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Precipitation extremes in Europe

Indicator Specificationexpired Created 11 Jul 2008 Published 08 Sep 2008 Last modified 11 Sep 2015, 12:42 PM
Note: new version is available!
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This content has been archived on 13 Aug 2014, reason: Other (New version data-and-maps/indicators/precipitation-extremes-in-europe-2 was published)
Indicator codes: CLIM 004

Update planned for November 2012

Assessment versions

Published (reviewed and quality assured)
  • No published assessments


Justification for indicator selection

No rationale/justification has been specified

Scientific references

  • References IPCC, 2007a. Cimate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis. Contribution of Working Group I to the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Solomon, S.; Qin, D.; Manning, M.; Chen, Z.; Marquis, M.; Averyt, K. B.; Tignor M. and Miller H. L. (eds.), Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK. Klein Tank, A. M. G. and Können G. P., 2003. Trends in indices of daily temperature and precipitation extremes in Europe, 1946-1999. Journal of Climate 16: 3665-3680. Lloyd-Hughes, B. and Saunders, M. A., 2002. A drought climatology for Europe. International Journal of Climatology 22: 1571-1592. Robock, A.; Mu, M.; Vinnikov, K.; Trofimova, I. V. and Adamenko, T. I., 2005. Forty-five years of observed soil moisture in the Ukraine: No summer desiccation (yet). Geophysical Research Letters 32: 10.1029/2004GL021914. Sillmann, J. and Roeckner, E., 2008. Indices for extreme events in projections of anthropogenic climate change. Climatic Change 86 (1-2): 83-104. van der Schrier, G.; Briffa, K. R.; Jones, P. D. and Osborn, T. J., 2006. Summer moisture variability across Europe. Journal of Climate 19: 2818-2834. van Lannen, H. A. J.; Tallaksen, L. M.; Rees, G., 2007. Drought and climate change (In: Commission Staff Working Document Impact Assessment (SEC(2007)993, (COM(2007)414), Commission of the European Communities, Brussels, Belgium). Wade, S. D., 2007. Contribution to EU Medin SSA on drought, 2007 (unpublished).

Indicator definition

  • Changes in the contribution of heavy rainfall to total precipitation 1961-2006
  • Percentage of Europe experiencing moderate drought conditions during the 20th century
  • Simulated land average maximum 5-day total precipitation for different European regions (1860-2100)
  • Simulated land average maximum number of consecutive dry days for different European regions (1860-2100)


Policy context and targets

Context description

In April 2009 the European Commission presented a White Paper on the framework for adaptation policies and measures to reduce the European Union's vulnerability to the impacts of climate change. The aim is to increase the resilience to climate change of health, property and the productive functions of land, inter alia by improving the management of water resources and ecosystems. More knowledge is needed on climate impact and vulnerability but a considerable amount of information and research already exists which can be shared better through a proposed Clearing House Mechanism. The White Paper stresses the need to mainstream adaptation into existing and new EU policies. A number of Member States have already taken action and several have prepared national adaptation plans. The EU is also developing actions to enhance and finance adaptation in developing countries as part of a new post-2012 global climate agreement expected in Copenhagen (Dec. 2009). For more information see:


No targets have been specified

Related policy documents

No related policy documents have been specified

Key policy question



Methodology for indicator calculation

Methodology for gap filling

Methodology references

No methodology references available.

Data specifications

EEA data references

  • No datasets have been specified here.

External data references

Data sources in latest figures


Methodology uncertainty

Data sets uncertainty

Rationale uncertainty

No uncertainty has been specified

Further work

Short term work

Work specified here requires to be completed within 1 year from now.

Long term work

Work specified here will require more than 1 year (from now) to be completed.

General metadata

Responsibility and ownership

EEA Contact Info

Blaz Kurnik


European Environment Agency (EEA)


Indicator code
CLIM 004
Version id: 1
Primary theme: Climate change Climate change


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DPSIR: Impact
Typology: Descriptive indicator (Type A - What is happening to the environment and to humans?)
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