Publication Details

Category Text Publication
Reference Category Journals
DOI 10.1088/1748-9326/acd8d3
Licence creative commons licence
Title (Primary) On the role of antecedent meteorological conditions on flash drought initialization in Europe
Author Shah, J.; Kumar, R. ORCID logo ; Samaniego, L. ORCID logo ; Markonis, Y.; Hanel, M.; Attinger, S.; Hari, V.; Rakovec, O. ORCID logo
Source Titel Environmental Research Letters
Year 2023
Department CHS
Volume 18
Issue 6
Page From art. 064039
Language englisch
Topic T5 Future Landscapes
Data and Software links
Keywords flash drought; antecedent conditions; Europe; initialization; ERA5
Abstract The fast depletion of soil moisture in the top soil layers characterizes flash drought events. Due to their rapid onset and intensification, flash droughts severely impact ecosystem productivity. Thus understanding their initialization mechanisms is essential for improving the skill of drought forecasting systems. Here, we examine the role of antecedent meteorological conditions that lead to flash droughts across Europe over the last 70 years (1950--2020) using ERA5 dataset. We find two major flash-drought types based on a sequence of development of antecedent hydro-meteorological conditions. The first type is characterized by a joint occurrence of two mechanisms, a decline of precipitation in conjunction with an increase of the evaporative demand, both occurring before the onset of a flash drought event. The second type, on the contrary, is characterized by high precipitation preceding the event's start, followed by a sudden precipitation deficit combined with an increase in evaporative demand at the onset of the drought. Both drought types showed increased occurrence and higher spatial coverage over the last 70 years; the second drought type has increased at a much faster rate compared to the first one specifically, over Central Europe and the Mediterranean region. Overall our study highlights the differences between the two types of flash droughts, related to varying antecedent meteorological conditions, and their changes under recent climate warming.
Persistent UFZ Identifier
Shah, J., Kumar, R., Samaniego, L., Markonis, Y., Hanel, M., Attinger, S., Hari, V., Rakovec, O. (2023):
On the role of antecedent meteorological conditions on flash drought initialization in Europe
Environ. Res. Lett. 18 (6), art. 064039 10.1088/1748-9326/acd8d3