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Probabilistic impacts of climate change on flood frequency using response surfaces II: Scotland


This paper uses a sensitivity framework approach to look at the probabilistic impacts of climate change on 20-year return period flood peaks, by applying a set of typical response surfaces alongside the probabilistic UK Climate Projections (UKCP09) for 10 river-basin regions over Scotland. The first paper of the pair used the same approach for 10 river-basin regions over England and Wales. This paper develops the methodology for Scotland, by first enabling better estimation of the response type of Scottish catchments. Then, as for England and Wales, the potential range of impacts is shown for different types of catchment in each river-basin region in Scotland, and regional average impact ranges are estimated. Results show clear differences in impacts between catchments of different types and between regions. The Argyll and West Highland regions show the highest impacts, while the North-East Scotland region shows the lowest impacts. The overall ranges are generally smaller for Scotland than England and Wales.

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This research was supported by the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) (contract R10023PUR) with additional contribution from the NERC-CEH Water science programme. The UK Climate Projections data have been made available by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) and Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC) under licence from the Met Office, Newcastle University, University of East Anglia and Proudman Oceanographic Laboratory. These organisations accept no responsibility for any inaccuracies or omissions in the data, nor for any loss or damage directly or indirectly caused to any person or body by reason of, or arising out of, any use of this data.

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Correspondence to A. L. Kay.

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Kay, A.L., Crooks, S.M., Davies, H.N. et al. Probabilistic impacts of climate change on flood frequency using response surfaces II: Scotland. Reg Environ Change 14, 1243–1255 (2014).

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  • Response surfaces
  • Climate change
  • Floods
  • Adaptation
  • UKCP09