5th UF Water Institute Symposium Abstract

Submitter's Name Jose Hernandez Ayala
Session Name Impacts of Climate Variability and Change on Water Availability and Quality
Author(s) Jose J  Hernandez Ayala,  University of Florida (Presenting Author)
  Spatial climatology of rainfall associated with tropical cyclones and their contribution to overall precipitation in Puerto Rico
  The island of Puerto Rico receives significant amount of rainfall associated with tropical cyclones (TC’s) in the months of June through November, however little is known about the spatial and temporal characteristics of this rain. This study aims two explore two different tropical cyclone rainfall (TCR) problems, first the identification of areas where heavy tropical cyclone rainfall (TCR) occurs and second their contribution to the precipitation climatology of Puerto Rico for the period 1970 to 2010. A total of 86 tropical cyclones within a 500 km radius of Puerto Rico were analyzed. Daily and monthly rainfall data from 32 weather stations with at least 80% of completed observations in the time period were used to produce interpolated surfaces in order to explore the spatial distribution and contribution of TCR. Two interpolation techniques were implemented, natural neighbor-ordinary kriging and ordinary cokriging. Results show that for the mean 86, land falling and top rainfall events the TCR tends to be cluster in the eastern, southeastern and central regions of the island with a decrease in values as we move west. A strong correlation with elevation was found in the southeast. The month with the largest contributions (>20%) for most of the stations was September followed by August and October while the months with the lowest contributions were June and July. For September the stations in the south and eastern portions of the island had TC rainfall percentages of more than 20% with a few stations in the southern coastal plains reaching 30%.