Impact of Climatic Changes on Snow Cover and Snow Hydrology in the French Alps

  • Eric Martin
  • Pierre Etchevers
Part of the Advances in Global Change Research book series (AGLO, volume 23)


A better understanding of the potential effects of climate change on snow cover is critical, considering the far-reaching environmental and socio-economic implications on water resources, winter tourism, ecology as well as local changes in climate. The snow coverage of the French Alps depends on weather conditions in a rather complex way. For a given winter, snow cover is the consequence of the various meteorological events encountered (frequency and intensity of snowfall events, atmospheric circulation patterns, cold and warm periods). Simple relationships between snow cover and averaged climate variables, such as mean temperature and precipitation, can therefore not adequately explain interannual variability of snow cover. Models can be used to gain a better understanding of the complex interactions between different climate variables and their effects on snow cover. In addition, models are of great interest for the assessment of potential climatic change impacts.


Climatic change French Alps Hydrology Snow cover 


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Copyright information

© Springer 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Eric Martin
    • 1
  • Pierre Etchevers
    • 1
  1. 1.Centre d’études de la neigeSt Martin d’Hères CEDEXFrance

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