, Volume 6, Issue 11, pp 4463-4473
Date: 26 Sep 2012

Assessment of drought hazard impact on wheat cultivation using standardized precipitation index in Iran

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Abstract

The assessment of drought hazard impacts on wheat cultivation as a strategic crop in Iran is essential for making mitigation plans to reduce the impact of drought. Standardized precipitation index has gained importance in recent years as a potential drought indicator and is being used more frequently for assessment of drought hazard in many countries. In the present study, the calculated standardized precipitation index for 48 stations dataset in the 30-year time scale fulfilled 30 statistical matrices. The drought hazard index map was produced by sum overlaying the spatial representations of 30 statistical matrices and categorized into four levels of low, moderate, high, and very high, which demonstrated probability of drought occurrences of 10–20 %, 20–30 %, 30–40 %, and 40–50 %, respectively. Finally, after the general division of zonal statistics in drought hazard index map of Iran, major drought hazard zones were geographically classified into five zones. The statistical analysis showed a significant correlation (R 2 = 0.701 to 0.648) between drought occurrences and wheat cultivation including surface area and total production for these drought hazard zones.