selected LSMs were forced with precipitation forecasts and NLDAS-2 hourly climatology to develop retrospective seasonal streamflow forecasts over a period of 20 years (1991-2010). Finally, the performance of LSMs in forecasting streamflow under different schemes was analyzed to quantify the relative contribution of various sources of errors in developing seasonal streamflow forecast. Our results indicate that the most dominant source of errors during winter and fall seasons is the errors due to ECHAM4.5 precipitation forecasts, while temporal disaggregation scheme contributes to maximum errors during summer season.
Document ID
Document Type
Reprint (Version printed in journal)
External Source(s)
Mazrooei, Amirhossein
(North Carolina State Univ. Raleigh, NC, United States)
Sinah, Tusshar
(Texas A&I Univ. Kingsville, TX, United States)
Sankarasubramanian, A.
(North Carolina State Univ. Raleigh, NC, United States)
Kumar, Sujay V.
(NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Greenbelt, MD United States)
Peters-Lidard, Christa D.
(NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Greenbelt, MD United States)
Date Acquired
November 8, 2016
Publication Date
December 1, 2015
Publication Information
Publication: Journal or Geophysical Research: Atmospheres
Volume: 120
Issue: 23
Subject Category
Earth Resources And Remote Sensing
Report/Patent Number
Distribution Limits

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