Monsoon Variability and the Mekong Flood Regime
The Mekong River in Southeast Asia owes its tidal annual flood regime to the monsoon. But the monsoon is a spatially and temporally variable circulation, with different annual to millennial variability for different regions. We focus on the separation between the Indian and the Western North-Pacific monsoon component to shed light on the interannual flood variability of the Mekong River.
The variance of flood discharge at four stations on the Mekong River is analyzed, as well as two well-known monsoon indices that represent annual monsoon intensity for the Indian Ocean monsoon circulation and for the Western North-Pacific monsoon circulation. An effort is made to identify the coarser temporal resolution that contains most of the interannual variability.
A close connection between the Western North-Pacific monsoon and the flood discharge in Kratie is found. This correlation is stronger for periods with enhanced variance. We find that the Western North-Pacific monsoon variance is a good predictor of flood variance. This dependence influences the probability of occurrence of a flood in the Mekong Delta.
KeywordsInterannual Variability Indian Monsoon Flood Hazard Mekong Delta Flood Wave
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