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Flooding in Switzerland Since 1850
Schmocker-Fackel, P. and Naef, F. 2010. More frequent flooding? Changes in flood frequency in Switzerland since 1850. Journal of Hydrology 381: 1-8.

Citing the IPCC (2008), the authors say it is expected that global warming will influence earth's precipitation regime, leading to "changes and trends in streamflow," which at one end of the spectrum of possible changes would be expected to lead to more frequent and severe floods, but which at the other end would be expected to lead to more frequent and severe droughts. In this regard, the world's climate alarmists like to have it both ways, as illustrated by the popular books of Al Gore (2006) and Michael Mann and Lee Kump (2008). And as their contribution to the extensive real-world testing that is needed to evaluate these claims, the two Swiss scientists thought it important to see how flooding in Switzerland may or may not have responded to the post-Little Ice Age warming of the past century and a half, especially in light of the extreme flooding that occurred in their country in 1999, 2005 and 2007.

What was done
Schmocker-Fackel and Naef, as they describe it, "analyzed streamflow data from 83 stations with a record length of up to 105 years, complemented with data from historical floods dating back to 1850."

What was learned
The two researchers report that "in Switzerland, periods with frequent floods have alternated with quieter periods during the last 150 years," and that "since 1900, flood-rich periods in northern Switzerland corresponded to quiet periods in southern Switzerland and vice versa." As for the fact that over the same period of time "three of the four largest large-scale flood events in northern Switzerland have all occurred within the last ten years," they report that "a similar accumulation of large floods has already been observed in the second half of the 19th century." In addition, they state that "studies about changes in precipitation frequencies in Switzerland come to similar conclusions," citing the work of Bader and Bantle (2004).

What it means
As is being found to be the case throughout all parts of the planet -- see Floods in our Subject Index -- Switzerland provides absolutely no support for the climate-alarmist contention that global warming leads to more frequent or severe floods. And one can pretty much put an exclamation point after that conclusion, in light of the fact that the warming investigated by Schmocker-Fackel and Naef is claimed by climate alarmists to have been unprecedented over the past one to two millennia.

Bader, S. and Bantle, H. 2004. Das schweizer klima im trend, Temperatur -- und Niederschlagsentwicklung 1864-2001. Veroffentlichung der MeteoSchweiz Nr. 68, 45 p.

Gore, A. 2006. An Inconvenient Truth. Roldale, Emmaus, Pennsylvania, USA, 327 p.

IPCC. 2008. Climate Change and Water. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. IPCC Technical Paper VI, 200 p.

Mann, M.E. and Kump, L.R. 2008. Dire Predictions: Understanding Global Warming. The Illustrated Guide to the Findings of the IPCC. DK Publishing Inc., New York, New York, USA, 208 p.

Reviewed 17 March 2010