Water in Switzerland – An Overview

Starting with the origin of Switzerland’s abundant water resources, the high amount of precipitation in the Alps, relevant hydrological, water management, social and environmental aspects of water are considered.

Water in Switzerland – An Overview

Since a large part of Switzerland’s
precipitation falls as snow, the storage of water in snow and
plays an important role in the seasonal distribution of
runoff, especially in high-altitude catchments. Hydropower,
and recreation depend on reliable runoff. Water therefore
has environmental, cultural and economic functions that may at
times conflict with one another. How this conflict is addressed will
determine the future
of energy in Switzerland. Presently, over half
of Switzerland’s electricity needs are met with hydropower. This
share is expected to increase as nuclear power is phased out of
the Swiss energy mix. As a result, ecosystems will come under
pressure in the future. Finally, climate change will also
have serious implications for the seasonal availability of water
that will affect humans and the environment alike.

Pages: 28
Standard identifier: 978-3-9524235-3-0


  • Impacts of climate change
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