Satellite data give unexpected insights into runoff and river discharge

The Hydrology Group of the Italian National Research Council has developed an innovative approach using satellite observations of terrestrial water storage, soil moisture and precipitation to predict runoff and river discharge – with the results published in the EGU Geoscientific Model Development journal.

This outcome of several ESA-funded activities, including StreamRidesat and the merged Streamride projects, shows intriguing findings on runoff trends over Europe in the last 20 years, somewhat in contrast to climate projections, where runoff is expected to decrease only over southern Europe. While these results need to be further validated and cross-checked, they open up interesting new activities for hydrological research in the near future.

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