Hochwasser im Rheineinzugsgebiet: Ursachen und Konsequenzen

Translated title of the contribution: Floods in the Rhine catchment area: Causes and consequences

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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The paper analyses the hydrological regime of the Rhine catchment, the genesis of recent floods and recommends some research and practical activities aiming to mitigate flood damages. The catchment of the Rhine River can be divided into four main subcatchments: the alpine region with the Aare River as its main tributary and downstream the lower mountain regions of the tributaries Neckar, Main and Moselle. These four basins generate very different hydrographs. Due to the geographical conditions, the average discharge maximums shift from summer to winter downstream the Rhine. Moreover, the spatial and temporal precipitation patterns of each river have strong influence on the individual flood events. Some recent extraordinary floods are used to illustrate the parameters that have influenced these events. A strong relationship between recent climate change observations and the occurrence of flood levels cannot be proven. However, the consequences of human interventions and the resulting changes to the river system (the Rhine and its tributaries) for the hydrograph can be quantified quite precisely. The influences of different land-use and climatic scenarios on flood conditions in the Rhine basin have not yet been separately identified. Under such backdrop, the Dutch-German project LAHoR was established within the framework of the EU-project IRMA (INTERREG II C Rhine Maas Activities). The primary aim of this project is to give advice for the "Action Plan on Flood Defence" of the International Commission for the Protection of the Rhine (IKSR). In this plan a multidisciplinary approach to mitigating floods is suggested. It is anticipated that the plan may generate synergistic effects between flood prevention, water management, regional planning, agriculture, forestry and ecological demands.

Translated title of the contributionFloods in the Rhine catchment area: Causes and consequences
Original languageGerman
Pages (from-to)51-67
Number of pages17
JournalZeitschrift fur Geomorphologie, Supplementband
StatePublished - 2004
Externally publishedYes


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