Global warming will not only lead to water scarcity but also to excess water in certain regions: in the Alps, in the mountainous areas of Central Asia and in Europe's far north, in the Arctic and in outermost regions due to rapid melting of snow and ice. In coastal zones, deltas and floodplains disastrous impacts are predicted due to sea level rise, intense rainfall, floods and storms.
Extreme weather events such as heat waves and floods pose direct risk to the health and safety of people, especially to the young, the elderly, the disabled and low-income households. Damage to property and infrastructure imposes heavy costs on society and the economy. Sectors that rely strongly on certain temperatures and precipitation levels, such as agriculture, forestry, energy and tourism, will be particularly affected.
Excess water can appear as flood. Floods develop from heavy rainfall, they can be created by the overflow or inundation from rivers, lakes or the sea. When high streamflows overflow the natural or artificial banks of streams this has disastrous effects on riparians and their lands. Floods need to be controlled by banks, dykes or dams.