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Droughts in Pakistan: a spatiotemporal variability analysis using the Standardized Precipitation Index


  • Hua Xie
  • Claudia Ringler
  • Tingju Zhu
  • Ahmad Waqas


We investigated the spatiotemporal variability of drought incidence in Pakistan during 1960-2007 by calculating Standardized Precipitation Index fields for 3-, 6- and 12-month scales using gridded precipitation data. Principal component analysis revealed that droughts are wide-spread and often occur simultaneously over large areas. Furthermore, spectral analysis identified a 16-year drought recurrence period. Three such drought-intensive periods were identified: the late 1960s to early 1970s; the middle 1980s; and the late 1990s to early 2000s. Hence, drought patterns need to be integrated into long-term water planning as well as emergency preparedness.

Suggested Citation

  • Hua Xie & Claudia Ringler & Tingju Zhu & Ahmad Waqas, 2013. "Droughts in Pakistan: a spatiotemporal variability analysis using the Standardized Precipitation Index," Water International, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 38(5), pages 620-631, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:rwinxx:v:38:y:2013:i:5:p:620-631
    DOI: 10.1080/02508060.2013.827889

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Ahmad, Shahid, 2004. "Drought mitigation in Pakistan: current status and options for future strategies," IWMI Working Papers H036235, International Water Management Institute.
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