Monitoring Hydrological Regime of the Euphrates-Tigris river Basin using Satellite Observations
Zakharova, E1; Kouraev, A2; Al-Yamani, F3; Polikarpov, I3; Cretaux, J-F4
1State Oceanography Institute; 2LEGOS/OMP, France, SOI, Russia; 3Mariculture and Fishery Dept., Kuwait Inst. for Scientific Research; 4LEGOS/OMP

Waters resources of the Euphrates-Tigris (ET) river basin are extensively used for irrigation and other types of water consumption, and a series of large reservoirs are constructed in each of the riparian countries. Information on hydrological regime of the ET basin has paramount importance for studies of natural and anthropogenic influence on the ET river system, and the freshwater input into the Arabian Gulf. During the last decades, discharge rates and water quality information, commonly obtained using in situ observations, have become very scarce and unavailable for the scientific community.

We analyse the hydrological regime of the ET basin using altimetry data from TOPEX/Poseidon (1992-2002), Geosat Follow-On (since January 2000) and ENVISAT (since November 2002) satellites. We also use satellite gravimetry observations from GRACE. We demonstrate application of these satellite techniques for studies of a) variability of water level for more than ten large reservoirs for Tigris and Euphrates, b) temporal variability of flooded areas in the ET marshes, and c) changes of river level and discharge of Shatt Al- Arab.


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