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Pollution of inland streams, rivers and coastal waters may change. More intense precipitation in the future may lead to more pollutants being transported to water bodies.

How much sea level rise is to be expected at the upper limit of current IPCC scenarios? This question has been dealt with for northern Europe

Climate change could have major implications for the lowland blanket bog distribution along especially the western Atlantic seaboard where the projected losses are greatest.

Severe hurricane-force (> 32.6 m/s) storms can cause floods in west-European coastal regions and inflict large-scale damage on infrastructure and agriculture.

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I recommend

National plans/strategies for Ireland

  • Ireland’s Sixth National Communication under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) (2014). Download.
  • National Climate Change Strategy 2007-2012. Download.

Reports/papers that focus on important Irish topics

  • Fresh water resources: Environmental Protection Agency (2003). Climate Change: Scenarios and Impacts for Ireland. Download.
  • Storms: Wang et al. (2008). The impact of climate change on storm surges over Irish waters. Download.

Reports/papers that present a sound overview for Europe

  • Eisenreich (2005). Climate change and the European water dimension. A report to the European water directors.
  • European Environment Agency (2005). Vulnerability and adaptation to climate change in Europe. Download.
  • European Environment Agency, JRC and WHO (2008). Impact of Europe’s changing climate – 2008 indicator-based assessment. Download.

Reports/papers that focus on specific topics, relevant for all of Europe

  • Agriculture: Rounsevell et al. (2005). Future scenarios of European agricultural land use II. Projecting changes in cropland and grassland. Download.
  • Agriculture: Fischer et al. (2005). Socio-economic and climate change impacts on agriculture: an integrated assessment, 1990–2080. Download.
  • Biodiversity: Thuiller et al. (2005). Climate change threats to plant diversity in Europe. Download.
  • Coastal erosion: Salman et al. (2004). Living with coastal erosion in Europe: sediment and space for sustainability. Download.
  • Droughts: Blenkinsop and Fowler (2007). Changes in European drought characteristics projected by the PRUDENCE regional climate models. Download.
  • Droughts: European Environment Agency (2009). Water resources across Europe – confronting water scarcity and drought. Download.
  • Forestry: Seppälä et al. (2009). Adaptation of forests and people to climate change. A global assessment report. Download.
  • Health: Kosatsky (2005). The 2003 European heat waves. Download.
  • Health: WHO (2008). Protecting health in Europe from climate change. Download.
  • Insurance and Business: Mills et al. (2005). Availability and affordability of insurance under climate change. A growing challenge for the U.S. Download.
  • Security and Crisis management: German Advisory Council on Global Change (2007). World in transition: Climate change as a security risk. Summary for policy-makers. Download.
  • Storms: Gardiner et al. (2010). Destructive storms in European forests: Past and forthcoming impacts. Download.
  • Storms: Pinto et al. (2007). Changing European storm loss potentials under modified climate conditions according to ensemble simulations of the ECHAM5/MPI-OM1 GCM. Download.
  • Tourism: Deutsche Bank Research (2008). Climate change and tourism: Where will the journey lead? Download.

EU funded Research Projects

Agriculture

Aquifers

Biodiversity

Climate change scenarios

Coastal areas

Droughts and water scarcity

Energy

Floods

Fresh water resources

Mitigation / adaptation options and costs

Urban areas

Salt intrusion Ireland

Vulnerabilities

The effect of a sea level rise on estuaries will tend to enlarge their vertical and horizontal extent, resulting in the penetration of tides further upstream. The inland penetration of saltwater could also result in the contamination of low-lying coastal aquifers and other freshwater sources. Coastal aquifers, along with estuaries and wetlands, are also at risk due to saltwater intrusion (1).

Saltwater intrusion of groundwater will probably become more frequent during the summer under conditions of both reduced freshwater discharge and sea level rise. Salinisation of these aquifers is unlikely to extend more than 200 m further inland, and at present coastal aquifers are of little economic importance, reducing this impact of environmental change. But a continued expansion in coastal populations and industrial pressures on freshwater resources, as well as changing agricultural land uses at the coast, may create negative feedbacks to coastal resilience (2).

Salt water intrusion due to sea-level rise is mostly a very slow process that may take several centuries to reach equilibrium (3). Even small rates of groundwater pumping from coastal aquifers are expected to lead to stronger salinization of the groundwater than sea-level rise during the 21st century (4).

References

The references below are cited in full in a separate map 'References'. Please click here if you are looking for the full references for Ireland.

  1. Environmental Protection Agency (2003)
  2. Devoy (2008)
  3. Webb and Howard (2011), in: IPCC (2014)
  4. Ferguson and Gleeson (2012); Loaiciga et al. (2012), both in: IPCC (2014)
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