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  • Climatology and vulnerability to climate change in the “Altos

    de Jalisco” region, Mexico

    Ramírez-Sánchez HU1, García Guadalupe ME1, Ulloa-Godínez HH1, Garcia-Concepción FO1,

    Fajardo-Montiel AL2.

    1Institute of Astronomy and Meteorology CUCEI, 2Center for Strategic Studies, 3University

    Center of Tonala and 4University Center of Sciences Biological Agricultural. University of

    Guadalajara, Mexico. Av. Vallarta 2602. Col. Arcos Vallarta, Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico,

    Tel/Fax 52 3336159829


    The State of Jalisco is one of the regions of Mexico that presents the highest levels of

    vulnerability to climate change in the country, so it is necessary to identify the areas

    which pose the highest risk for the effects of climate change. At present, it is important

    to have information to design and implement measures to reduce the effects of climate

    change on the supply of drinking water. Within the state of Jalisco the northern, high

    altitude regions are the most vulnerable to water scarcity according to their climatology

    and projections of climate change scenarios, so it is of huge importance to show the

    current and future deficit of water. The objective of this study is to expose the

    conditions of water resources in this region of great economic importance for the state

    of Jalisco and Mexico.

    The methodology to be used is to demonstrate the climatic and bioclimatic conditions,

    the changes experienced in this region caused by climate change through R-Climdex

    indicators, and projections of future scenarios of temperature, humidity and

    precipitation using PRECIS, to finally expose the vulnerability of the water resource in

    the region.

    The results show agreement with the IPCC (2007) regarding global estimates of water

    availability; By the middle of this century there will be a 10-30% decrease in freshwater

    in the dry tropical zones (Mexico and Jalisco state) that already suffer from water stress

    from surface and ground water. It is likely that as the century progresses, with

    increasing temperature, and decreasing relative humidity and precipitation intensity,

    there will be an increase in the extent of drought-affected areas. Likewise, a decrease in

    the reserves of stored water is anticipated, which would reduce the availability of water

    for this region as we approach the end of the century.

    Water-19, Paris, 22-24 July 2019 Pag. 24

  • Keywords: Climatology, vulnerability, climate change, “Altos de Jalisco” Region.


    Since the industrial revolution, there has been a marked increase in the emission of

    greenhouse gases (mainly CO2 and CH4) into the atmosphere, raising the atmospheric

    temperatures at the Earth's surface. The fourth assessment report of the

    Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC 2007) concluded that average

    surface temperatures have increased 0.74 ± 0.18 °C is considered a linear trend in the

    past 100 years (1906-2005). The rate of warming in the past 50 years is nearly twice

    that in the past 100 years (IPCC 2007), largely attributed to anthropogenic influences.

    However the fifth assessment report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change

    (IPCC 2014) estimated a warming of 0.85 ± 0.20 °C, during the period 1880-2012, for

    which have occurred independently several sets of data. In the case of Mexico, the

    average maximum and minimum temperatures have increased by about 0.2 °C per

    decade during the period 1971-2003, for the country as a whole (Ramírez et al, 2015).

    Regional studies on changes in temperature for China (Liu et al., 2004), Japan (Yue and

    Hashino 2003), Korean Peninsula (Chung and Yoon 2000), the Mediterranean region

    (Kutiel and Maheras 1998; Hasanean 2001), and Europe show consistent patterns with a

    general warming. The last decade of the last century and the first of this century have

    been the warmest years ever recorded. The phenomenon has been global in nature,

    although warming trends do not show a great spatial and temporal variability.

    Until recently, most of the long term studies on global climate change through

    temperature records only focused on changes in mean values. Temperature is an integral

    component of climate variability and change on the regional scale. The extremes in

    temperatures, characterized by tolerance levels exceeding daily temperature and their

    frequency, are of great interest in terms of human impact. It is seen to have important

    socio-economic implications, such as its direct impact on the performance of farming,

    power generation and consumption, and human health among others (Easterling et al.,

    2000; Meehl et al., 2000a, b; Walther et al., 2002). There are many regional studies on

    the basis of recorded data and only some results of model simulations.

    More reliable, regional climate change projections are now available in many regions of

    the world due to advances in modeling and understanding of the physical processes of

    the climate system. However, constraints arise due to uncertainties in factors such as

    Water-19, Paris, 22-24 July 2019 Pag. 25

  • change of population, economic variables, technological developments and other

    relevant characteristics of future human activity, which constitute important ingredients

    of climate simulation models. Therefore, certain carefully considered scenarios are

    developed to project global climate scenarios planned for the future and their possible

    consequences. Houghton et al., (1996) has come to the conclusion that the projections

    of the statistical aspects of weather phenomena and climate extremes can be derived

    from climate models that represent possible future climate states. The third assessment

    report (TAR) of the IPCC has developed future climate change and extreme weather

    events in these models (IPCC 2001). Changes in the general warming and rainfall over

    the State of Jalisco indicated by atmosphere-ocean general circulation models show an

    increase of the greenhouse effect scenarios. There have been efforts agreed at a

    global/regional scale to also determine the nature of the changes in the extremes in other

    regions of the world, however, a clear picture of such changes with regional details has

    not been made to this region of Mexico. In this study, an attempt is made to face current

    changes and projections from models of climate change towards the end of the 21st

    century for the “Altos de Jalisco” region producing an evaluation of vulnerability to

    climate change in the region.

    Material and methods

    The data for average, maximum, and minimum temperatures for the period 1971-2000

    and 1981-2010 were obtained from the National Meteorological Service (SMN)

    belonging to the National Water Commission (CNA), attached to the Ministry of

    Environment and Natural Resources (SEMARNAT) of a network of 208 meteorological

    stations distributed in the State of Jalisco. In order to obtain this an assessment of the

    data quality was carried out as a prerequisite for the calculation of the indices, since any

    atypical and wrong value could have serious repercussions on the analysis of trends.

    Therefore, some basic procedures of data processing needed to be taken to examine the

    data of the individual stations, it allowed the identification of some extreme outliers and

    also helped in the identification of possible lack of homogeneity and lack of values in

    the data sets. Metadata files are configured for each station to identify doubtful values

    and track changes in the data sets. Any suspect daily temperature values were identified

    by the different quality controls; such as the maximum temperature below the minimum

    temperature, daily values greater than four times the standard deviation from the

    average for the time of year, and also the visual inspection of the historical series.

    Water-19, Paris, 22-24 July 2019 Pag. 26

  • Suspicious records are checked with various data sources, and the erroneous values are

    replaced by the correct values. The 48 stations used in the study were selected based on

    the quality of the data, the duration of data availability and homogeneity to comply with

    these requirements. (Aguilar et al., 2005;. Kothawale and Rupa Kumar 2005).

    Data from regional climate models

    The simulations using PRECIS have been performed to generate the last climate

    scenarios (1971-2000) and for future periods of 2020, 2050 and 2080 for two different

    socio-economic scenarios, both characterized by the focused regional development but

    with priority to economic issues in the first (scenario A2) and environmental issues in

    the second (scenario A1B). A detailed description of these scenarios is available in

    IPCC special report on emissions scenarios SRES, (2000). PRECIS is configured for a

    domain which extends from approximately -101° 28 °W to -105° 42 °W Wests

    longitude and 18° 55' °N to 22° 45' °N North latitude for 0.22° x 0.22° of horizontal

    resolution. A complete descriptio