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      A Granger causality analysis of groundwater patterns over a half-century

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      Scientific Reports

      Nature Publishing Group UK

      Environmental impact, Hydrogeology, Hydrology

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          Abstract

          Groundwater depletion in many areas of the world has been broadly attributed to irrigation. However, more formal, data-driven, causal mechanisms of long-term groundwater patterns have not been assessed. Here, we conducted the first Granger causality analysis to identify the “causes” of groundwater patterns using the rice-producing parishes of Louisiana, USA, as an example. Trend analysis showed a decline of up to 6 m in groundwater level over 51 years. We found that no single cause explained groundwater patterns for all parishes. Causal linkages were noted between groundwater and area harvested, number of irrigation wells, summer precipitation totals, and drought. Bi-directional linkages were noted between groundwater and rice yield, suggesting feedback between both time series. Causal linkages were absent between groundwater and many drivers where significant correlations were noted, highlighting the importance of using robust causal relationships over illusive correlations to detect the cause. These results advance our understanding of groundwater dynamics and can reveal a key connection between food and groundwater.

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          Most cited references 30

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          Testing for a unit root in time series regression

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            Hydro-Climatological Trends in the Continental United States, 1948-88

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              Quantifying blue and green virtual water contents in global crop production as well as potential production losses without irrigation

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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                nksingh2@ncsu.edu
                Journal
                Sci Rep
                Sci Rep
                Scientific Reports
                Nature Publishing Group UK (London )
                2045-2322
                6 September 2019
                6 September 2019
                2019
                : 9
                Affiliations
                ISNI 0000 0000 9364 6281, GRID grid.260128.f, Geosciences and Geological and Petroleum Engineering, , Missouri University of Science and Technology, ; Rolla, MO 65409 USA
                Article
                49278
                10.1038/s41598-019-49278-8
                6731282
                31492959
                © The Author(s) 2019

                Open Access This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.

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                © The Author(s) 2019

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                environmental impact, hydrology, hydrogeology

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