Characterisation of Soil Moisture – Precipitation Dependence over India Reveals New Insights

Ashish Manoj J

When we hear the word flood, the first thing that comes into our mind is huge rainfall events inundating large areas. Indeed, extreme precipitation events leading to floods and landslides have garnered attention worldwide, but what about the role played by the catchment conditions before the storm event?

In our recently published article in the Journal of Hydrology( Manoj J et al. 2022), we tried to understand the complex coincidence relationship between soil moisture anomalies and precipitation events over India. We made use of both traditional probabilistic tools and event-based measures for the same. Our work attempts to contribute to the understanding of the initiation of large-scale preconditioned compound flooding events over India. The patterns of dependence were unravelled for the country's major CWC basins, and we also investigated how they have changed over the last two decades.

Our study has implications for understanding flood generation mechanisms and the importance of antecedent conditions. The results obtained can supplement traditional flood hazard studies to improve risk preparedness across various stakeholders and vulnerable communities.

For more information and detailed conclusions, please have a look at our study:

Manoj J, A., Guntu, R. K., and Agarwal, A.: Spatiotemporal dependence of soil moisture and precipitation over India, J. Hydrol., 610, 127898, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhydrol.2022.127898, 2022.