Regional climate change and adaptation
Year of publication: 2009
The Alps facing the challenge of changing water resources
Spanning the centre of continental Europe, the Alps play a crucial role in accumulating and supplying water to the continent. As such, they deliver vital ecosystem services both within and beyond the region, underpinning social and economic wellbeing in vast lowland areas. Troublingly, the alpine climate has changed significantly during the past century, with temperatures increasing more than twice the global average. Drawing on the most recent knowledge of climate change impacts in the Alps and experiences across the region, this report analyses the risks that climate change presents to the region's water supply and quality, identifying needs, constraints, opportunities, policy levers and options for adaptation. It extracts policy guidance on adaptation practice and aims to assist regional and local stakeholders in developing robust adaptation strategies.