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Trend analysis of annual precipitation of Mauritius for the period 1981–2010

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Abstract

This study researched the precipitation variability across 53 meteorological stations in Mauritius and different subregions of the island, over a 30-year study period (1981–2010). Time series was investigated for each 5-year interval and also for the whole study period. Non-parametric Mann–Kendall and Spearman’s rho statistical tests were used to detect trends in annual precipitation. A mix of positive (increasing) and negative (decreasing) trends was highlighted for the 5-year interval analysis. The statistical tests nevertheless agreed on the overall trend for Mauritius and the subregions. Most regions showed a decrease in precipitation during the period 1996–2000. This is attributed to the 1998–2000 drought period which was brought about by a moderate La Niña event. In general, an increase in precipitation levels was observed across the country during the study period. This increase is the result of an increase in extreme precipitation events in the region. On the other hand, two subregions, both located in the highlands, experienced a decline in precipitation levels. Since most of the reservoirs in Mauritius are located in these two subregions, this implies serious consequences for water availability in the country if existing storage capacities are kept.

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Correspondence to Olgu Aydin.

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Raja, N.B., Aydin, O. Trend analysis of annual precipitation of Mauritius for the period 1981–2010. Meteorol Atmos Phys 131, 789–805 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00703-018-0604-7

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