Accumulated snow amounts are a key climate change indicator. It combines the competing effects of climate change driven changes in precipitation and stronger snowmelt related to increasing temperatures.
Here we provide observational evidence from a pan-European in-situ dataset that mean snow depth generally decreases stronger than extreme snow depth.
Widespread decreases in maximum and mean snow depth were found over Europe, except in the coldest climates, with an average decrease of
for mean snow depth and -11.4 decade for maximum snow depth since 1951. These trends accelerated after the 1980s. This has strong implications for the availability of freshwater in spring while extremes in snow depth, usually very disruptive to society, are
decreasing at a slower pace.
A Fontrodona Bach, G van der Schrier, LA Melsen, AMG Klein Tank, AJ Teuling. Widespread and accelerated decrease of observed mean and extreme snow depth over Europe
Status: published, Journal: Geophys. Res. Lett., Volume: 45, Year: 2018, doi: doi:10.1002/2018GL079799R