Extreme Events / Climate Change

Although often ignored, the effects of climate change impact the physical environment, the ecosystems and the human societies in Germany already today.
Extensive changes have been observed during the last 30 years. Model projections suggest that climate change is even going to accelerate in the future. Thus, the effects of climate change must be considered in all kinds of forward planning.

Climate induced changes in temperature and precipitation directly impact the water balance and can lead to major consequences for human well-being, ecosystems and the economy. To assess the effects of climate change on the water sector in Germany, there is an extensive summary within the ‘report on climate change ‘ issued by the German Federal States' Working Group on Water in the year 2020 (LAWA; report in German).  

Knowledge on the effects of climate change on the processes governing the water balance is constantly improving through scientific research. However, water resources planning must include uncertainties arising from climate model projections. To make sure that measures are suitable even in the future considering effects of climate change, they should be:

  • flexible and adaptable so that they can be adjusted afterwards
  • robust and efficient so that they function under a broad spectrum of climate effects and are ecologically, economically and socially worthwhile (measures of ‘no-regret’)
  • synergistic so that they apply for multiple objectives

Following those recommendations, a screening tool has been developed aiming to support the selection and rating of water resources measures in the context of climate change. Screening Tool (in German).



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 Floods; Low Water  drought  heavy rainfall