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This approach facilitates comparison of probability-based flood series with climate and human impact proxy records, to better constrain the factors that control extreme events, and to inform present and future flood-risk assessment.

Here we present a reconstruction of Holocene flooding events based on the meta-analysis of more than 2000 C and OSL dated flood units from twelve regions in Europe and North Africa, selected on the basis of availability of high quality chronological data on extreme fluvial events (Fig. The dated fluvial deposits comprise slackwater and boulder berm flood sediments representing individual palaeoflood events, as well as flood units from alluvial floodplain and flood basin environments that record, in some instances, single large floods and changes in the discharge-sediment load over multi-decadal periods.

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Assessing the suitability of a method for the extraction and preservation of micro-organic pollutants in the field.

Millennial- and multi-centennial scale climate variability during the Holocene has been well documented, but its impact on the distribution and timing of extreme river floods has yet to be established.

Multi-centennial length phases of flooding in UK and central Europe correspond with periods of minimum solar irradiance, with a clear trend of increasing flood frequency over the last 1000 years.

Other regional correlations are: (i) UK with Germany, northeast Italy, and southern France; (ii) East European Plain with Germany, southern France and southern Italy; (iii) Tunisia with northeast Morocco and Iberian Peninsula; and (iv) eastern Mediterranean with East European Plain and Tunisia. There was also a marked decrease (almost no records) in major floods during the period 6500–5000 cal.

To assess climatic drivers of centennial and multi-centennial flood variability, the aggregate record has been divided into Mediterranean regions and northwest, central and eastern Europe (Fig. In the Mediterranean sector, the most widespread period of flooding occurred between 7500–7000 and at 2500–2000, with other minor phases centred at 4600, 3900, 3000, 1500, 900 and ca 300 cal. BP, followed by an increase in fluvial activity over the last 5000 years.

Although we cannot assume that these long-term record floods and flood patterns will be reproduced in the future, they do hold key knowledge to understand the effect of multi-decadal climate variability on extreme flooding at regional and global scales.

A major achievement in the last decade has been the development of meta-analysis for large databases of .

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