Jun 10, 2013

Catastrophic European floods raise climate concerns

Thuringia
Saxony
Bavaria
Saxony-Anhalt
Lower Saxony
Baden-Württemberg
Germany
by
Erica Rex
,
E&E
Flooding in Passau, Bavaria. Photo: Stefan Penninger
Flooding in Passau, Bavaria. Photo: Stefan Penninger

As the Danube River reaches record high levels and thousands flee Europe's worst flooding in more than a decade, scientists already are predicting that this deluge may be a portent of things to come...Although scientists hesitate to draw a direct relationship between weather and climate, observation of weather patterns shows a definite correlation between extreme weather events and a warming climate. "If we look at precipitation events over the long term, there is an increase in frequency of extremes. Events such as the one we're seeing now are occurring about twice as often as they did a century ago," said climate scientist Mojib Latif from the Helmholtz Center for Ocean Research in the German Baltic city of Kiel.