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Article

Long-Term Rainfall Trends and Their Variability in Mainland Portugal in the Last 106 Years

1
Instituto Superior Técnico (IST), Civil Engineering Research and Innovation for Sustainability (CERIS), 1040-001 Lisbon, Portugal
2
National Laboratory for Civil Engineering (LNEC), 1700-075 Lisbon, Portugal
3
Faculty of Civil Engineering, Institute of Environmental Engineering, Technical University of Košice, 042 00 Košice, Slovakia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Current address: Department of Civil Engineering, Architecture and Georesources (DECivil), Instituto Superior Tecnico (IST), The University of Lisbon (Universidade de Lisboa), Av. Rovisco Pais, No. 1, 1040-001 Lisbon, Portugal.
Received: 13 November 2020 / Revised: 3 December 2020 / Accepted: 7 December 2020 / Published: 10 December 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Variability and Drought Management)
This study addresses the long-term rainfall trends, their temporal variability and uncertainty over mainland Portugal, a small country on the most western European coast. The study was based on monthly, seasonal and annual rainfall series spanning for a period of 106 years, between October 1913 and September 2019 (herein after referred to as global period), at 532 rain gauges evenly distributed over the country (c.a. 6 rain gauges per 1000 km2). To understand the rainfall behavior over time, an initial sub-period with 55 years and a final sub-period with 51 years were also analyzed along with the global period. The trends identification and the assessment of their magnitude were derived using the nonparametric Mann-Kendall (MK) test coupled with the Sen’s slope estimator method. The results showed that after the initial sub-period with prevailing increasing rainfall, the trends were almost exclusively decreasing. They were also so pronounced that they counterbalanced the initial rainfall increase and resulted in equally decreasing trends for the global period. The study also shows that approximately from the late 1960s on, the rainy season pattern has changed, with the last months prior to the dry season showing a sustained decrease of their relative contributions to the annual rainfalls. Overall, the results support the hypothesis of less uncertainty on the pronounced decrease of rainfall over mainland Portugal in recent years, which is expected to continue. They also show that the asymmetry between a less wet North, yet still wet, and an arid South is becoming much more marked. View Full-Text
Keywords: climate change; mainland Portugal; rainfall trends; Mann-Kendall test; Sen’s slope test climate change; mainland Portugal; rainfall trends; Mann-Kendall test; Sen’s slope test
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MDPI and ACS Style

Portela, M.M.; Espinosa, L.A.; Zelenakova, M. Long-Term Rainfall Trends and Their Variability in Mainland Portugal in the Last 106 Years. Climate 2020, 8, 146. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cli8120146

AMA Style

Portela MM, Espinosa LA, Zelenakova M. Long-Term Rainfall Trends and Their Variability in Mainland Portugal in the Last 106 Years. Climate. 2020; 8(12):146. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cli8120146

Chicago/Turabian Style

Portela, Maria M., Luis A. Espinosa, and Martina Zelenakova. 2020. "Long-Term Rainfall Trends and Their Variability in Mainland Portugal in the Last 106 Years" Climate 8, no. 12: 146. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cli8120146

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