University of Oulu

Ali Torabi Haghighi, Mojtaba Sadegh, Siavash Behrooz-Koohenjani, Ali Akbar Hekmatzadeh, Akbar Karimi & Bjørn Kløve (2020) The mirage water concept and an index-based approach to quantify causes of hydrological changes in semi-arid regions, Hydrological Sciences Journal, 65:2, 311-324, DOI: 10.1080/02626667.2019.1691728

The mirage water concept and an index-based approach to quantify causes of hydrological changes in semi-arid regions

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Author: Torabi Haghighi, Ali1; Sadegh, Mojtaba2; Behrooz-Koohenjani, Siavash3;
Organizations: 1Water, Energy and Environmental Engineering, Faculty of Technology, 90014 University of Oulu, Finland
2Department of Civil Engineering, Boise State University, Boise, ID 83725, USA
3Iranian Water Resources Management Company, Fars Regional Water Authority, Eram Blvd. Shiraz, Iran
4Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Shiraz University of Technology, Shiraz, Iran
5Built & Natural Environment, Caledonian College of Engineering, Muscat, Sultanate of Oman
Format: article
Version: accepted version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 2.2 MB)
Persistent link:
Language: English
Published: Informa, 2020
Publish Date: 2020-11-11


In semi-arid regions, reduced river flows present is a major challenge in water resources management. We present a new standardized contribution of rainfall to runoff index (SCRI) for evaluating changes in rainfall contribution to river flow. We employ the standardized precipitation index (SPI), standardized discharge index (SDI) and SCRI to characterize meteorological drought, hydrological drought and land-use change impacts on river flow, respectively. These indices are applied to the Mond River Basin (Iran), which is regulated by the Salman Farsi and Tangab dams since 2006. A new concept called ‘mirage water’ is proposed that represents the reduced water delivery to downstream areas due to new developments and water withdrawals in headwater tributaries. In particular, mirage water accounts for changes in upstream water consumption between the planning phase and construction/operation life of dams. We recommend that this concept be used for communication with decision makers and managers to clarify the need for revising dimensions of planned dams.

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Series: Hydrological sciences journal
ISSN: 0262-6667
ISSN-E: 2150-3435
ISSN-L: 0262-6667
Volume: 65
Issue: 2
Pages: 311 - 324
DOI: 10.1080/02626667.2019.1691728
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 1171 Geosciences
Copyright information: © 2019 Informa UK Limited. This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Hydrological Sciences Journal on 26 Nov 2019, available online: