Climate change impact on precipitation and cardinal temperatures in different climatic zones in Iran: analyzing the probable effects on cereal water-use efficiency

  • Fatemeh Karandish
  • Seyed Saeed Mousavi
  • Hossein Tabari
Original Paper


Global greenhouse gases increase could be a threat to sustainable agriculture since it might affect both green water and air temperature. Using the outputs of 15 general circulation models (GCMs) under three SRES scenarios of A1B, A2 and B1, the projected annual and seasonal precipitation (P) and cardinal temperatures (T) were analyzed for five climatic zones in Iran. In addition, the probable effects of climate change on cereal production were studied using AquaCrop model. Data obtained from the GCMs were downscaled using LARS-WG for 52 synoptic stations up to 2100. An uncertainty analysis was done for the projected P and T associated to GCMs and SRES scenarios. Based on station observations, LARS-WG was capable enough for simulating both P and T for all the climatic zones. The majority of GCMs as well as the median of the ensemble for each scenario project positive P and T changes. In all the climatic zones, wet seasons have a higher P increase than dry seasons, with the highest increase (27.9–83.3%) corresponding to hyper-arid and arid regions. A few GCMs project a P reduction mainly in Mediterranean and hyper-humid climatic regions. The highest increase (11.2–44.5%) in minimum T occurred in Mediterranean climatic regions followed by semi-arid regions in which a concurrent increase in maximum T (2.9–14.6%) occurred. The largest uncertainty in P and cardinal T projection occurred in rainy seasons as well as in hyper-humid regions. The AquaCrop simulation results revealed that the increased cardinal T under global warming will cause 0–28.5% increase in cereal water requirement as well as 0–15% reduction in crop yield leading to 0–30% reduction in water use efficiency in 95% of the country.


AquaCrop model Climatic zones Future climate conditions GCMs SRES scenarios LARS-WG Uncertainty analysis 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Fatemeh Karandish
    • 1
  • Seyed Saeed Mousavi
    • 1
  • Hossein Tabari
    • 2
  1. 1.Water Engineering DepartmentUniversity of ZabolZabolIran
  2. 2.Hydraulics Division, Department of Civil EngineeringKU LeuvenLouvainBelgium

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