Potential effects of global warming on the Sacramento/San Joaquin watershed and the San Francisco estuary
Article first published online: 28 SEP 2002
Copyright 2002 by the American Geophysical Union.
Geophysical Research Letters
Volume 29, Issue 18, pages 38-1–38-4, September 2002
How to Cite
Potential effects of global warming on the Sacramento/San Joaquin watershed and the San Francisco estuary, Geophys. Res. Lett., 29(18), 1891, doi:10.1029/2001GL014339, 2002., and ,
- Issue published online: 28 SEP 2002
- Article first published online: 28 SEP 2002
- Manuscript Accepted: 31 DEC 2001
- Manuscript Revised: 20 DEC 2001
- Manuscript Received: 7 NOV 2001
 California's primary hydrologic system, the San Francisco estuary and its upstream watershed, is vulnerable to the regional hydrologic consequences of projected global climate change. Projected temperature anomalies from a global climate model are used to drive a combined model of watershed hydrology and estuarine dynamics. By 2090, a projected temperature increase of 2.1°C results in a loss of about half of the average April snowpack storage, with greatest losses in the northern headwaters. Consequently, spring runoff is reduced by 5.6 km3 (∼20% of historical annual runoff), with associated increases in winter flood peaks. The smaller spring flows yield spring/summer salinity increases of up to 9 psu, with larger increases in wet years.