Exploring hydroclimatic change disparity via the Budyko framework

Ype Van der Velde*, Nikki Vercauteren, Fernando Jaramillo, Stefan C. Dekker, Georgia Destouni, Steve W. Lyon

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


The Budyko framework characterizes landscape water cycles as a function of climate. We used this framework to identify regions with contrasting hydroclimatic change during the past 50years in Sweden. This analysis revealed three distinct regions: the mountains, the forests, and the areas with agriculture. Each region responded markedly different to recent climate and anthropogenic changes, and within each region, we identified the most sensitive subregions. These results highlight the need for regional differentiation in climate change adaptation strategies to protect vulnerable ecosystems and freshwater resources. Further, the Budyko curve moved systematically towards its water and energy limits, indicating augmentation of the water cycle driven by changing vegetation, climate and human interactions. This finding challenges the steady state assumption of the Budyko curve and therefore its ability to predict future water cycles.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4110-4118
Number of pages9
JournalHydrological Processes
Issue number13
Publication statusPublished - 30 Jun 2014


  • Budyko
  • Hydroclimatic change
  • Sweden
  • Water and energy balance


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