Policy Question
Indicator codes: CLIM 021

Key messages

(05 Jul 2010)

  • Several freshwater species have shifted their ranges to higher latitudes (northward movement) and altitudes in response to climate warming and other factors.
  • There are European examples of changes in life cycle events (phenology) such as earlier spring phytoplankton bloom, appearance of clear-water phase, first day of flight and spawning of fish.
  • In several European lakes, phytoplankton and zooplankton blooms are occurring one month earlier than 30-40 years ago.
  • Climate change can cause enhanced phytoplankton blooms, favouring and stabilizing the dominance of harmful cyanobacteria in phytoplankton communities, resulting in increased threats to the ecological status of lakes and enhanced health risks, particularly in water bodies used for public water supply and bathing. This may counteract nutrient load reduction measures.

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