Hydrological Outlook UK; seasonal river flow forecasts using rainfall forecasts

Rudd, Ali; Bell, Vicky ORCID:; Davies, Helen; Scaife, Adam. 2016 Hydrological Outlook UK; seasonal river flow forecasts using rainfall forecasts. [Poster] In: British Hydrological Society Peter Wolf Symposium 2016, Bristol, 26-27 May 2016. (Unpublished)

Before downloading, please read NORA policies.

Download (2MB) | Preview


Hydrological predictions in the UK are strongly influenced by both rainfall and antecedent soil conditions. The Flood Forecasting Centre (FFC) and Scottish Flood Forecasting Service (SFFS) operationally issue flood alerts and warnings, however these typically apply only days to weeks ahead. There was a desire to produce a more long-term (seasonal) forecast of the water situation for flooding and drought periods similar to that produced in countries such as the USA and Australia. The Centre for Ecology & Hydrology (CEH) along with a number of partners have developed a long-range hydrological forecast for the UK. The Hydrological Outlook UK ( is the first operational forecast system for the UK that delivers monthly outlooks of the water situation for both river flow and groundwater levels. It brings together information on current and forecast weather conditions, soil moisture, river flows and groundwater levels, and uses a number of modelling approaches to explore possible future hydrological conditions. It is based on merging three complementary methods: (i) a statistical method based on river flow analogues and persistence, (ii) a Streamflow Ensemble Prediction System applied to selected catchments and boreholes; and (iii) a national hydrological forecast driven by an ensemble of 1 and 3 month-ahead rainfall forecasts from the UK Met Office’s GloSea5 model. Here we focus on the national scale hydrological forecasts, showing an example of the seasonal river flow forecasts and how they contribute to the Hydrological Outlooks UK monthly summary. The output from the different modelling methods and the summary are publicly available and used each month by government agencies, practitioners and academics alongside other sources of information such as flood warnings, meteorological forecasts and water situation reports.

Item Type: Publication - Conference Item (Poster)
UKCEH and CEH Sections/Science Areas: Reynard
NORA Subject Terms: Hydrology
Date made live: 05 Dec 2016 11:30 +0 (UTC)

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item

Document Downloads

Downloads for past 30 days

Downloads per month over past year

More statistics for this item...