WorldWideScience

Sample records for climate change uncertainties

  1. Communicating Uncertainties on Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Planton, S.

    2009-09-01

    The term of uncertainty in common language is confusing since it is related in one of its most usual sense to what cannot be known in advance or what is subject to doubt. Its definition in mathematics is unambiguous but not widely shared. It is thus difficult to communicate on this notion through media to a wide public. From its scientific basis to the impact assessment, climate change issue is subject to a large number of sources of uncertainties. In this case, the definition of the term is close to its mathematical sense, but the diversity of disciplines involved in the analysis process implies a great diversity of approaches of the notion. Faced to this diversity of approaches, the issue of communicating uncertainties on climate change is thus a great challenge. It is also complicated by the diversity of the targets of the communication on climate change, from stakeholders and policy makers to a wide public. We will present the process chosen by the IPCC in order to communicate uncertainties in its assessment reports taking the example of the guidance note to lead authors of the fourth assessment report. Concerning the communication of uncertainties to a wide public, we will give some examples aiming at illustrating how to avoid the above-mentioned ambiguity when dealing with this kind of communication.

  2. Integrating uncertainties for climate change mitigation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rogelj, Joeri; McCollum, David; Reisinger, Andy; Meinshausen, Malte; Riahi, Keywan

    2013-04-01

    The target of keeping global average temperature increase to below 2°C has emerged in the international climate debate more than a decade ago. In response, the scientific community has tried to estimate the costs of reaching such a target through modelling and scenario analysis. Producing such estimates remains a challenge, particularly because of relatively well-known, but ill-quantified uncertainties, and owing to limited integration of scientific knowledge across disciplines. The integrated assessment community, on one side, has extensively assessed the influence of technological and socio-economic uncertainties on low-carbon scenarios and associated costs. The climate modelling community, on the other side, has worked on achieving an increasingly better understanding of the geophysical response of the Earth system to emissions of greenhouse gases (GHG). This geophysical response remains a key uncertainty for the cost of mitigation scenarios but has only been integrated with assessments of other uncertainties in a rudimentary manner, i.e., for equilibrium conditions. To bridge this gap between the two research communities, we generate distributions of the costs associated with limiting transient global temperature increase to below specific temperature limits, taking into account uncertainties in multiple dimensions: geophysical, technological, social and political. In other words, uncertainties resulting from our incomplete knowledge about how the climate system precisely reacts to GHG emissions (geophysical uncertainties), about how society will develop (social uncertainties and choices), which technologies will be available (technological uncertainty and choices), when we choose to start acting globally on climate change (political choices), and how much money we are or are not willing to spend to achieve climate change mitigation. We find that political choices that delay mitigation have the largest effect on the cost-risk distribution, followed by

  3. An Ontology for Uncertainty in Climate Change Projections

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, A. W.

    2011-12-01

    Paraphrasing Albert Einstein's aphorism about scientific quantification: not all uncertainty that counts can be counted, and not all uncertainty that can be counted counts. The meaning of the term "uncertainty" in climate change science and assessment is itself uncertain. Different disciplines and perspectives bring different nuances if not meanings of the term to the conversation. For many scientists, uncertainty is somehow associated with statistical dispersion and standard error. For many users of climate change information, uncertainty is more related to their confidence, or lack thereof, in climate models. These "uncertainties" may be related, but they are not identical, and there is considerable room for confusion and misunderstanding. A knowledge framework, a system of concepts and vocabulary, for communicating uncertainty can add structure to the characterization and quantification of uncertainty and aid communication among scientists and users. I have developed an ontology for uncertainty in climate change projections derived largely from the report of the W3C Uncertainty Reasoning for the World Wide Web Incubator Group (URW3-XG) dealing with the problem of uncertainty representation and reasoning on the World Wide Web. I have adapted this ontology for uncertainty about information to uncertainty about climate change. Elements of the ontology apply with little or no translation to the information of climate change projections, with climate change almost a use case. Other elements can be translated into language used in climate-change discussions; translating aleatory uncertainty in the UncertaintyNature class as irreducible uncertainty is an example. I have added classes for source of uncertainty (UncertaintySource) (different model physics, for example) and metrics of uncertainty (UncertaintyMetric), at least, in the case of the latter, for those instances of uncertainty that can be quantified (i.e., counted). The statistical standard deviation isa member

  4. Uncertainty in simulating wheat yields under climate change : Letter

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Asseng, S.; Ewert, F.; Rosenzweig, C.; Jones, J.W.; Supit, I.

    2013-01-01

    Projections of climate change impacts on crop yields are inherently uncertain1. Uncertainty is often quantified when projecting future greenhouse gas emissions and their influence on climate2. However, multi-model uncertainty analysis of crop responses to climate change is rare because systematic an

  5. Characterizing Uncertainty for Regional Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation Decisions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Unwin, Stephen D.; Moss, Richard H.; Rice, Jennie S.; Scott, Michael J.

    2011-09-30

    This white paper describes the results of new research to develop an uncertainty characterization process to help address the challenges of regional climate change mitigation and adaptation decisions.

  6. A framework for modeling uncertainty in regional climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    In this study, we present a new modeling framework and a large ensemble of climate projections to investigate the uncertainty in regional climate change over the United States associated with four dimensions of uncertainty. The sources of uncertainty considered in this framework ...

  7. Uncertainty assessment tool for climate change impact indicators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Otto, Juliane; Keup-Thiel, Elke; Jacob, Daniela; Rechid, Diana; Lückenkötter, Johannes; Juckes, Martin

    2015-04-01

    A major difficulty in the study of climate change impact indicators is dealing with the numerous sources of uncertainties of climate and non-climate data . Its assessment, however, is needed to communicate to users the degree of certainty of climate change impact indicators. This communication of uncertainty is an important component of the FP7 project "Climate Information Portal for Copernicus" (CLIPC). CLIPC is developing a portal to provide a central point of access for authoritative scientific information on climate change. In this project the Climate Service Center 2.0 is in charge of the development of a tool to assess the uncertainty of climate change impact indicators. The calculation of climate change impact indicators will include climate data from satellite and in-situ observations, climate models and re-analyses, and non-climate data. There is a lack of a systematic classification of uncertainties arising from the whole range of climate change impact indicators. We develop a framework that intends to clarify the potential sources of uncertainty of a given indicator and provides - if possible - solutions how to quantify the uncertainties. To structure the sources of uncertainties of climate change impact indicators, we first classify uncertainties along a 'cascade of uncertainty' (Reyer 2013). Our cascade consists of three levels which correspond to the CLIPC meta-classification of impact indicators: Tier-1 indicators are intended to give information on the climate system. Tier-2 indicators attempt to quantify the impacts of climate change on biophysical systems (i.e. flood risks). Tier-3 indicators primarily aim at providing information on the socio-economic systems affected by climate change. At each level, the potential sources of uncertainty of the input data sets and its processing will be discussed. Reference: Reyer, C. (2013): The cascade of uncertainty in modeling forest ecosystem responses to environmental change and the challenge of sustainable

  8. Uncertainty in Simulating Wheat Yields Under Climate Change

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Asseng, S.; Ewert, F.; Rosenzweig, C.; Jones, J.W.; Hatfield, Jerry; Ruane, Alex; Boote, K. J.; Thorburn, Peter; Rotter, R.P.; Cammarano, D.; Brisson, N.; Basso, B.; Martre, P.; Aggarwal, P.K.; Angulo, C.; Bertuzzi, P.; Biernath, C.; Challinor, AJ; Doltra, J.; Gayler, S.; Goldberg, R.; Grant, Robert; Heng, L.; Hooker, J.; Hunt, L.A.; Ingwersen, J.; Izaurralde, Roberto C.; Kersebaum, K.C.; Mueller, C.; Naresh Kumar, S.; Nendel, C.; O' Leary, G.O.; Olesen, JE; Osborne, T.; Palosuo, T.; Priesack, E.; Ripoche, D.; Semenov, M.A.; Shcherbak, I.; Steduto, P.; Stockle, Claudio O.; Stratonovitch, P.; Streck, T.; Supit, I.; Tao, F.; Travasso, M.; Waha, K.; Wallach, D.; White, J.W.; Williams, J.R.; Wolf, J.

    2013-09-01

    Anticipating the impacts of climate change on crop yields is critical for assessing future food security. Process-based crop simulation models are the most commonly used tools in such assessments1,2. Analysis of uncertainties in future greenhouse gas emissions and their impacts on future climate change has been increasingly described in the literature3,4 while assessments of the uncertainty in crop responses to climate change are very rare. Systematic and objective comparisons across impact studies is difficult, and thus has not been fully realized5. Here we present the largest coordinated and standardized crop model intercomparison for climate change impacts on wheat production to date. We found that several individual crop models are able to reproduce measured grain yields under current diverse environments, particularly if sufficient details are provided to execute them. However, simulated climate change impacts can vary across models due to differences in model structures and algorithms. The crop-model component of uncertainty in climate change impact assessments was considerably larger than the climate-model component from Global Climate Models (GCMs). Model responses to high temperatures and temperature-by-CO2 interactions are identified as major sources of simulated impact uncertainties. Significant reductions in impact uncertainties through model improvements in these areas and improved quantification of uncertainty through multi-model ensembles are urgently needed for a more reliable translation of climate change scenarios into agricultural impacts in order to develop adaptation strategies and aid policymaking.

  9. Deep and shallow uncertainty in messaging climate change

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cooke, R.M.

    2013-01-01

    Deep and shallow uncertainty are defined and contrasted with regard to messaging the uncertainty about climate change. Deep uncertainty is often traced back to the writings of Frank Knight, where in fact it simply meant subjective probability. Although Knight envisioned a scientifically grounded qua

  10. A framework for modeling uncertainty in regional climate change (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monier, E.; Gao, X.; Scott, J. R.; Sokolov, A. P.; Schlosser, C. A.

    2013-12-01

    In this study, we present a new modeling framework and a large ensemble of climate projections to investigate the uncertainty in regional climate change over the United States associated with four dimensions of uncertainty. The sources of uncertainty considered in this framework are the emissions projections (using different climate policies), the climate system response (represented by different values of climate sensitivity and net aerosol forcing), natural variability (by perturbing initial conditions) and structural uncertainty (using different climate models). The modeling framework revolves around the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Integrated Global System Model (IGSM), an integrated assessment model with an intermediate complexity earth system model (with a two-dimensional zonal-mean atmosphere). Regional climate change over the United States is obtained through a two-pronged approach. First, we use the IGSM-CAM framework which links the IGSM to the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) Community Atmosphere Model (CAM). Secondly, we use a pattern-scaling method that extends the IGSM zonal mean based on climate change patterns from various climate models. Results show that uncertainty in temperature changes are mainly driven by policy choices and the range of climate sensitivity considered. Meanwhile, the four sources of uncertainty contribute more equally to precipitation changes, with natural variability having a large impact in the first part of the 21st century. Overall, the choice of policy is the largest driver of uncertainty in future projections of climate change over the United States. In light of these results, we recommend that when investigating climate change impacts over specific regions, studies consider all four sources of uncertainty analyzed in this paper.

  11. Uncertainties in extreme precipitation under climate change conditions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sunyer Pinya, Maria Antonia

    The latest report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) states that it is unequivocal that climate change is occurring. One of the largest impacts of climate change is anticipated to be an increase in the severity of extreme events, such as extreme precipitation. Floods caused...... by extreme precipitation pose a threat to human life and cause high economic losses for society. Thus, strategies to adapt to changes in extreme precipitation are currently being developed and established worldwide. Information on the expected changes in extreme precipitation is required for the development...... of adaptation strategies, but these changes are subject to uncertainties. The focus of this PhD thesis is the quantification of uncertainties in changes in extreme precipitation. It addresses two of the main sources of uncertainty in climate change impact studies: regional climate models (RCMs) and statistical...

  12. Uncertainty in simulating wheat yields under climate change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Asseng, A; Ewert, F; Rosenzweig, C;

    2013-01-01

    Projections of climate change impacts on crop yields are inherently uncertain1. Uncertainty is often quantified when projecting future greenhouse gas emissions and their influence on climate2. However, multi-model uncertainty analysis of crop responses to climate change is rare because systematic...... and objective comparisons among process-based crop simulation models1, 3 are difficult4. Here we present the largest standardized model intercomparison for climate change impacts so far. We found that individual crop models are able to simulate measured wheat grain yields accurately under a range...... of environments, particularly if the input information is sufficient. However, simulated climate change impacts vary across models owing to differences in model structures and parameter values. A greater proportion of the uncertainty in climate change impact projections was due to variations among crop models...

  13. Climate change and global crop yield: impacts, uncertainties and adaptation

    OpenAIRE

    Deryng, Delphine

    2014-01-01

    As global mean temperature continues to rise steadily, agricultural systems are projected to face unprecedented challenges to cope with climate change. However, understanding of climate change impacts on global crop yield, and of farmers’ adaptive capacity, remains incomplete as previous global assessments: (1) inadequately evaluated the role of extreme weather events; (2) focused on a small subset of the full range of climate change predictions; (3) overlooked uncertainties related to the ch...

  14. Uncertainties in projecting climate-change impacts in marine ecosystems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Payne, Mark; Barange, Manuel; Cheung, William W. L.;

    2016-01-01

    Projections of the impacts of climate change on marine ecosystems are a key prerequisite for the planning of adaptation strategies, yet they are inevitably associated with uncertainty. Identifying, quantifying, and communicating this uncertainty is key to both evaluating the risk associated...... with a projection and building confidence in its robustness. We review how uncertainties in such projections are handled in marine science. We employ an approach developed in climate modelling by breaking uncertainty down into (i) structural (model) uncertainty, (ii) initialization and internal variability...... uncertainty is rarely treated explicitly and reducing this type of uncertainty may deliver gains on the seasonal-to-decadal time-scale.Weconclude that all parts of marine science could benefit from a greater exchange of ideas, particularly concerning such a universal problem such as the treatment...

  15. Avoiding climate change uncertainties in Strategic Environmental Assessment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larsen, Sanne Vammen; Kørnøv, Lone; Driscoll, Patrick Arthur

    2013-01-01

    This article is concerned with how Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) practice handles climate change uncertainties within the Danish planning system. First, a hypothetical model is set up for how uncertainty is handled and not handled in decision-making. The model incorporates the strategies...

  16. Sources of Uncertainty in Climate Change Projections of Precipitation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gutmann, Ethan; Clark, Martyn; Eidhammer, Trude; Ikeda, Kyoko; Deser, Clara; Brekke, Levi; Arnold, Jeffrey; Rasmussen, Roy

    2016-04-01

    Predicting the likely changes in precipitation due to anthropogenic climate influences is one of the most important problems in earth science today. This problem is complicated by the enormous uncertainty in current predictions. Until all such sources of uncertainty are adequately addressed and quantified, we can not know what changes may be predictable, and which masked by the internal variability of the climate system itself. Here we assess multiple sources of uncertainty including those due to internal variability, climate model selection, emissions scenario, regional climate model physics, and statistical downscaling methods. This work focuses on the Colorado Rocky Mountains because these mountains serve as the water towers for much of the western United States, but the results are more broadly applicable, and results will be presented covering the Columbia River Basin and the California Sierra Nevadas as well. Internal variability is assessed using 30 members of the CESM Large Ensemble. Uncertainty due to the choice of climate models is assessed using 100 climate projections from the CMIP5 archive, including multiple emissions scenarios. Uncertainty due to regional climate model physics is assessed using a limited set of high-resolution Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model simulations in comparison to a larger multi-physics ensemble using the Intermediate Complexity Atmospheric Research (ICAR) model. Finally, statistical downscaling uncertainty is assessed using multiple statistical downscaling models. In near-term projections (25-35 years) internal variability is the largest source of uncertainty; however, over longer time scales (70-80 years) other sources of uncertainty become more important, with the importance of different sources of uncertainty varying depending on the metric assessed.

  17. Uncertainty propagation within an integrated model of climate change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This paper demonstrates a methodology whereby stochastic dynamical systems are used to investigate a climate model's inherent capacity to propagate uncertainty over time. The usefulness of the methodology stems from its ability to identify the variables that account for most of the model's uncertainty. We accomplish this by reformulating a deterministic dynamical system capturing the structure of an integrated climate model into a stochastic dynamical system. Then, via the use of computational techniques of stochastic differential equations accurate uncertainty estimates of the model's variables are determined. The uncertainty is measured in terms of properties of probability distributions of the state variables. The starting characteristics of the uncertainty of the initial state and the random fluctuations are derived from estimates given in the literature. Two aspects of uncertainty are investigated: (1) the dependence on environmental scenario - which is determined by technological development and actions towards environmental protection; and (2) the dependence on the magnitude of the initial state measurement error determined by the progress of climate change and the total magnitude of the system's random fluctuations as well as by our understanding of the climate system. Uncertainty of most of the system's variables is found to be nearly independent of the environmental scenario for the time period under consideration (1990-2100). Even conservative uncertainty estimates result in scenario overlap of several decades during which the consequences of any actions affecting the environment could be very difficult to identify with a sufficient degree of confidence. This fact may have fundamental consequences on the level of social acceptance of any restrictive measures against accelerating global warming. In general, the stochastic fluctuations contribute more to the uncertainty than the initial state measurements. The variables coupling all major climate elements

  18. Communicating uncertainty: lessons learned and suggestions for climate change assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Assessments of climate change face the task of making information about uncertainty accessible and useful to decision-makers. The literature in behavior economics provides many examples of how people make decisions under conditions of uncertainty relying on inappropriate heuristics, leading to inconsistent and counterproductive choices. Modern risk communication practices recommend a number of methods to overcome these hurdles, which have been recommended for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) assessment reports. This paper evaluates the success of the most recent IPCC approach to uncertainty communication, based on a controlled survey of climate change experts. Evaluating the results from the survey, and from a similar survey recently conducted among university students, the paper suggests that the most recent IPCC approach leaves open the possibility for biased and inconsistent responses to the information. The paper concludes by suggesting ways to improve the approach for future IPCC assessment reports. (authors)

  19. Uncertainties in Agricultural Impact Assessments of Climate Change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Montesino San Martin, Manuel

    Future food security will be challenged by the likely increase in demand, changes in consumption patterns and the effects of climate change. Framing food availability requires adequate agricultural production planning. Decision-making can benefit from improved understanding of the uncertainties...

  20. Spatial precision vs large scale uncertainties in climate change scenario

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dubrovsky, M.; Potuznikova, K.

    2009-04-01

    In assessing climate change impacts on various weather dependent processes, weather series representing changed climate are required as an input to the impact models (for example crop growth models). In producing these series, the weather generator (WG) is often employed: WG parameters are derived from the observed series and then modified using the climate change scenario, which defines changes in the relevant climatic characteristics. These scenarios use to be derived either from GCM or RCM simulations. An advantage of using RCMs (with respect to using GCMs) consists in higher spatial resolution of simulated processes and thereby in higher spatial precision of RCM-based climate change scenario. On the other hand, advantage of using GCM-based scenarios consists in larger number of available GCM simulations, which allows to better account for the uncertainty in larger-scale patterns of climate change. This contribution aims to contribute to the discussion on the usefulness of RCMs in developing the climate change scenarios. To show the significancy of high resolution RCM based spatial signal in changes in relevant climatic characteristics, this signal will be compared with the uncertainty in GCM-simulated larger scale patterns of change. The former RCM-based signal will be derived from the RCM simulations made for the PRUDENCE project, the latter GCM based uncertainty will be based on simulations from a larger number of GCMs. The results will be shown in terms of maps for a whole Europe. Acknowledgements: The study is supported by 6th FP EU research project CECILIA (no GOCE 037005) and GAAV grant agency (project IAA300420806 - "PRASCE").

  1. Uncertainty in projected impacts of climate change on biodiversity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Garcia, Raquel A.

    are difficult to model. The effect of such bias against narrow-ranging species is often overlooked in assessments of biodiversity impacts, but our results for sub-Saharan African amphibians show that it trickles down to conservation strategies. Finally, assumptions about the climatic tolerance of species......, their dispersal ability, and other characteristics are also shown to alter model projections for sub-Saharan African amphibians. Despite numerous calls to address the uncertainty challenge, appropriate treatment of uncertainty has yet to be formalised in assessments of biodiversity impacts under climate change...... information about the variability of projections in the ensemble. The second example examines model outputs for sub-Saharan African amphibians in the light of species' vulnerability to climate change. An analytical framework is developed for distinguishing between different climatic threats and opportunities...

  2. One Strategy for Reducing Uncertainty in Climate Change Communications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Romm, J.

    2011-12-01

    Future impacts of climate change are invariably presented with a very wide range of impacts reflecting two different sets of uncertainties. The first concerns our uncertainty about precisely how much greenhouse gas emissions humanity will emit into the atmosphere. The second concerns our uncertainty about precisely what impact those emissions will have on the climate. By failing to distinguish between these two types of uncertainties, climate scientists have not clearly explained to the public and policymakers what the scientific literature suggests is likely to happen if we don't substantially alter our current emissions path. Indeed, much of climate communications has been built around describing the range of impacts from emissions paths that are increasingly implausible given political and technological constraints, such as a stabilization at 450 or 550 parts per million atmospheric of carbon dioxide. For the past decade, human emissions of greenhouse gases have trended near the worst-case scenarios of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, emissions paths that reach 800 ppm or even 1000 ppm. The current policies of the two biggest emitters, the United States and China, coupled with the ongoing failure of international negotiations to come to an agreement on restricting emissions, suggests that recent trends will continue for the foreseeable future. This in turn suggests that greater clarity in climate change communications could be achieved by more clearly explaining to the public what the scientific literature suggests the range of impacts are for our current high emissions path. This also suggests that more focus should be given in the scientific literature to better constraining the range of impacts from the high emissions scenarios.

  3. Anthropogenic climate change: Scientific uncertainties and moral dilemmas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hillerbrand, Rafaela; Ghil, Michael

    2008-08-01

    This paper considers the role of scientific expertise and moral reasoning in the decision making process involved in climate-change issues. It points to an unresolved moral dilemma that lies at the heart of this decision making, namely how to balance duties towards future generations against duties towards our contemporaries. At present, the prevailing moral and political discourses shy away from addressing this dilemma and evade responsibility by falsely drawing normative conclusions from the predictions of climate models alone. We argue that such moral dilemmas are best addressed in the framework of Expected Utility Theory. A crucial issue is to adequately incorporate into this framework the uncertainties associated with the predicted consequences of climate change on the well-being of future generations. The uncertainties that need to be considered include those usually associated with climate modeling and prediction, but also moral and general epistemic ones. This paper suggests a way to correctly incorporate all the relevant uncertainties into the decision making process.

  4. Model and parameter uncertainty in IDF relationships under climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chandra, Rupa; Saha, Ujjwal; Mujumdar, P. P.

    2015-05-01

    Quantifying distributional behavior of extreme events is crucial in hydrologic designs. Intensity Duration Frequency (IDF) relationships are used extensively in engineering especially in urban hydrology, to obtain return level of extreme rainfall event for a specified return period and duration. Major sources of uncertainty in the IDF relationships are due to insufficient quantity and quality of data leading to parameter uncertainty due to the distribution fitted to the data and uncertainty as a result of using multiple GCMs. It is important to study these uncertainties and propagate them to future for accurate assessment of return levels for future. The objective of this study is to quantify the uncertainties arising from parameters of the distribution fitted to data and the multiple GCM models using Bayesian approach. Posterior distribution of parameters is obtained from Bayes rule and the parameters are transformed to obtain return levels for a specified return period. Markov Chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) method using Metropolis Hastings algorithm is used to obtain the posterior distribution of parameters. Twenty six CMIP5 GCMs along with four RCP scenarios are considered for studying the effects of climate change and to obtain projected IDF relationships for the case study of Bangalore city in India. GCM uncertainty due to the use of multiple GCMs is treated using Reliability Ensemble Averaging (REA) technique along with the parameter uncertainty. Scale invariance theory is employed for obtaining short duration return levels from daily data. It is observed that the uncertainty in short duration rainfall return levels is high when compared to the longer durations. Further it is observed that parameter uncertainty is large compared to the model uncertainty.

  5. Weather uncertainty versus climate change uncertainty in a short television weather broadcast

    Science.gov (United States)

    Witte, J.; Ward, B.; Maibach, E.

    2011-12-01

    For TV meteorologists talking about uncertainty in a two-minute forecast can be a real challenge. It can quickly open the way to viewer confusion. TV meteorologists understand the uncertainties of short term weather models and have different methods to convey the degrees of confidence to the viewing public. Visual examples are seen in the 7-day forecasts and the hurricane track forecasts. But does the public really understand a 60 percent chance of rain or the hurricane cone? Communication of climate model uncertainty is even more daunting. The viewing public can quickly switch to denial of solid science. A short review of the latest national survey of TV meteorologists by George Mason University and lessons learned from a series of climate change workshops with TV broadcasters provide valuable insights into effectively using visualizations and invoking multimedia-learning theories in weather forecasts to improve public understanding of climate change.

  6. Climate change impacts on extreme events in the United States: an uncertainty analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Extreme weather and climate events, such as heat waves, droughts and severe precipitation events, have substantial impacts on ecosystems and the economy. However, future climate simulations display large uncertainty in mean changes. As a result, the uncertainty in future changes ...

  7. Modelling pesticide leaching under climate change: parameter vs. climate input uncertainty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. Steffens

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available The assessment of climate change impacts on the risk for pesticide leaching needs careful consideration of different sources of uncertainty. We investigated the uncertainty related to climate scenario input and its importance relative to parameter uncertainty of the pesticide leaching model. The pesticide fate model MACRO was calibrated against a comprehensive one-year field data set for a well-structured clay soil in south-west Sweden. We obtained an ensemble of 56 acceptable parameter sets that represented the parameter uncertainty. Nine different climate model projections of the regional climate model RCA3 were available as driven by different combinations of global climate models (GCM, greenhouse gas emission scenarios and initial states of the GCM. The future time series of weather data used to drive the MACRO-model were generated by scaling a reference climate data set (1970–1999 for an important agricultural production area in south-west Sweden based on monthly change factors for 2070–2099. 30 yr simulations were performed for different combinations of pesticide properties and application seasons. Our analysis showed that both the magnitude and the direction of predicted change in pesticide leaching from present to future depended strongly on the particular climate scenario. The effect of parameter uncertainty was of major importance for simulating absolute pesticide losses, whereas the climate uncertainty was relatively more important for predictions of changes of pesticide losses from present to future. The climate uncertainty should be accounted for by applying an ensemble of different climate scenarios. The aggregated ensemble prediction based on both acceptable parameterizations and different climate scenarios could provide robust probabilistic estimates of future pesticide losses and assessments of changes in pesticide leaching risks.

  8. Modelling pesticide leaching under climate change: parameter vs. climate input uncertainty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. Steffens

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Assessing climate change impacts on pesticide leaching requires careful consideration of different sources of uncertainty. We investigated the uncertainty related to climate scenario input and its importance relative to parameter uncertainty of the pesticide leaching model. The pesticide fate model MACRO was calibrated against a comprehensive one-year field data set for a well-structured clay soil in south-western Sweden. We obtained an ensemble of 56 acceptable parameter sets that represented the parameter uncertainty. Nine different climate model projections of the regional climate model RCA3 were available as driven by different combinations of global climate models (GCM, greenhouse gas emission scenarios and initial states of the GCM. The future time series of weather data used to drive the MACRO model were generated by scaling a reference climate data set (1970–1999 for an important agricultural production area in south-western Sweden based on monthly change factors for 2070–2099. 30 yr simulations were performed for different combinations of pesticide properties and application seasons. Our analysis showed that both the magnitude and the direction of predicted change in pesticide leaching from present to future depended strongly on the particular climate scenario. The effect of parameter uncertainty was of major importance for simulating absolute pesticide losses, whereas the climate uncertainty was relatively more important for predictions of changes of pesticide losses from present to future. The climate uncertainty should be accounted for by applying an ensemble of different climate scenarios. The aggregated ensemble prediction based on both acceptable parameterizations and different climate scenarios has the potential to provide robust probabilistic estimates of future pesticide losses.

  9. Incorporating climate-system and carbon-cycle uncertainties in integrated assessments of climate change. (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rogelj, J.; McCollum, D. L.; Reisinger, A.; Knutti, R.; Riahi, K.; Meinshausen, M.

    2013-12-01

    The field of integrated assessment draws from a large body of knowledge across a range of disciplines to gain robust insights about possible interactions, trade-offs, and synergies. Integrated assessment of climate change, for example, uses knowledge from the fields of energy system science, economics, geophysics, demography, climate change impacts, and many others. Each of these fields comes with its associated caveats and uncertainties, which should be taken into account when assessing any results. The geophysical system and its associated uncertainties are often represented by models of reduced complexity in integrated assessment modelling frameworks. Such models include simple representations of the carbon-cycle and climate system, and are often based on the global energy balance equation. A prominent example of such model is the 'Model for the Assessment of Greenhouse Gas Induced Climate Change', MAGICC. Here we show how a model like MAGICC can be used for the representation of geophysical uncertainties. Its strengths, weaknesses, and limitations are discussed and illustrated by means of an analysis which attempts to integrate socio-economic and geophysical uncertainties. These uncertainties in the geophysical response of the Earth system to greenhouse gases remains key for estimating the cost of greenhouse gas emission mitigation scenarios. We look at uncertainties in four dimensions: geophysical, technological, social and political. Our results indicate that while geophysical uncertainties are an important factor influencing projections of mitigation costs, political choices that delay mitigation by one or two decades a much more pronounced effect.

  10. The role of uncertainty in climate change adaptation strategies — A Danish water management example

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Refsgaard, J.C.; Arnbjerg-Nielsen, Karsten; Drews, Martin;

    2013-01-01

    be used to address concerns that the IPCC approach is oversimplified. We have studied the role of uncertainty in climate change adaptation planning using examples from four Danish water related sectors. The dominating sources of uncertainty differ greatly among issues; most uncertainties on impacts......We propose a generic framework to characterize climate change adaptation uncertainty according to three dimensions: level, source and nature. Our framework is different, and in this respect more comprehensive, than the present UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) approach and could...... are epistemic (reducible) by nature but uncertainties on adaptation measures are complex, with ambiguity often being added to impact uncertainties. Strategies to deal with uncertainty in climate change adaptation should reflect the nature of the uncertainty sources and how they interact with risk level...

  11. Biophysical and Economic Uncertainty in the Analysis of Poverty Impacts of Climate Change

    OpenAIRE

    Hertel, Thomas W.; Lobell, David; Verma, Monika

    2011-01-01

    This paper seeks to understand the main sources of uncertainty in assessing the impacts of climate change on agricultural output, international trade, and poverty. We incorporate biophysical uncertainty by sampling from a distribution of productivity shocks reflecting the impacts of climate on agricultural yields in 2030. These shocks, in turn, affect the global economy. The response of economic agents to climate change is the second source of uncertainty in our estimates. We find that, even ...

  12. Climate change, uncertainty and investment in flood risk reduction

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pol, van der T.D.

    2015-01-01

    Economic analysis of flood risk management strategies has become more complex due to climate change. This thesis investigates the impact of climate change on investment in flood risk reduction, and applies optimisation methods to support identification of optimal flood risk management strategies. Ch

  13. Climate change and uncertainty avoidance in spatial planning: Illuminated through environmental assessment of spatial plans

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larsen, Sanne Vammen; Kørnøv, Lone

    concerns the handling and non- handling of climate change uncertainties in spatial planning - by using the explicit consideration of uncertainty within the mandatory Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) of spatial plans as an indicator. This paper suggests that uncertainty it not handled very well......Uncertainty is an unavoidable part of spatial planning and related predictions, e.g. of environmental impacts of plan implementation. The uncertainty premise embedded in planning is highly relevant and critical for climate change. But how well is uncertainty handled in planning practice? This paper...

  14. Health risks of climate change: An assessment of uncertainties and its implications for adaption policies

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wardekker, J.A.; de Jong, A.; van Bree, L.; Turkenburg, W.C.; van der Sluijs, J.P.

    2012-01-01

    Background: Projections of health risks of climate change are surrounded with uncertainties in knowledge. Understanding of these uncertainties will help the selection of appropriate adaptation policies. Methods: We made an inventory of conceivable health impacts of climate change, explored the type

  15. Uncertainty Management in Urban Water Engineering Adaptation to Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Current water resource planning and engineering assume a stationary climate, in which the observed historical water flow rate and water quality variations are often used to define the technical basis. When the non-stationarity is considered, however, climate change projection co...

  16. Uncertainty of climate change impacts and consequences on the prediction of future hydrological trends

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    In the future, water is very likely to be the resource that will be most severely affected by climate change. It has been shown that small perturbations in precipitation frequency and/or quantity can result in significant impacts on the mean annual discharge. Moreover, modest changes in natural inflows result in larger changes in reservoir storage. There is however great uncertainty linked to changes in both the magnitude and direction of future hydrological trends. This presentation discusses the various sources of this uncertainty and their potential impact on the prediction of future hydrological trends. A companion paper will look at adaptation potential, taking into account some of the sources of uncertainty discussed in this presentation. Uncertainty is separated into two main components: climatic uncertainty and 'model and methods' uncertainty. Climatic uncertainty is linked to uncertainty in future greenhouse gas emission scenarios (GHGES) and to general circulation models (GCMs), whose representation of topography and climate processes is imperfect, in large part due to computational limitations. The uncertainty linked to natural variability (which may or may not increase) is also part of the climatic uncertainty. 'Model and methods' uncertainty regroups the uncertainty linked to the different approaches and models needed to transform climate data so that they can be used by hydrological models (such as downscaling methods) and the uncertainty of the models themselves and of their use in a changed climate. The impacts of the various sources of uncertainty on the hydrology of a watershed are demonstrated on the Peribonka River basin (Quebec, Canada). The results indicate that all sources of uncertainty can be important and outline the importance of taking these sources into account for any impact and adaptation studies. Recommendations are outlined for such studies. (author)

  17. Oil Production, The Price Crash and Uncertainty in Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murray, J. W.

    2015-12-01

    World oil production increased to about 74 million barrels per day by January 2005, and was fairly constant until 2011 when it started to increase to 77.8 mb/d in 2014. This spectacular increase of 4 mb/d was almost entirely due to a sharp increase in production in the US from shale formations, called light tight oil (LTO). World oil production minus this increase in US LTO Production has been flat since 2005 at about 74 mb/d. When US production starts to decline, world oil production likely will as well. That surge is forecast to end soon because LTO is expensive to produce, the first year decline rates are extremely high requiring many new wells each year to maintain or increase production and the most productive locations have already been drilled. It is unprofitable for the Exploration and Production (E&P) companies. Full-year free cash flow has been negative for most tight oil E&P companies since 2009. The total negative cash flow for the 19 largest E&P companies totaled 10.5B in 2014. The surge in US LTO production created an imbalance in global supply and demand and resulted in a 50% decrease in the price of oil. The tight-oil producers who were are financially marginal at an oil price greater than 90 per barrel are even more so at the lower price. As a result the surge in US production of LTO is declining, making it unlikely that world oil production will exceed the present value of about 28 Gb/yr (equivalent to 75 mb/d) (175 EJ/yr). Many of the SRES (IPCC Special Report on Emission Scenarios) and RCP (IPCC Representative Concentration Pathways) projections (especially RCP 8.5 and 6) require CO2 emissions due to oil consumption in the range of 32 Gb/yr to 57 Gb/yr (200 to 350 EJ/yr). The higher values would require a doubling of world oil production. It is highly uncertain whether the higher CO2 scenarios will be reached. This is an element of uncertainty missing from most considerations of future climate change.

  18. On the dominant uncertainty source of climate change projections at the local scale

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fatichi, Simone; Ivanov, Valeriy; Paschalis, Athanasios; Molnar, Peter; Rimkus, Stefan; Kim, Jongho; Peleg, Nadav; Burlando, Paolo; Caporali, Enrica

    2016-04-01

    Decision makers and stakeholders are usually concerned about climate change projections at local spatial scales and fine temporal resolutions. This contrasts with the reliability of climate models, which is typically higher at the global and regional scales, Therefore, there is a demand for advanced methodologies that offer the capability of transferring predictions of climate models and relative uncertainty to scales commensurate with practical applications and for higher order statistics (e.g., few square kilometres and sub-daily scale). A stochastic downscaling technique that makes use of an hourly weather generator (AWE-GEN) and of a Bayesian methodology to weight realizations from different climate models is used to generate local scale meteorological time series of plausible "futures". We computed factors of change from realizations of 32 climate models used in the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5) and for different emission scenarios (RCP 4.5 and RCP 8.5). Future climate projections for several meteorological variables (precipitation, air temperature, relative humidity, shortwave radiation) are simulated at three locations characterized by remarkably different climates, Zurich (Switzlerand), Miami and San Francisco (USA). The methodology is designed to partition three main sources of uncertainty: uncertainty due to climate models (model epistemic uncertainty), anthropogenic forcings (scenario uncertainty), and internal climate variability (stochastic uncertainty). The three types of uncertainty sources are considered as dependent, implicitly accounting for possible co-variances among the sources. For air temperature, the magnitude of the different uncertainty sources is comparable for mid-of-the-century projections, while scenario uncertainty dominates at large lead-times. The dominant source of uncertainty for changes in precipitation mean and extremes is internal climate variability, which is accounting for more than 80% of the total

  19. Managing uncertainty in soil carbon feedbacks to climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bradford, Mark A.; Wieder, William R.; Bonan, Gordon B.; Fierer, Noah; Raymond, Peter A.; Crowther, Thomas W.

    2016-08-01

    Planetary warming may be exacerbated if it accelerates loss of soil carbon to the atmosphere. This carbon-cycle-climate feedback is included in climate projections. Yet, despite ancillary data supporting a positive feedback, there is limited evidence for soil carbon loss under warming. The low confidence engendered in feedback projections is reduced further by the common representation in models of an outdated knowledge of soil carbon turnover. 'Model-knowledge integration' -- representing in models an advanced understanding of soil carbon stabilization -- is the first step to build confidence. This will inform experiments that further increase confidence by resolving competing mechanisms that most influence projected soil-carbon stocks. Improving feedback projections is an imperative for establishing greenhouse gas emission targets that limit climate change.

  20. Climate change impacts and uncertainties in flood risk management: Examples from the North Sea Region

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lawrence, D.; Graham, L.P.; Besten, J. Den; Andreasson, J.; Bergstroem, S.; Engen-Skaugen, T.; Foerland, E.; Groen, R.; Jespersen, M.; Jong, K. de; Olsson, J.

    2012-07-01

    This report presents methods used for estimating the hydrological impacts of climate change and their uncertainties, the expected impacts on extreme flows in Norway, and in Sweden with particular reference to Lake Vaenern, and examples of climate change impacts on river discharge and on agriculture in the Netherlands. Work considering changes in extreme precipitation is also reported, as are methods and strategies for communicating climate change impacts in flood management practice. (eb)

  1. Social Discounting of Large Dams with Climate Change Uncertainty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marc Jeuland

    2010-06-01

    This paper reviews the recent discounting controversy and examines its implications for the appraisal of an illustrative hydropower project in Ethiopia. The analysis uses an integrated hydro-economic model that accounts for how the dam’s transboundary impacts vary with climate change. The real value of the dam is found to be highly sensitive to assumptions about future economic growth. The argument for investment is weakest under conditions of robust global economic growth, particularly if these coincide with unfavourable hydrological or development factors related to the project. If however long-term growth is reduced, the value of the dam tends to increase. There may also be distributional or local arguments favouring investment, if growth in the investment region lags behind that of the rest of the globe. In such circumstances, a large dam can be seen as a form of insurance that protects future vulnerable generations against the possibility of macroeconomic instability or climate shocks.

  2. The cascade of uncertainty in modeling the impacts of climate change on Europe's forests

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reyer, Christopher; Lasch-Born, Petra; Suckow, Felicitas; Gutsch, Martin

    2015-04-01

    Projecting the impacts of global change on forest ecosystems is a cornerstone for designing sustainable forest management strategies and paramount for assessing the potential of Europe's forest to contribute to the EU bioeconomy. Research on climate change impacts on forests relies to a large extent on model applications along a model chain from Integrated Assessment Models to General and Regional Circulation Models that provide important driving variables for forest models. Or to decision support systems that synthesize findings of more detailed forest models to inform forest managers. At each step in the model chain, model-specific uncertainties about, amongst others, parameter values, input data or model structure accumulate, leading to a cascade of uncertainty. For example, climate change impacts on forests strongly depend on the in- or exclusion of CO2-effects or on the use of an ensemble of climate models rather than relying on one particular climate model. In the past, these uncertainties have not or only partly been considered in studies of climate change impacts on forests. This has left managers and decision-makers in doubt of how robust the projected impacts on forest ecosystems are. We deal with this cascade of uncertainty in a structured way and the objective of this presentation is to assess how different types of uncertainties affect projections of the effects of climate change on forest ecosystems. To address this objective we synthesized a large body of scientific literature on modeled productivity changes and the effects of extreme events on plant processes. Furthermore, we apply the process-based forest growth model 4C to forest stands all over Europe and assess how different climate models, emission scenarios and assumptions about the parameters and structure of 4C affect the uncertainty of the model projections. We show that there are consistent regional changes in forest productivity such as an increase in NPP in cold and wet regions while

  3. Impacts of Future Climate Change on California Perennial Crop Yields: Model Projections with Climate and Crop Uncertainties

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lobell, D; Field, C; Cahill, K; Bonfils, C

    2006-01-10

    Most research on the agricultural impacts of climate change has focused on the major annual crops, yet perennial cropping systems are less adaptable and thus potentially more susceptible to damage. Improved assessments of yield responses to future climate are needed to prioritize adaptation strategies in the many regions where perennial crops are economically and culturally important. These impact assessments, in turn, must rely on climate and crop models that contain often poorly defined uncertainties. We evaluated the impact of climate change on six major perennial crops in California: wine grapes, almonds, table grapes, oranges, walnuts, and avocados. Outputs from multiple climate models were used to evaluate climate uncertainty, while multiple statistical crop models, derived by resampling historical databases, were used to address crop response uncertainties. We find that, despite these uncertainties, climate change in California is very likely to put downward pressure on yields of almonds, walnuts, avocados, and table grapes by 2050. Without CO{sub 2} fertilization or adaptation measures, projected losses range from 0 to >40% depending on the crop and the trajectory of climate change. Climate change uncertainty generally had a larger impact on projections than crop model uncertainty, although the latter was substantial for several crops. Opportunities for expansion into cooler regions are identified, but this adaptation would require substantial investments and may be limited by non-climatic constraints. Given the long time scales for growth and production of orchards and vineyards ({approx}30 years), climate change should be an important factor in selecting perennial varieties and deciding whether and where perennials should be planted.

  4. How to communicate the uncertainties in climate change research outcomes?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verwayen, Barbara

    2006-01-01

    Uncertainty is not confined to science; it is a fact of every day life as well. We wonder about what the weather will be like tomorrow, or what the next elections will bring. But these uncertainties rarely seem to bother us, while we have become accustome

  5. Projecting malaria hazard from climate change in eastern Africa using large ensembles to estimate uncertainty.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leedale, Joseph; Tompkins, Adrian M; Caminade, Cyril; Jones, Anne E; Nikulin, Grigory; Morse, Andrew P

    2016-01-01

    The effect of climate change on the spatiotemporal dynamics of malaria transmission is studied using an unprecedented ensemble of climate projections, employing three diverse bias correction and downscaling techniques, in order to partially account for uncertainty in climate- driven malaria projections. These large climate ensembles drive two dynamical and spatially explicit epidemiological malaria models to provide future hazard projections for the focus region of eastern Africa. While the two malaria models produce very distinct transmission patterns for the recent climate, their response to future climate change is similar in terms of sign and spatial distribution, with malaria transmission moving to higher altitudes in the East African Community (EAC) region, while transmission reduces in lowland, marginal transmission zones such as South Sudan. The climate model ensemble generally projects warmer and wetter conditions over EAC. The simulated malaria response appears to be driven by temperature rather than precipitation effects. This reduces the uncertainty due to the climate models, as precipitation trends in tropical regions are very diverse, projecting both drier and wetter conditions with the current state-of-the-art climate model ensemble. The magnitude of the projected changes differed considerably between the two dynamical malaria models, with one much more sensitive to climate change, highlighting that uncertainty in the malaria projections is also associated with the disease modelling approach. PMID:27063736

  6. The optimal paths of climate change mitigation and adaptation under certainty and uncertainty

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Felgenhauer, T.; Bruin, de K.C.

    2009-01-01

    Tradeoffs between climate change mitigation and adaptation policies are explored under both certainty and uncertainty with learning using a numerical two-period decision model. We first replicate a version of the Adaptation in DICE climate model (AD-DICE) (de Bruin et al., 2009), which modifies the

  7. Using statistical model to simulate the impact of climate change on maize yield with climate and crop uncertainties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yi; Zhao, Yanxia; Wang, Chunyi; Chen, Sining

    2016-09-01

    Assessment of the impact of climate change on crop productions with considering uncertainties is essential for properly identifying and decision-making agricultural practices that are sustainable. In this study, we employed 24 climate projections consisting of the combinations of eight GCMs and three emission scenarios representing the climate projections uncertainty, and two crop statistical models with 100 sets of parameters in each model representing parameter uncertainty within the crop models. The goal of this study was to evaluate the impact of climate change on maize (Zea mays L.) yield at three locations (Benxi, Changling, and Hailun) across Northeast China (NEC) in periods 2010-2039 and 2040-2069, taking 1976-2005 as the baseline period. The multi-models ensembles method is an effective way to deal with the uncertainties. The results of ensemble simulations showed that maize yield reductions were less than 5 % in both future periods relative to the baseline. To further understand the contributions of individual sources of uncertainty, such as climate projections and crop model parameters, in ensemble yield simulations, variance decomposition was performed. The results indicated that the uncertainty from climate projections was much larger than that contributed by crop model parameters. Increased ensemble yield variance revealed the increasing uncertainty in the yield simulation in the future periods.

  8. Uncertainty in climate change and its impacts on the United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monier, E.; Scott, J. R.; Sokolov, A. P.; Gao, X.; Schlosser, C. A.

    2012-12-01

    Simulations of climate change that support work by impact modelers must take into account multiple dimensions of uncertainty, from uncertainty in emissions scenarios to uncertainty in the climate response and including structural uncertainty arising from differences in climate models. In order to investigate uncertainty in climate change over the United States, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Joint Program on the Science and Policy of Global Change has implemented a two-pronged approach that revolves around the Integrated Global System Model (IGSM) framework, an integrated assessment model that couples an earth system model of intermediate complexity (with a 2D zonal-mean atmosphere) to a human activity model. Since the IGSM includes a human activity model, it is possible to analyze uncertainties in emissions resulting from uncertainties intrinsic to the economic model, from parametric uncertainty to uncertainty in future climate policies. Another major feature is the flexibility to vary key climate parameters controlling the climate response: climate sensitivity, net aerosol forcing and ocean heat uptake rate. On the one hand, the MIT IGSM-CAM framework links the IGSM to the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) Community Atmosphere Model (CAM), with new modules developed and implemented in CAM to allow climate parameters to be changed to match those of the IGSM. On the other hand, a pattern scaling method extends the latitudinal projections of the IGSM 2D zonal-mean atmosphere by applying longitudinally resolved patterns from observations, and from climate-model projections archived from exercises carried out for the 4th Assessment Report (AR4) of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). The IGSM-CAM physically simulates changes in both mean climate and extreme events, but relies on one particular model, while the pattern scaling approach allows spatial patterns of different climate models to be considered, but cannot

  9. Managing uncertainty in soil carbon feedbacks to climate change

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bradford, M.A.; Wieder, W.R.; Bonan, G.B.; Fierer, N.; Raymond, P.A.; Crowther, Thomas W.

    2016-01-01

    Planetary warming may be exacerbated if it accelerates loss of soil carbon to the atmosphere. This carbon-cycle–climate feedback is included in climate projections. Yet, despite ancillary data supporting a positive feedback, there is limited evidence for soil carbon loss under warming. The low confi

  10. Uncertainty in the response of transpiration to CO2 and implications for climate change

    OpenAIRE

    Mengis, Nadine; Keller, David P.; M. Eby; Oschlies, Andreas

    2015-01-01

    While terrestrial precipitation is a societally highly relevant climate variable, there is little consensus among climate models about its projected 21st century changes. An important source of precipitable water over land is plant transpiration. Plants control transpiration by opening and closing their stomata. The sensitivity of this process to increasing CO2 concentrations is uncertain. To assess the impact of this uncertainty on future climate, we perform experiments with an intermediate ...

  11. The uncertainty cascade in flood risk assessment under changing climatic conditions - the Biala Tarnowska case study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doroszkiewicz, Joanna; Romanowicz, Renata

    2016-04-01

    Uncertainty in the results of the hydraulic model is not only associated with the limitations of that model and the shortcomings of data. An important factor that has a major impact on the uncertainty of the flood risk assessment in a changing climate conditions is associated with the uncertainty of future climate scenarios (IPCC WG I, 2013). Future climate projections provided by global climate models are used to generate future runoff required as an input to hydraulic models applied in the derivation of flood risk maps. Biala Tarnowska catchment, situated in southern Poland is used as a case study. Future discharges at the input to a hydraulic model are obtained using the HBV model and climate projections obtained from the EUROCORDEX project. The study describes a cascade of uncertainty related to different stages of the process of derivation of flood risk maps under changing climate conditions. In this context it takes into account the uncertainty of future climate projections, an uncertainty of flow routing model, the propagation of that uncertainty through the hydraulic model, and finally, the uncertainty related to the derivation of flood risk maps. One of the aims of this study is an assessment of a relative impact of different sources of uncertainty on the uncertainty of flood risk maps. Due to the complexity of the process, an assessment of total uncertainty of maps of inundation probability might be very computer time consuming. As a way forward we present an application of a hydraulic model simulator based on a nonlinear transfer function model for the chosen locations along the river reach. The transfer function model parameters are estimated based on the simulations of the hydraulic model at each of the model cross-section. The study shows that the application of the simulator substantially reduces the computer requirements related to the derivation of flood risk maps under future climatic conditions. Acknowledgements: This work was supported by the

  12. Communication and perception of uncertainty via graphics in disciplinary and interdisciplinary climate change research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lackner, Bettina C.; Kirchengast, Gottfried

    2015-04-01

    Besides written and spoken language, graphical displays play an important role in communicating scientific findings or explaining scientific methods, both within one and between various disciplines. Uncertainties and probabilities are generally difficult to communicate, especially via graphics. Graphics including uncertainty sometimes need detailed written or oral descriptions to be understood. "Good" graphics should ease scientific communication, especially amongst different disciplines. One key objective of the Doctoral Programme "Climate Change: Uncertainties, Thresholds and Coping Strategies" (http://dk-climate-change.uni-graz.at/en/), located at the University of Graz, is to reach a better understanding of climate change uncertainties by bridging research in multiple disciplines, including physical climate sciences, geosciences, systems and sustainability sciences, environmental economics, and climate ethics. This asks for efforts into the formulation of a "common language", not only as to words, but also as to graphics. The focus of this work is on two topics: (1) What different kinds of uncertainties (e.g., data uncertainty, model uncertainty) are included in the graphics of the recent IPCC reports of all three working groups (WGs) and in what ways do uncertainties get illustrated? (2) How are these graphically displayed uncertainties perceived by researchers of a similar research discipline and from researchers of different disciplines than the authors of the graphics? To answer the first question, the IPCC graphics including uncertainties are grouped and analyzed with respect to different kinds of uncertainties to filter out most of the commonly used types of displays. The graphics will also be analyzed with respect to their WG origin, as we assume that graphics from researchers rooted in, e.g., physical climate sciences and geosciences (mainly IPCC WG 1) differ from those of researchers rooted in, e.g., economics or system sciences (mainly WG 3). In a

  13. Sensitivity of ocean acidification and oxygen to the uncertainty in climate change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Due to increasing atmospheric CO2 concentrations and associated climate change, the global ocean is undergoing substantial physical and biogeochemical changes. Among these, changes in ocean oxygen and carbonate chemistry have great implication for marine biota. There is considerable uncertainty in the projections of future climate change, and it is unclear how the uncertainty in climate change would also affect the projection of oxygen and carbonate chemistry. To investigate this issue, we use an Earth system model of intermediate complexity to perform a set of simulations, including that which involves no radiative effect of atmospheric CO2 and those which involve CO2-induced climate change with climate sensitivity varying from 0.5 °C to 4.5 °C. Atmospheric CO2 concentration is prescribed to follow RCP 8.5 pathway and its extensions. Climate change affects carbonate chemistry and oxygen mainly through its impact on ocean temperature, ocean ventilation, and concentration of dissolved inorganic carbon and alkalinity. It is found that climate change mitigates the decrease of carbonate ions at the ocean surface but has negligible effect on surface ocean pH. Averaged over the whole ocean, climate change acts to decrease oxygen concentration but mitigates the CO2-induced reduction of carbonate ion and pH. In our simulations, by year 2500, every degree increase of climate sensitivity warms the ocean by 0.8 °C and reduces ocean-mean dissolved oxygen concentration by 5.0%. Meanwhile, every degree increase of climate sensitivity buffers CO2-induced reduction in ocean-mean carbonate ion concentration and pH by 3.4% and 0.02 units, respectively. Our study demonstrates different sensitivities of ocean temperature, carbonate chemistry, and oxygen, in terms of both the sign and magnitude to the amount of climate change, which have great implications for understanding the response of ocean biota to climate change. (letters)

  14. Methods for Assessing Uncertainties in Climate Change, Impacts and Responses (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manning, M. R.; Swart, R.

    2009-12-01

    Assessing the scientific uncertainties or confidence levels for the many different aspects of climate change is particularly important because of the seriousness of potential impacts and the magnitude of economic and political responses that are needed to mitigate climate change effectively. This has made the treatment of uncertainty and confidence a key feature in the assessments carried out by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Because climate change is very much a cross-disciplinary area of science, adequately dealing with uncertainties requires recognition of their wide range and different perspectives on assessing and communicating those uncertainties. The structural differences that exist across disciplines are often embedded deeply in the corresponding literature that is used as the basis for an IPCC assessment. The assessment of climate change science by the IPCC has from its outset tried to report the levels of confidence and uncertainty in the degree of understanding in both the underlying multi-disciplinary science and in projections for future climate. The growing recognition of the seriousness of this led to the formation of a detailed approach for consistent treatment of uncertainties in the IPCC’s Third Assessment Report (TAR) [Moss and Schneider, 2000]. However, in completing the TAR there remained some systematic differences between the disciplines raising concerns about the level of consistency. So further consideration of a systematic approach to uncertainties was undertaken for the Fourth Assessment Report (AR4). The basis for the approach used in the AR4 was developed at an expert meeting of scientists representing many different disciplines. This led to the introduction of a broader way of addressing uncertainties in the AR4 [Manning et al., 2004] which was further refined by lengthy discussions among many IPCC Lead Authors, for over a year, resulting in a short summary of a standard approach to be followed for that

  15. Relative contributions of the uncertainty in climate sensitivity and rate of the heat uptake by the ocean in the uncertainty of the projected climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sokolov, A. P.; Monier, E.; Forest, C. E.

    2013-12-01

    Climate sensitivity and rate of the heat uptake by the deep ocean are two main characteristics of the Climate System defining its response to a prescribed external forcing. We study relative contributions of the uncertainty in these two characteristics by means of numerical simulations with the MIT Earth System Model (MESM) of intermediate complexity. The MESM consists of a 2D (zonally averaged) atmospheric model coupled to an anomaly diffusing ocean model. Probability distributions for climate sensitivity and rate of oceanic heat uptake are obtained using available data on radiative forcing and temperature changes over 20th century. The results from three 400-member ensembles of long-term (years 1860 to 3000) climate simulations for the IPCC RCP6.0 forcing scenario will be presented. The values of climate sensitivity and rate of oceanic heat uptake, used in the first ensemble, were chosen by sampling their joint probability distribution. In the other two ensembles uncertainty in only one characteristic was taken into account, while the median value was used for the other. Results show that contribution of the uncertainty in climate sensitivity and rate of heat uptake by the deep ocean into the overall uncertainty in projected surface warming and sea level rise is time dependent. Contribution of the uncertainty in rate of heat uptake into uncertainty in the projected surface air temperature increase is rather similar to that of the uncertainty in climate sensitivity while forcing is increasing, but it becomes significantly smaller after forcing is stabilized. The magnitude of surface warming at the end of 30th century is defined almost exclusively by the climate sensitivity distribution. In contrast, uncertainty in the heat uptake has a noticeable effect on projected sea level rise for the whole period of simulations.

  16. Uncertainty assessment of urban pluvial flood risk in a context of climate change adaptation decision making

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Arnbjerg-Nielsen, Karsten; Zhou, Qianqian

    2014-01-01

    of risk changes over time. The overall uncertainty is then attributed to six bulk processes: climate change impact, urban rainfall-runoff processes, stage-depth functions, unit cost of repair, cost of adaptation measures, and discount rate. We apply the approach on an urban hydrological catchment...

  17. Contributions to uncertainty in projections of future drought under climate change scenarios

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    I. H. Taylor

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Drought is a cumulative event, often difficult to define and involving wide reaching consequences for agriculture, ecosystems, water availability, and society. Understanding how the occurrence of drought may change in the future and which sources of uncertainty are dominant can inform appropriate decisions to guide drought impacts assessments. Uncertainties in future projections of drought arise from several sources and our aim is to understand how these sources of uncertainty contribute to future projections of drought. We consider four sources of uncertainty; climate model uncertainty associated with future climate projections, future emissions of greenhouse gases (future scenario uncertainty, type of drought (drought index uncertainty and drought event definition (threshold uncertainty. Three drought indices (the Standardised Precipitation Index (SPI, Soil Moisture Anomaly (SMA and Palmer Drought Severity Index (PDSI are calculated for the A1B and RCP2.6 future emissions scenarios using monthly model output from a 57 member perturbed parameter ensemble of climate simulations of the HadCM3C Earth system model, for the baseline period, 1961–1990, and the period 2070–2099 (representing the 2080s. We consider where there are significant increases or decreases in the proportion of time spent in drought in the 2080s compared to the baseline and compare the effects from the four sources of uncertainty. Our results suggest that, of the included uncertainty sources, choice of drought index is the most important factor influencing uncertainty in future projections of drought (60%–85% of total included uncertainty. There is a greater range of uncertainty between drought indices than that between the mitigation scenario RCP2.6 and the A1B emissions scenario (5%–6% in the 2050s to 17%–18% in the 2080s and across the different model variants in the ensemble (9%–17%. Choice of drought threshold has the least influence on uncertainty in future

  18. Icarus's discovery: Acting on global climate change in the face of uncertainty

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The mythological character Icarus had the misfortune of learning the consequences of his decision to fly too near the sun at the same time he employed his decision. Although Daedalus tried to reduce the uncertainties of his son's decision by warning Icarus of the possible outcome, Icarus had no empirical knowledge of what would actually happen until his waxen wings melted and he fell to the sea. Like Icarus, man has no empirical knowledge or conclusive evidence today of the possible effects of global climate change. And though the consequences of policy decisions toward global climate change may not be as catastrophic as falling into the sea, the social and economic impacts of those decisions will be substantial. There are broad uncertainties related to the scientific and ecological aspects of global climate change. But clearly the ''politics'' of global climate change issues are moving at a faster rate than the science. There is a public outcry for action now, in the face of uncertainty. This paper profiles a case study of a southwestern utility's use of multi-attribute preference theory to reduce uncertainties and analyze its options for addressing global climate change issues

  19. Regeneration decisions in forestry under climate change related uncertainties and risks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schou, Erik; Thorsen, Bo Jellesmark; Jacobsen, Jette Bredahl

    2015-01-01

    Future climate development and its effects on forest ecosystems are not easily predicted or described in terms of standard probability concepts. Nevertheless, forest managers continuously make long-term decisions that will be subject to climate change impacts. The manager's assessment of possible...... developments and impacts and the related uncertainty will affect the combined decision on timing of final harvest and the choice of species for regeneration. We analyse harvest of a Norway spruce stand with the option to regenerate with Norway spruce or oak. We use simulated variations in biophysical risks......) assigned to each outcome. Results show that the later a forest manager expects to obtain certainty about climate change or the more skewed their belief distribution, the more will decisions be based on ex ante assessments — suggesting that if forest managers believe that climate change uncertainty...

  20. Towards Quantifying Robust Uncertainty Information for Climate Change Decision-making

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forest, C. E.; Libardoni, A. G.; Tsai, C. Y.; Sokolov, A. P.; Monier, E.; Sriver, R. L.; Keller, K.

    2015-12-01

    The expected future impacts of climate change can be a manageable problem provided the risks to society can be properly assessed. Given our current understanding of both the climate system and the related decision problems, we strive to develop tools that can assess these risks and provide robust strategies given possible futures. In this talk, we will present two examples from recent work ranging from global to regional scales to highlight these issues. Typically, we begin by assessing the probability of events without information on impacts specifically, however, recent developments allow us to address the risk management problem directly. In the first example, we discuss recent advances in quantifying probability distributions for equilibrium climate sensitivity (ECS). A comprehensive examination of factors all contributing to the total uncertainty in ECS can include updates to estimates of observed climate changes (oceanic, atmospheric, and surface records), improved understanding of radiative forcing and internal variability, revised statistical calibration methods, and overall longer records. In a second example, we contrast the assessment of probabilistic information for global scale climate change with that for regional changes. The relative importance of model structural uncertainty, uncertainty in future forcing, and the role of internal variability will be compared within the context of the decision making problem. In both cases, robust estimates of uncertainty are desired and needed… but surprises happen. Incorporating these basic issues into robust decision making frameworks is a long-term research goal with near-term implications.

  1. Mapping climate change impact on vegetation and the associated uncertainties in the Euro-Mediterranean area

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laanaia, Nabil; Calvet, Jean-Christophe; Carrer, Dominique; Séférian, Roland

    2016-04-01

    Crops, grasslands and forests in the Euro-Mediterranean area are already affected by the climate change impacts and will be even more in the future. The knowledge of the extent of these impacts will allow the implementation of adaptation strategies of agriculture and forestry to climate change. The aim of this study is to explore the potential implications of climate change and characterize significant future vegetation trends and their uncertainties. The ISBA (Interactions between Soil, Biosphere, and Atmosphere), land surface model is developed by Meteo-France for meteorological, hydrological and climatic applications. In this study, ISBA is forced by the atmospheric variables produced by different climate models. We use an ensemble of four climate models, following the RCP8.5 scenario, to drive the ISBA model. The simulations cover 114 year from 1986 to 2099. Two time horizons 2029-2058 (near future) and 2070-2099 (distant future) are compared to the 1988-2017 period. The ISBA model is used to provide several simulations of plant growth and carbon storage. Four vegetation types (rainfed straw cereals and grasslands, broadleaf and coniferous forests) are considered. The leaf area index simulations are used to determine phenology variables (leaf onset, leaf offset). A statistical analysis is used to quantify the impact of climate change and to show whether the future trends are significant or not. The uncertainties related to these trends are characterized. A spatial classification method is used to map the spatial variability of the impact of climate change.

  2. Bio-physical vs. Economic Uncertainty in the Analysis of Climate Change Impacts on World Agriculture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hertel, T. W.; Lobell, D. B.

    2010-12-01

    Accumulating evidence suggests that agricultural production could be greatly affected by climate change, but there remains little quantitative understanding of how these agricultural impacts would affect economic livelihoods in poor countries. The recent paper by Hertel, Burke and Lobell (GEC, 2010) considers three scenarios of agricultural impacts of climate change, corresponding to the fifth, fiftieth, and ninety fifth percentiles of projected yield distributions for the world’s crops in 2030. They evaluate the resulting changes in global commodity prices, national economic welfare, and the incidence of poverty in a set of 15 developing countries. Although the small price changes under the medium scenario are consistent with previous findings, their low productivity scenario reveals the potential for much larger food price changes than reported in recent studies which have hitherto focused on the most likely outcomes. The poverty impacts of price changes under the extremely adverse scenario are quite heterogeneous and very significant in some population strata. They conclude that it is critical to look beyond central case climate shocks and beyond a simple focus on yields and highly aggregated poverty impacts. In this paper, we conduct a more formal, systematic sensitivity analysis (SSA) with respect to uncertainty in the biophysical impacts of climate change on agriculture, by explicitly specifying joint distributions for global yield changes - this time focusing on 2050. This permits us to place confidence intervals on the resulting price impacts and poverty results which reflect the uncertainty inherited from the biophysical side of the analysis. We contrast this with the economic uncertainty inherited from the global general equilibrium model (GTAP), by undertaking SSA with respect to the behavioral parameters in that model. This permits us to assess which type of uncertainty is more important for regional price and poverty outcomes. Finally, we undertake a

  3. Uncertainties in climate change projections and regional downscaling: implications for water resources management

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    W. Buytaert

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Climate change is expected to have a large impact on water resources worldwide. A major problem in assessing the potential impact of a changing climate on these resources is the difference in spatial scale between available climate change projections and water resources management. Regional climate models (RCMs are often used for the spatial disaggregation of the outputs of global circulation models. However, RCMs are time-intensive to run and typically only a small number of model runs is available for a certain region of interest. This paper investigates the value of the improved representation of local climate processes by a regional climate model for water resources management in the tropical Andes of Ecuador. This region has a complex hydrology and its water resources are under pressure. Compared to the IPCC AR4 model ensemble, the regional climate model PRECIS does indeed capture local gradients better than global models, but locally the model is prone to large discrepancies between observed and modelled precipitation. It is concluded that a further increase in resolution is necessary to represent local gradients properly. Furthermore, to assess the uncertainty in downscaling, an ensemble of regional climate models should be implemented. Finally, translating the climate variables to streamflow using a hydrological model constitutes a smaller but not negligible source of uncertainty.

  4. Assessing climate change and socio-economic uncertainties in long term management of water resources

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jahanshahi, Golnaz; Dawson, Richard; Walsh, Claire; Birkinshaw, Stephen; Glenis, Vassilis

    2015-04-01

    Long term management of water resources is challenging for decision makers given the range of uncertainties that exist. Such uncertainties are a function of long term drivers of change, such as climate, environmental loadings, demography, land use and other socio economic drivers. Impacts of climate change on frequency of extreme events such as drought make it a serious threat to water resources and water security. The release of probabilistic climate information, such as the UKCP09 scenarios, provides improved understanding of some uncertainties in climate models. This has motivated a more rigorous approach to dealing with other uncertainties in order to understand the sensitivity of investment decisions to future uncertainty and identify adaptation options that are as far as possible robust. We have developed and coupled a system of models that includes a weather generator, simulations of catchment hydrology, demand for water and the water resource system. This integrated model has been applied in the Thames catchment which supplies the city of London, UK. This region is one of the driest in the UK and hence sensitive to water availability. In addition, it is one of the fastest growing parts of the UK and plays an important economic role. Key uncertainties in long term water resources in the Thames catchment, many of which result from earth system processes, are identified and quantified. The implications of these uncertainties are explored using a combination of uncertainty analysis and sensitivity testing. The analysis shows considerable uncertainty in future rainfall, river flow and consequently water resource. For example, results indicate that by the 2050s, low flow (Q95) in the Thames catchment will range from -44 to +9% compared with the control scenario (1970s). Consequently, by the 2050s the average number of drought days are expected to increase 4-6 times relative to the 1970s. Uncertainties associated with urban growth increase these risks further

  5. Evaluating the effectiveness of conservation site networks under climate change : accounting for uncertainty.

    OpenAIRE

    Bagchi, R.; Crosby, M.; Huntley, B.; Hole, D.G.; Butchart, S.; Collingham, Y.C.; Kalra, M.; Rajkumar, J.; Rahmani, A; M. Pandey; Gurung, H.; Trai, T.; Van Quang, N.; Willis, S. G.

    2013-01-01

    We forecasted potential impacts of climate change on the ability of a network of key sites for bird conservation (Important Bird Areas; IBAs) to provide suitable climate for 370 bird species of current conservation concern in two Asian biodiversity hotspots: the Eastern Himalaya and Lower Mekong. Comparable studies have largely not accounted for uncertainty, which may lead to inappropriate conclusions. We quantified the contribution of four sources of variation (choice of general circulation ...

  6. Climate Projections and Uncertainty Communication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joslyn, Susan L; LeClerc, Jared E

    2016-01-01

    Lingering skepticism about climate change might be due in part to the way climate projections are perceived by members of the public. Variability between scientists' estimates might give the impression that scientists disagree about the fact of climate change rather than about details concerning the extent or timing. Providing uncertainty estimates might clarify that the variability is due in part to quantifiable uncertainty inherent in the prediction process, thereby increasing people's trust in climate projections. This hypothesis was tested in two experiments. Results suggest that including uncertainty estimates along with climate projections leads to an increase in participants' trust in the information. Analyses explored the roles of time, place, demographic differences (e.g., age, gender, education level, political party affiliation), and initial belief in climate change. Implications are discussed in terms of the potential benefit of adding uncertainty estimates to public climate projections. PMID:26695995

  7. Climate Projections and Uncertainty Communication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joslyn, Susan L; LeClerc, Jared E

    2016-01-01

    Lingering skepticism about climate change might be due in part to the way climate projections are perceived by members of the public. Variability between scientists' estimates might give the impression that scientists disagree about the fact of climate change rather than about details concerning the extent or timing. Providing uncertainty estimates might clarify that the variability is due in part to quantifiable uncertainty inherent in the prediction process, thereby increasing people's trust in climate projections. This hypothesis was tested in two experiments. Results suggest that including uncertainty estimates along with climate projections leads to an increase in participants' trust in the information. Analyses explored the roles of time, place, demographic differences (e.g., age, gender, education level, political party affiliation), and initial belief in climate change. Implications are discussed in terms of the potential benefit of adding uncertainty estimates to public climate projections.

  8. Forest management under climatic and social uncertainty: trade-offs between reducing climate change impacts and fostering adaptive capacity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seidl, Rupert; Lexer, Manfred J

    2013-01-15

    The unabated continuation of anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions and the lack of an international consensus on a stringent climate change mitigation policy underscore the importance of adaptation for coping with the all but inevitable changes in the climate system. Adaptation measures in forestry have particularly long lead times. A timely implementation is thus crucial for reducing the considerable climate vulnerability of forest ecosystems. However, since future environmental conditions as well as future societal demands on forests are inherently uncertain, a core requirement for adaptation is robustness to a wide variety of possible futures. Here we explicitly address the roles of climatic and social uncertainty in forest management, and tackle the question of robustness of adaptation measures in the context of multi-objective sustainable forest management (SFM). We used the Austrian Federal Forests (AFF) as a case study, and employed a comprehensive vulnerability assessment framework based on ecosystem modeling, multi-criteria decision analysis, and practitioner participation. We explicitly considered climate uncertainty by means of three climate change scenarios, and accounted for uncertainty in future social demands by means of three societal preference scenarios regarding SFM indicators. We found that the effects of climatic and social uncertainty on the projected performance of management were in the same order of magnitude, underlining the notion that climate change adaptation requires an integrated social-ecological perspective. Furthermore, our analysis of adaptation measures revealed considerable trade-offs between reducing adverse impacts of climate change and facilitating adaptive capacity. This finding implies that prioritization between these two general aims of adaptation is necessary in management planning, which we suggest can draw on uncertainty analysis: Where the variation induced by social-ecological uncertainty renders measures aiming to

  9. Adaptive Governance, Uncertainty, and Risk: Policy Framing and Responses to Climate Change, Drought, and Flood.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hurlbert, Margot; Gupta, Joyeeta

    2016-02-01

    As climate change impacts result in more extreme events (such as droughts and floods), the need to understand which policies facilitate effective climate change adaptation becomes crucial. Hence, this article answers the question: How do governments and policymakers frame policy in relation to climate change, droughts, and floods and what governance structures facilitate adaptation? This research interrogates and analyzes through content analysis, supplemented by semi-structured qualitative interviews, the policy response to climate change, drought, and flood in relation to agricultural producers in four case studies in river basins in Chile, Argentina, and Canada. First, an epistemological explanation of risk and uncertainty underscores a brief literature review of adaptive governance, followed by policy framing in relation to risk and uncertainty, and an analytical model is developed. Pertinent findings of the four cases are recounted, followed by a comparative analysis. In conclusion, recommendations are made to improve policies and expand adaptive governance to better account for uncertainty and risk. This article is innovative in that it proposes an expanded model of adaptive governance in relation to "risk" that can help bridge the barrier of uncertainty in science and policy. PMID:26630544

  10. Investment in flood protection measures under climate change uncertainty. An investment decision

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bruin, Karianne de

    2012-11-01

    Recent river flooding in Europe has triggered debates among scientists and policymakers on future projections of flood frequency and the need for adaptive investments, such as flood protection measures. Because there exists uncertainty about the impact of climate change of flood risk, such investments require a careful analysis of expected benefits and costs. The objective of this paper is to show how climate change uncertainty affects the decision to invest in flood protection measures. We develop a model that simulates optimal decision making in flood protection, it incorporates flexible timing of investment decisions and scientific uncertainty on the extent of climate change impacts. This model allows decision-makers to cope with the uncertain impacts of climate change on the frequency and damage of river flood events and minimises the risk of under- or over-investment. One of the innovative elements is that we explicitly distinguish between structural and non-structural flood protection measures. Our results show that the optimal investment decision today depends strongly on the cost structure of the adaptation measures and the discount rate, especially the ratio of fixed and weighted annual costs of the measures. A higher level of annual flood damage and later resolution of uncertainty in time increases the optimal investment. Furthermore, the optimal investment decision today is influenced by the possibility of the decision-maker to adjust his decision at a future moment in time.(auth)

  11. Hydrological cycle and climate change over France: mechanisms, uncertainties, impacts on water resources

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Discrepancies between climate models results over France are largely due to the complexity of mechanisms involved in the continental water cycle and thus on the ensuing uncertainties in the impact of the anthropological climate changes.This article presents the feedback mechanisms involved and emphasizes the importance for climate models to properly represent the hydrological cycle of today's climate. This is particularly critical to forecast the effect of climate change in summer over France, and more broadly, over the wide transition zone between Northern and Southern Europe. For these areas, a better understanding of the changes in the atmospheric circulation over the North Atlantic is also necessary. Ending with an impact study, this paper highlights that with today's understanding, important consequences are to be expected on water supply over France. (author)

  12. Partitioning and mapping uncertainties in ensembles of forecasts of species turnover under climate change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Diniz-Filho, José Alexandre F.; Bini, Luis Mauricio; Rangel, Thiago Fernando;

    2009-01-01

    of uncertainty in ensembles of forecasts is presented. We model the distributions of 3837 New World birds and project them into 2080. We then quantify and map the relative contribution of different sources of uncertainty from alternative methods for niche modeling, general circulation models (AOGCM......), and emission scenarios. The greatest source of uncertainty in forecasts of species range shifts arises from using alternative methods for niche modeling, followed by AOGCM, and their interaction. Our results concur with previous studies that discovered that projections from alternative models can be extremely......Forecasts of species range shifts under climate change are fraught with uncertainties and ensemble forecasting may provide a framework to deal with such uncertainties. Here, a novel approach to partition the variance among modeled attributes, such as richness or turnover, and map sources...

  13. Climate Certainties and Uncertainties

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    In issue 380 of Futuribles in December 2011, Antonin Pottier analysed in detail the workings of what is today termed 'climate scepticism' - namely the propensity of certain individuals to contest the reality of climate change on the basis of pseudo-scientific arguments. He emphasized particularly that what fuels the debate on climate change is, largely, the degree of uncertainty inherent in the consequences to be anticipated from observation of the facts, not the description of the facts itself. In his view, the main aim of climate sceptics is to block the political measures for combating climate change. However, since they do not admit to this political posture, they choose instead to deny the scientific reality. This month, Futuribles complements this socio-psychological analysis of climate-sceptical discourse with an - in this case, wholly scientific - analysis of what we know (or do not know) about climate change on our planet. Pierre Morel gives a detailed account of the state of our knowledge in the climate field and what we are able to predict in the medium/long-term. After reminding us of the influence of atmospheric meteorological processes on the climate, he specifies the extent of global warming observed since 1850 and the main origin of that warming, as revealed by the current state of knowledge: the increase in the concentration of greenhouse gases. He then describes the changes in meteorological regimes (showing also the limits of climate simulation models), the modifications of hydrological regimes, and also the prospects for rises in sea levels. He also specifies the mechanisms that may potentially amplify all these phenomena and the climate disasters that might ensue. Lastly, he shows what are the scientific data that cannot be disregarded, the consequences of which are now inescapable (melting of the ice-caps, rises in sea level etc.), the only remaining uncertainty in this connection being the date at which these things will happen. 'In this

  14. Uncertainty in the response of transpiration to CO2 and implications for climate change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    While terrestrial precipitation is a societally highly relevant climate variable, there is little consensus among climate models about its projected 21st century changes. An important source of precipitable water over land is plant transpiration. Plants control transpiration by opening and closing their stomata. The sensitivity of this process to increasing CO2 concentrations is uncertain. To assess the impact of this uncertainty on future climate, we perform experiments with an intermediate complexity Earth System Climate Model (UVic ESCM) for a range of model-imposed transpiration-sensitivities to CO2. Changing the sensitivity of transpiration to CO2 causes simulated terrestrial precipitation to change by −10% to +27% by 2100 under a high emission scenario. This study emphasises the importance of an improved assessment of the dynamics of environmental impact on vegetation to better predict future changes of the terrestrial hydrological and carbon cycles. (letter)

  15. Uncertainty in the response of transpiration to CO2 and implications for climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mengis, N.; Keller, D. P.; Eby, M.; Oschlies, A.

    2015-09-01

    While terrestrial precipitation is a societally highly relevant climate variable, there is little consensus among climate models about its projected 21st century changes. An important source of precipitable water over land is plant transpiration. Plants control transpiration by opening and closing their stomata. The sensitivity of this process to increasing CO2 concentrations is uncertain. To assess the impact of this uncertainty on future climate, we perform experiments with an intermediate complexity Earth System Climate Model (UVic ESCM) for a range of model-imposed transpiration-sensitivities to CO2. Changing the sensitivity of transpiration to CO2 causes simulated terrestrial precipitation to change by -10% to +27% by 2100 under a high emission scenario. This study emphasises the importance of an improved assessment of the dynamics of environmental impact on vegetation to better predict future changes of the terrestrial hydrological and carbon cycles.

  16. Decision-Making under Uncertainty for Water Sustainability and Urban Climate Change Adaptation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kelli L. Larson

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Complexities and uncertainties surrounding urbanization and climate change complicate water resource sustainability. Although research has examined various aspects of complex water systems, including uncertainties, relatively few attempts have been made to synthesize research findings in particular contexts. We fill this gap by examining the complexities, uncertainties, and decision processes for water sustainability and urban adaptation to climate change in the case study region of Phoenix, Arizona. In doing so, we integrate over a decade of research conducted by Arizona State University’s Decision Center for a Desert City (DCDC. DCDC is a boundary organization that conducts research in collaboration with policy makers, with the goal of informing decision-making under uncertainty. Our results highlight: the counterintuitive, non-linear, and competing relationships in human–environment dynamics; the myriad uncertainties in climatic, scientific, political, and other domains of knowledge and practice; and, the social learning that has occurred across science and policy spheres. Finally, we reflect on how our interdisciplinary research and boundary organization has evolved over time to enhance adaptive and sustainable governance in the face of complex system dynamics.

  17. Communicating Uncertainty about Climate Change for Application to Security Risk Management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gulledge, J. M.

    2011-12-01

    The science of climate change has convincingly demonstrated that human activities, including the release of greenhouse gases, land-surface changes, particle emissions, and redistribution of water, are changing global and regional climates. Consequently, key institutions are now concerned about the potential social impacts of climate change. For example, the 2010 Quadrennial Defense Review Report from the U.S. Department of Defense states that "climate change, energy security, and economic stability are inextricably linked." Meanwhile, insured losses from climate and weather-related natural disasters have risen dramatically over the past thirty years. Although these losses stem largely from socioeconomic trends, insurers are concerned that climate change could exacerbate this trend and render certain types of climate risk non-diversifiable. Meanwhile, the climate science community-broadly defined as physical, biological, and social scientists focused on some aspect of climate change-remains largely focused scholarly activities that are valued in the academy but not especially useful to decision makers. On the other hand, climate scientists who engage in policy discussions have generally permitted vested interests who support or oppose climate policies to frame the discussion of climate science within the policy arena. Such discussions focus on whether scientific uncertainties are sufficiently resolved to justify policy and the vested interests overstate or understate key uncertainties to support their own agendas. Consequently, the scientific community has become absorbed defending scientific findings to the near exclusion of developing novel tools to aid in risk-based decision-making. For example, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), established expressly for the purpose of informing governments, has largely been engaged in attempts to reduce unavoidable uncertainties rather than helping the world's governments define a science-based risk

  18. Optimal Technological Portfolios for Climate-Change Policy under Uncertainty: A Computable General Equilibrium Approach

    OpenAIRE

    David F. Bradford; Seung-Rae Kim; Klaus Keller

    2004-01-01

    When exploring solutions to long-term environmental problems such as climate change, it is crucial to understand how the rates and directions of technological change may interact with environmental policies in the presence of uncertainty. This paper analyzes optimal technological portfolios for global carbon emissions reductions in an integrated assessment model of the coupled social-natural system. The model used here is a probabilistic, two-technology extension of Nordhaus" earlier model (N...

  19. Revealing, Reducing, and Representing Uncertainties in New Hydrologic Projections for Climate-changed Futures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arnold, Jeffrey; Clark, Martyn; Gutmann, Ethan; Wood, Andy; Nijssen, Bart; Rasmussen, Roy

    2016-04-01

    The United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) has had primary responsibility for multi-purpose water resource operations on most of the major river systems in the U.S. for more than 200 years. In that time, the USACE projects and programs making up those operations have proved mostly robust against the range of natural climate variability encountered over their operating life spans. However, in some watersheds and for some variables, climate change now is known to be shifting the hydroclimatic baseline around which that natural variability occurs and changing the range of that variability as well. This makes historical stationarity an inappropriate basis for assessing continued project operations under climate-changed futures. That means new hydroclimatic projections are required at multiple scales to inform decisions about specific threats and impacts, and for possible adaptation responses to limit water-resource vulnerabilities and enhance operational resilience. However, projections of possible future hydroclimatologies have myriad complex uncertainties that require explicit guidance for interpreting and using them to inform those decisions about climate vulnerabilities and resilience. Moreover, many of these uncertainties overlap and interact. Recent work, for example, has shown the importance of assessing the uncertainties from multiple sources including: global model structure [Meehl et al., 2005; Knutti and Sedlacek, 2013]; internal climate variability [Deser et al., 2012; Kay et al., 2014]; climate downscaling methods [Gutmann et al., 2012; Mearns et al., 2013]; and hydrologic models [Addor et al., 2014; Vano et al., 2014; Mendoza et al., 2015]. Revealing, reducing, and representing these uncertainties is essential for defining the plausible quantitative climate change narratives required to inform water-resource decision-making. And to be useful, such quantitative narratives, or storylines, of climate change threats and hydrologic impacts must sample

  20. Landscape Conservation Cooperatives: Creating a Collaborative Conservation Vision in the Face of Climate Change Uncertainty

    Science.gov (United States)

    Athearn, N.; Schlafmann, D.

    2015-12-01

    The 22 Landscape Conservation Cooperatives (LCCs) form a "network of networks," each defined by the characteristics of its ecoregion and its unique community of conservation managers, practitioners, and scientists. As self-directed partnerships, LCCs are strongly influenced not only by the landscape but by the evolving cultures and values that define the multi-faceted relationships between people and place. LCCs maintain an ecologically connected network across these diverse landscapes by transcending borders and leveraging resources. Natural resource managers are challenged to make decisions in the face of multiple uncertainties, and several partners across the network have recognized that climate change is one important uncertainty that spans boundaries - both across the conservation community and beyond. The impacts of climate change across the LCC Network are likely to be as diverse as the network itself - manifesting as, for example, sea level rise, ocean acidification, loss of sea ice, and shifts in climate patterns and timing - but synergies are being leveraged within and between LCCs and national climate-focused programs to systematically address the needs of the network to support a collaborative conservation vision that addresses multiple landscape-scale stressors in the face of climate uncertainties. This vision is being achieved by leveraging the convening power of the LCCs and collaborating with DOI Climate Science Centers and others. Selected case studies will demonstrate how the network finds strength in its differences, but also reveals powerful collaborative opportunities through integrated science, shared conservation strategies, and strategic approaches for translating targeted science to conservation action. These examples exemplify past successes as well as ongoing efforts as the network continues to bring about effective application of climate science to achieve conservation outcomes across the LCC Network in an uncertain future climate.

  1. On the uncertainty of phenological responses to climate change and its implication for terrestrial biosphere models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Migliavacca

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Phenology, the timing of recurring life cycle events, controls numerous land surface feedbacks to the climate systems through the regulation of exchanges of carbon, water and energy between the biosphere and atmosphere. Land surface models, however, are known to have systematic errors in the simulation of spring phenology, which potentially could propagate to uncertainty in modeled responses to future climate change. Here, we analyzed the Harvard Forest phenology record to investigate and characterize the sources of uncertainty in phenological forecasts and the subsequent impacts on model forecasts of carbon and water cycling in the future. Using a model-data fusion approach, we combined information from 20 yr of phenological observations of 11 North American woody species with 12 phenological models of different complexity to predict leaf bud-burst.

    The evaluation of different phenological models indicated support for spring warming models with photoperiod limitations and, though to a lesser extent, to chilling models based on the alternating model structure.

    We assessed three different sources of uncertainty in phenological forecasts: parameter uncertainty, model uncertainty, and driver uncertainty. The latter was characterized running the models to 2099 using 2 different IPCC climate scenarios (A1fi vs. B1, i.e. high CO2 emissions vs. low CO2 emissions scenario. Parameter uncertainty was the smallest (average 95% CI: 2.4 day century−1 for scenario B1 and 4.5 day century−1 for A1fi, whereas driver uncertainty was the largest (up to 8.4 day century−1 in the simulated trends. The uncertainty related to model structure is also large and the predicted bud-burst trends as well as the shape of the smoothed projections varied somewhat among models (±7.7 day century−1 for A1fi, ±3.6 day century−1 for B1. The forecast sensitivity of bud-burst to

  2. Creating dialogue: a workshop on "Uncertainty in Decision Making in a Changing Climate"

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ewen, Tracy; Addor, Nans; Johnson, Leigh; Coltekin, Arzu; Derungs, Curdin; Muccione, Veruska

    2014-05-01

    Uncertainty is present in all fields of climate research, spanning from projections of future climate change, to assessing regional impacts and vulnerabilities, to adaptation policy and decision-making. In addition to uncertainties, managers and planners in many sectors are often confronted with large amounts of information from climate change research whose complex and interdisciplinary nature make it challenging to incorporate into the decision-making process. An overarching issue in tackling this problem is the lack of institutionalized dialogue between climate researchers, decision-makers and user groups. Forums that facilitate such dialogue would allow climate researchers to actively engage with end-users and researchers in different disciplines to better characterize uncertainties and ultimately understand which ones are critically considered and incorporated into decisions made. We propose that the introduction of students to these challenges at an early stage of their education and career is a first step towards improving future dialogue between climate researchers, decision-makers and user groups. To this end, we organized a workshop at the University of Zurich, Switzerland, entitled "Uncertainty in Decision Making in a Changing Climate". It brought together 50 participants, including Bachelor, Master and PhD students and academic staff, and nine selected speakers from academia, industry, government, and philanthropy. Speakers introduced participants to topics ranging from uncertainties in climate model scenarios to managing uncertainties in development and aid agencies. The workshop consisted of experts' presentations, a panel discussion and student group work on case studies. Pedagogical goals included i) providing participants with an overview of the current research on uncertainty and on how uncertainty is dealt with by decision-makers, ii) fostering exchange between practitioners, students, and scientists from different backgrounds, iii) exposing

  3. Climate change impacts on groundwater hydrology – where are the main uncertainties and can they be reduced?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Refsgaard, Jens C.; Sonnenborg, Torben; Butts, Michael;

    2016-01-01

    This paper assesses how various sources of uncertainty propagate through the uncertainty cascade from emission scenarios through climate models and hydrological models to impacts with particular focus on groundwater aspects for a number of coordinated studies in Denmark. We find results similar...... to surface water studies showing that climate model uncertainty dominates for projections of climate change impacts on streamflow and groundwater heads. However, we find uncertainties related to geological conceptualisation and hydrological model discretisation to be dominating for projections of well field...... climate-hydrology models....

  4. On the uncertainty of phenological responses to climate change, and implications for a terrestrial biosphere model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Migliavacca

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Phenology, the timing of recurring life cycle events, controls numerous land surface feedbacks to the climate system through the regulation of exchanges of carbon, water and energy between the biosphere and atmosphere.

    Terrestrial biosphere models, however, are known to have systematic errors in the simulation of spring phenology, which potentially could propagate to uncertainty in modeled responses to future climate change. Here, we used the Harvard Forest phenology record to investigate and characterize sources of uncertainty in predicting phenology, and the subsequent impacts on model forecasts of carbon and water cycling. Using a model-data fusion approach, we combined information from 20 yr of phenological observations of 11 North American woody species, with 12 leaf bud-burst models that varied in complexity.

    Akaike's Information Criterion indicated support for spring warming models with photoperiod limitations and, to a lesser extent, models that included chilling requirements.

    We assessed three different sources of uncertainty in phenological forecasts: parameter uncertainty, model uncertainty, and driver uncertainty. The latter was characterized running the models to 2099 using 2 different IPCC climate scenarios (A1fi vs. B1, i.e. high CO2 emissions vs. low CO2 emissions scenario. Parameter uncertainty was the smallest (average 95% Confidence Interval – CI: 2.4 days century−1 for scenario B1 and 4.5 days century−1 for A1fi, whereas driver uncertainty was the largest (up to 8.4 days century−1 in the simulated trends. The uncertainty related to model structure is also large and the predicted bud-burst trends as well as the shape of the smoothed projections varied among models (±7.7 days century−1 for A1fi, ±3.6 days century−1 for B1. The forecast sensitivity of bud-burst to temperature (i.e. days bud-burst advanced per

  5. How to deal with climate change uncertainty in the planning of engineering systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spackova, Olga; Dittes, Beatrice; Straub, Daniel

    2016-04-01

    The effect of extreme events such as floods on the infrastructure and built environment is associated with significant uncertainties: These include the uncertain effect of climate change, uncertainty on extreme event frequency estimation due to limited historic data and imperfect models, and, not least, uncertainty on future socio-economic developments, which determine the damage potential. One option for dealing with these uncertainties is the use of adaptable (flexible) infrastructure that can easily be adjusted in the future without excessive costs. The challenge is in quantifying the value of adaptability and in finding the optimal sequence of decision. Is it worth to build a (potentially more expensive) adaptable system that can be adjusted in the future depending on the future conditions? Or is it more cost-effective to make a conservative design without counting with the possible future changes to the system? What is the optimal timing of the decision to build/adjust the system? We develop a quantitative decision-support framework for evaluation of alternative infrastructure designs under uncertainties, which: • probabilistically models the uncertain future (trough a Bayesian approach) • includes the adaptability of the systems (the costs of future changes) • takes into account the fact that future decisions will be made under uncertainty as well (using pre-posterior decision analysis) • allows to identify the optimal capacity and optimal timing to build/adjust the infrastructure. Application of the decision framework will be demonstrated on an example of flood mitigation planning in Bavaria.

  6. Assessing risks and uncertainties in forest dynamics under different management scenarios and climate change

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Matthias; Albert; Jan; Hansen; Jürgen; Nagel; Matthias; Schmidt; Hermann; Spellmann

    2015-01-01

    Background: Forest management faces a climate induced shift in growth potential and increasing current and emerging new risks. Vulnerability analysis provides decision support based on projections of natural resources taking risks and uncertainties into account. In this paper we(1) characterize differences in forest dynamics under three management scenarios,(2) analyse the effects of the three scenarios on two risk factors, windthrow and drought stress, and(3) quantify the effects and the amount of uncertainty arising from climate projections on height increment and drought stress.Methods: In four regions in northern Germany, we apply three contrasting management scenarios and project forest development under climate change until 2070. Three climate runs(minimum, median, maximum) based on the emission scenario RCP 8.5 control the site-sensitive forest growth functions. The minimum and maximum climate run define the range of prospective climate development.Results: The projections of different management regimes until 2070 show the diverging medium-term effects of thinnings and harvests and long-term effects of species conversion on a regional scale. Examples of windthrow vulnerability and drought stress reveal how adaptation measures depend on the applied management path and the decision-maker’s risk attitude. Uncertainty analysis shows the increasing variability of drought risk projections with time. The effect of climate projections on height growth are quantified and uncertainty analysis reveals that height growth of young trees is dominated by the age-trend whereas the climate signal in height increment of older trees is decisive.Conclusions: Drought risk is a serious issue in the eastern regions independent of the applied silvicultural scenario,but adaptation measures are limited as the proportion of the most drought tolerant species Scots pine is already high. Windthrow risk is no serious overall threat in any region, but adequate counter-measures such as

  7. Large storage operations under climate change: expanding uncertainties and evolving tradeoffs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giuliani, Matteo; Anghileri, Daniela; Castelletti, Andrea; Vu, Phuong Nam; Soncini-Sessa, Rodolfo

    2016-03-01

    In a changing climate and society, large storage systems can play a key role for securing water, energy, and food, and rebalancing their cross-dependencies. In this letter, we study the role of large storage operations as flexible means of adaptation to climate change. In particular, we explore the impacts of different climate projections for different future time horizons on the multi-purpose operations of the existing system of large dams in the Red River basin (China-Laos-Vietnam). We identify the main vulnerabilities of current system operations, understand the risk of failure across sectors by exploring the evolution of the system tradeoffs, quantify how the uncertainty associated to climate scenarios is expanded by the storage operations, and assess the expected costs if no adaptation is implemented. Results show that, depending on the climate scenario and the time horizon considered, the existing operations are predicted to change on average from -7 to +5% in hydropower production, +35 to +520% in flood damages, and +15 to +160% in water supply deficit. These negative impacts can be partially mitigated by adapting the existing operations to future climate, reducing the loss of hydropower to 5%, potentially saving around 34.4 million US year-1 at the national scale. Since the Red River is paradigmatic of many river basins across south east Asia, where new large dams are under construction or are planned to support fast growing economies, our results can support policy makers in prioritizing responses and adaptation strategies to the changing climate.

  8. Uncertainty of downscaling method in quantifying the impact of climate change on hydrology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Jie; Brissette, François P.; Leconte, Robert

    2011-05-01

    SummaryUncertainty estimation of climate change impacts has been given a lot of attention in the recent literature. It is generally assumed that the major sources of uncertainty are linked to General Circulation Models (GCMs) and Greenhouse Gases Emissions Scenarios (GGES). However, other sources of uncertainty such as the choice of a downscaling method have been given less attention. This paper focuses on this issue by comparing six downscaling methods to investigate the uncertainties in quantifying the impacts of climate change on the hydrology of a Canadian (Quebec province) river basin. The downscaling methods regroup dynamical and statistical approaches, including the change factor method and a weather generator-based approach. Future (2070-2099, 2085 horizon) hydrological regimes simulated with a hydrological model are compared to the reference period (1970-1999) using the average hydrograph, annual mean discharge, peak discharge and time to peak discharge as criteria. The results show that all downscaling methods suggest temperature increases over the basin for the 2085 horizon. The regression-based statistical methods predict a larger increase in autumn and winter temperatures. Predicted changes in precipitation are not as unequivocal as those of temperatures, they vary depending on the downscaling methods and seasons. There is a general increase in winter discharge (November-April) while decreases in summer discharge are predicted by most methods. Consistently with the large predicted increases in autumn and winter temperature, regression-based statistical methods show severe increases in winter flows and considerable reductions in peak discharge. Across all variables, a large uncertainty envelope was found to be associated with the choice of a downscaling method. This envelope was compared to the envelope originating from the choice of 28 climate change projections from a combination of seven GCMs and three GGES. Both uncertainty envelopes were similar

  9. Climate change adaptation accounting for huge uncertainties in future projections - the case of urban drainage

    Science.gov (United States)

    Willems, Patrick

    2015-04-01

    Hydrological design parameters, which are currently used in the guidelines for the design of urban drainage systems (Willems et al., 2013) have been revised, taking the Flanders region of Belgium as case study. The revision involved extrapolation of the design rainfall statistics, taking into account the current knowledge on future climate change trends till 2100. Uncertainties in these trend projections have been assessed after statistically analysing and downscaling by a quantile perturbation tool based on a broad ensemble set of climate model simulation results (44 regional + 69 global control-scenario climate model run combinations for different greenhouse gas scenarios). The impact results of the climate scenarios were investigated as changes to rainfall intensity-duration-frequency (IDF) curves. Thereafter, the climate scenarios and related changes in rainfall statistics were transferred to changes in flood frequencies of sewer systems and overflow frequencies of storage facilities. This has been done based on conceptual urban drainage models. Also the change in storage capacity required to exceed a given overflow return period, has been calculated for a range of return periods and infiltration or throughflow rates. These results were used on the basis of the revision of the hydraulic design rules of urban drainage systems. One of the major challenges while formulating these policy guidelines was the consideration of the huge uncertainties in the future climate change projections and impact assessments; see also the difficulties and pitfalls reported by the IWA/IAHR Joint Committee on Urban Drainage - Working group on urban rainfall (Willems et al., 2012). We made use of the risk concept, and found it a very useful approach to deal with the high uncertainties. It involves an impact study of the different climate projections, or - for practical reasons - a reduced set of climate scenarios tailored for the specific type of impact considered (urban floods in our

  10. Adapting to climate change despite scientific uncertainty: A case study of coastal protection from sea-level rise in Kiribati

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donner, S. D.

    2013-12-01

    Climate change adaptation is an increasing focus of international aid. At recent meetings of the parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), the developed world agreed to rapidly increase international assistance to help developing countries, like the low-lying island nation of Kiribati, respond to the impacts of climate change. These emerging adaptation efforts must proceed despite the large and partially irreducible scientific uncertainty about the magnitude of those future climate impacts. In this study, we use the example of efforts to adapt to sea-level rise in Kiribati to document the challenges facing such internationally-funded climate change adaptation projects given the scientific uncertainty about climate impacts. Drawing on field and document research, we describe the scientific uncertainty about projected sea-level rise in Tarawa, the capital of Kiribati, how that uncertainty can create trade-offs between adaptation measures, and the social, political and economic context in which adaptation decisions must be made. The analysis shows there is no 'silver bullet' adaptation strategy in countries like Kiribati, given the long-term scientific uncertainty about sea-level rise and the environment of climate change aid. The existence of irreducible scientific uncertainty does not preclude effective climate change adaptation, but instead requires adaptation programs that embrace multiple strategies and planning horizons, and continually build on and re-adjust previous investments. This work highlights the importance of sustained international climate change financing, as proposed in UNFCCC negotiations.

  11. Uncertainties in assessing climate change impacts on the hydrology of Mediterranean basins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ludwig, Ralf

    2013-04-01

    There is substantial evidence in historical and recent observations that the Mediterranean and neighboring regions are especially vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. Numerous climate projections, stemming from ensembles of global and regional climate models, agree on severe changes in the climate forcing which are likely to exacerbate subsequent ecological, economic and social impacts. Many of these causal connections are closely linked to the general expectation that water availability will decline in the already water-stressed basins of Africa, the Mediterranean region and the Near East, even though considerable regional variances must be expected. Consequently, climate change impacts on water resources are raising concerns regarding their possible management and security implications. Decreasing access to water resources and other related factors could be a cause or a 'multiplier' of tensions within and between countries. Whether security threats arise from climate impacts or options for cooperation evolve does not depend only on the severity of the impacts themselves, but on social, economic, and institutional vulnerabilities or resilience as well as factors that influence local, national and international relations. However, an assessment of vulnerability and risks hinges on natural, socio-economic, and political conditions and responses, all of which are uncertain. Multidisciplinary research is needed to tackle the multi-facet complexity of climate change impacts on water resources in the Mediterranean and neighboring countries. This is particularly true in a region of overall data scarcity and poor data management and exchange structures. The current potential to develop appropriate regional adaptation measures towards climate change impacts suffers heavily from large uncertainties. These spread along a long chain of components, starting from the definition of emission scenarios to global and regional climate modeling to impact models and a

  12. An Inconvenient Deliberation. The Precautionary Principle's Contribution to the Uncertainties Surrounding Climate Change Liability

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    There is increasing evidence to suggest that adaptation to the inevitable is as relevant to climate change policymaking as mitigation efforts. Both mitigation and adaptation, as well as the unavoidable damage occurring both now and that is predicted to occur, all involve costs at the expense of diverse climate change victims. The allocation of responsibilities - implicit in terms of the burden-sharing mechanisms that currently exist in public and private governance - demands recourse under liability law, especially as it has become clear that most companies will only start reducing emissions if verifiable costs of the economic consequences of climate change, including the likelihood of liability, outweigh the costs of taking precautionary measures. This vitally important book asks: Can the precautionary principle make uncertainty judiciable in the context of liability for the consequences of climate change, and, if so, to what extent? Drawing on the full range of pertinent existing literature and case law, the author examines the precautionary principle both in terms of its content and application and in the context of liability law. She analyses the indirect means offered by existing legislation being used by environmental groups and affected individuals before the courts to challenge both companies and regulators as responsible agents of climate change damage. In the process of responding to its fundamental question, the analysis explores such further questions as the following: (a) What is the role of the precautionary principle in resolving uncertainty in scientific risk assessment when faced with inconclusive evidence, and how does it affect decision-making, particularly in the regulatory choices concerning climate change? To this end, what is the concrete content of the precautionary principle?; (b) How does liability law generally handle scientific uncertainty? What different types of liability exist, and how are they equipped to handle a climate change

  13. The MIT IGSM-CAM framework for uncertainty studies in global and regional climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monier, E.; Scott, J. R.; Sokolov, A. P.; Forest, C. E.; Schlosser, C. A.

    2011-12-01

    The MIT Integrated Global System Model (IGSM) version 2.3 is an intermediate complexity fully coupled earth system model that allows simulation of critical feedbacks among its various components, including the atmosphere, ocean, land, urban processes and human activities. A fundamental feature of the IGSM2.3 is the ability to modify its climate parameters: climate sensitivity, net aerosol forcing and ocean heat uptake rate. As such, the IGSM2.3 provides an efficient tool for generating probabilistic distribution functions of climate parameters using optimal fingerprint diagnostics. A limitation of the IGSM2.3 is its zonal-mean atmosphere model that does not permit regional climate studies. For this reason, the MIT IGSM2.3 was linked to the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) Community Atmosphere Model (CAM) version 3 and new modules were developed and implemented in CAM in order to modify its climate sensitivity and net aerosol forcing to match that of the IGSM. The IGSM-CAM provides an efficient and innovative framework to study regional climate change where climate parameters can be modified to span the range of uncertainty and various emissions scenarios can be tested. This paper presents results from the cloud radiative adjustment method used to modify CAM's climate sensitivity. We also show results from 21st century simulations based on two emissions scenarios (a median "business as usual" scenario where no policy is implemented after 2012 and a policy scenario where greenhouse-gas are stabilized at 660 ppm CO2-equivalent concentrations by 2100) and three sets of climate parameters. The three values of climate sensitivity chosen are median and the bounds of the 90% probability interval of the probability distribution obtained by comparing the observed 20th century climate change with simulations by the IGSM with a wide range of climate parameters values. The associated aerosol forcing values were chosen to ensure a good agreement of the simulations

  14. Uncertainty of biomass contributions from agriculture and forestry to renewable energy resources under climate change

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Gutsch

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available In the future, Germany's land-use policies and the impacts of climate change on yields will affect the amount of biomass available for energy production. We used recent published data on biomass potentials in the federal states of Germany to assess the uncertainty caused by climate change effects in the potential supply of biomass available for energy production. In this study we selected three climate scenarios representing the maximum, mean and minimum temperature increase for Germany out of 21 CMIP5-projections driven by the Representative Concentration Pathways (RCP 8.5 scenario. Each of the three selected projections was downscaled using the regional statistical climate model STARS. We analysed the yield changes of four biomass feedstock crops (forest, short-rotation coppices (SRC, cereal straw (winter wheat and energy maize for the period 2031–2060 in comparison to 1981–2010. The mean annual yield changes of energy wood from forest and short-rotation coppices were modelled using the process-based forest growth model 4C. The yield changes of winter wheat and energy maize from agricultural production were simulated with the statistical yield model IRMA. Germany's annual biomass potential of 1500 PJ varies between minus 5 % and plus 8 % depending on the climate scenario realisation. Assuming that 1500 PJ of biomass utilisation can be achieved, climate change effects of minus 75 (5 % PJ or plus 120 (8 % PJ do not impede overall bioenergy targets of 1287 PJ in 2020 and 1534 PJ in 2050. In five federal states the climate scenarios lead to decreasing yields of energy maize and winter wheat. Impacts of climate scenarios on forest yields are mainly positive and show both positive and negative effects on yields of SRC.

  15. Probabilistic accounting of uncertainty in forecasts of species distributions under climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wenger, Seth J.; Som, Nicholas A.; Dauwalter, Daniel C.; Isaak, Daniel J.; Neville, Helen M.; Luce, Charles H.; Dunham, Jason B.; Young, Michael K.; Fausch, Kurt D.; Rieman, Bruce E.

    2013-01-01

    Forecasts of species distributions under future climates are inherently uncertain, but there have been few attempts to describe this uncertainty comprehensively in a probabilistic manner. We developed a Monte Carlo approach that accounts for uncertainty within generalized linear regression models (parameter uncertainty and residual error), uncertainty among competing models (model uncertainty), and uncertainty in future climate conditions (climate uncertainty) to produce site-specific frequency distributions of occurrence probabilities across a species’ range. We illustrated the method by forecasting suitable habitat for bull trout (Salvelinus confluentus) in the Interior Columbia River Basin, USA, under recent and projected 2040s and 2080s climate conditions. The 95% interval of total suitable habitat under recent conditions was estimated at 30.1–42.5 thousand km; this was predicted to decline to 0.5–7.9 thousand km by the 2080s. Projections for the 2080s showed that the great majority of stream segments would be unsuitable with high certainty, regardless of the climate data set or bull trout model employed. The largest contributor to uncertainty in total suitable habitat was climate uncertainty, followed by parameter uncertainty and model uncertainty. Our approach makes it possible to calculate a full distribution of possible outcomes for a species, and permits ready graphical display of uncertainty for individual locations and of total habitat.

  16. Climate change and climate uncertainty in the Murray-Darling Basin

    OpenAIRE

    Adamson, David; Mallawaarachchi, Thilak; Quiggin, John

    2007-01-01

    Human activity has modified the environment at all scales from the smallest ecosystems to the global climate systems. In the analysis of the Murray-Darling Basin, it is necessary to take account of effects of human activity ranging from local changes in water tables and soil structure through basin-level effects of the expansion of irrigation to changes in precipitation pattern arising from the accumulation of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. In this paper, we analyse the impact of, and ad...

  17. Accounting for adaptive capacity and uncertainty in assessments of species’ climate-change vulnerability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wade, Alisa A.; Hand, Brian K.; Kovach, Ryan; Luikart, Gordon; Whited, Diane; Muhlfeld, Clint C.

    2016-01-01

    Climate change vulnerability assessments (CCVAs) are valuable tools for assessing species’ vulnerability to climatic changes, yet failure to include measures of adaptive capacity and to account for sources of uncertainty may limit their effectiveness. Here, we provide a more comprehensive CCVA approach that incorporates all three elements used for assessing species’ climate change vulnerability: exposure, sensitivity, and adaptive capacity. We illustrate our approach using case studies of two threatened salmonids with different life histories – anadromous steelhead trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) and non-anadromous bull trout (Salvelinus confluentus) – within the Columbia River Basin, USA. We identified general patterns of high vulnerability in low-elevation and southernmost habitats for both species. However, vulnerability rankings varied widely depending on the factors (climate, habitat, demographic, and genetic) included in the CCVA and often differed for the two species at locations where they were sympatric. Our findings illustrate that CCVA results are highly sensitive to data inputs and that spatial differences can complicate multi-species conservation. Our results highlight how CCVAs should be considered within a broader conceptual and computational framework for refining hypotheses, guiding research, and comparing plausible scenarios of species’ vulnerability for ongoing and projected climate change.

  18. Modeling Uncertainty and the Economics of Climate Change. Recommendations for Robust Energy Policy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This special issue is meant to gather front-edge research and innovative analysis in the modeling of uncertainty related to the economics of climate change. The focus is notably on advancements in probabilistic integrated assessment modeling and stochastic analysis of climate futures. The possibility to use non-probabilistic economic methods to treat uncertainty in global or regional dynamic climate change models is explored as well. Given the intimate link between climate change and the nature of mankind's energy production and consumption system, this special issue also proffers direct practical recommendations for energy decision making at the global, regional, and national levels. The special issue originated from a series of research tasks carried out under the PLANETS project, funded by the European Commission under its 7th Framework Programme and co-coordinated by the Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei (FEEM) and the Energy research Centre of the Netherlands (ECN). This project, accomplished in 2010, had, as main focus, how to incorporate uncertainty when carrying out numerical analysis of climate and energy policies. A special PLANETS session was organized during the 2010 edition of the International Energy Workshop (IEW 2010, Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm), which generated broad expert discussion on both methodology and policy-related issues. The recognition of the importance of these topics and the diversity of approaches undertaken, plus a concern over them becoming fragmented in the literature, constituted the motivation to edit this special issue gathering the generated material in one orchestrated publication. Several contributions, in the form of 12 papers, have been brought together with the aim of providing a comprehensive overview of some of the main recent developments in the modeling of uncertainty in the economics of climate change. We categorize these 12 articles in five distinct domains in hybrid integrated assessment EEE (Energy

  19. Ensemble simulation and uncertainty estimation - Mountain soil moisture variability under climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rössler, O.; Diekkrüger, B.; Löffler, J.

    2012-04-01

    Climate change impact assessment studies (CCIAS) are a common approach and many publications on hydrological responses to climate change have been published. Nonetheless, CCIAS focusing on soil moisture are widely missing especially at the catchment scale where adaptation strategies are readily viable. The wide neglect of soil moisture in CCIAS contrasts its key role in the ecosystems. We conducted the CCIA in a high mountain catchment (160 km2) in the Swiss Alps at a high spatial resolution (50m). The impact of climate change on mountain soil moisture were simulated by applying three different downscaling approaches (statistical downscaling, delta change, and direct forcing) and two RCMs (CHRM, and REMO-UBA) to drive a distributed, physically-based hydrological model (WaSiM-ETH) for a reference (1960-1990) and a scenario period (2070-2100). We estimated the uncertainties originating from either the hydrological model or a downscaling approach by comparing the model outputs with observations from discharge and soil moisture measurements and a reference run based on meteorological observations, respectively. While WaSiM-ETH was able to reproduce discharge with a high accuracy (R2 = 0.95, ME = 0.8, IoA = 0.95), the simulation of soil moisture for different altitudes and land use types was partly limited, since the model was unable to model the total variability of the soil moisture dynamic, but tends to mean values. Uncertainties were found to be unsteadily distributed, both in terms of variables and time. We showed that the choice of downscaling approaches is of circumstantial relevance for discharge and water balance, while for all spatial variables, we found statistical downscaling approaches to perform better than a direct use of RCM data. Finally, we simulated the impact of climate change on soil moisture using all six downscaled climate data at a daily temporal resolution. The consensus of six models driven by two threefold downscaled RCMs revealed the forested

  20. Uncertainty in climate science and climate policy

    CERN Document Server

    Rougier, Jonathan

    2014-01-01

    This essay, written by a statistician and a climate scientist, describes our view of the gap that exists between current practice in mainstream climate science, and the practical needs of policymakers charged with exploring possible interventions in the context of climate change. By `mainstream' we mean the type of climate science that dominates in universities and research centres, which we will term `academic' climate science, in contrast to `policy' climate science; aspects of this distinction will become clearer in what follows. In a nutshell, we do not think that academic climate science equips climate scientists to be as helpful as they might be, when involved in climate policy assessment. Partly, we attribute this to an over-investment in high resolution climate simulators, and partly to a culture that is uncomfortable with the inherently subjective nature of climate uncertainty.

  1. Climate change - An uncertainty factor in risk analysis of contaminated land.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Augustsson, Anna; Filipsson, Monika; Oberg, Tomas; Bergbäck, Bo

    2011-10-15

    Metals frequently occur at contaminated sites, where their potential toxicity and persistence require risk assessments that consider possible long-term changes. Changes in climate are likely to affect the speciation, mobility, and risks associated with metals. This paper provides an example of how the climate effect can be inserted in a commonly used exposure model, and how the exposure then changes compared to present conditions. The comparison was made for cadmium (Cd) exposure to 4-year-old children at a highly contaminated iron and steel works site in southeastern Sweden. Both deterministic and probabilistic approaches (through probability bounds analysis, PBA) were used in the exposure assessment. Potential climate-sensitive variables were determined by a literature review. Although only six of the total 39 model variables were assumed to be sensitive to a change in climate (groundwater infiltration, hydraulic conductivity, soil moisture, soil:water distribution, and two bioconcentration factors), the total exposure was clearly affected. For example, by altering the climate-sensitive variables in the order of 15% to 20%, the deterministic estimate of exposure increased by 27%. Similarly, the PBA estimate of the reasonable maximum exposure (RME, defined as the upper bound of the 95th percentile) increased by almost 20%. This means that sites where the exposure in present conditions is determined to be slightly below guideline values may in the future exceed these guidelines, and risk management decisions could thus be affected. The PBA, however, showed that there is also a possibility of lower exposure levels, which means that the changes assumed for the climate-sensitive variables increase the total uncertainty in the probabilistic calculations. This highlights the importance of considering climate as a factor in the characterization of input data to exposure assessments at contaminated sites. The variable with the strongest influence on the result was the

  2. Climate change - An uncertainty factor in risk analysis of contaminated land.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Augustsson, Anna; Filipsson, Monika; Oberg, Tomas; Bergbäck, Bo

    2011-10-15

    Metals frequently occur at contaminated sites, where their potential toxicity and persistence require risk assessments that consider possible long-term changes. Changes in climate are likely to affect the speciation, mobility, and risks associated with metals. This paper provides an example of how the climate effect can be inserted in a commonly used exposure model, and how the exposure then changes compared to present conditions. The comparison was made for cadmium (Cd) exposure to 4-year-old children at a highly contaminated iron and steel works site in southeastern Sweden. Both deterministic and probabilistic approaches (through probability bounds analysis, PBA) were used in the exposure assessment. Potential climate-sensitive variables were determined by a literature review. Although only six of the total 39 model variables were assumed to be sensitive to a change in climate (groundwater infiltration, hydraulic conductivity, soil moisture, soil:water distribution, and two bioconcentration factors), the total exposure was clearly affected. For example, by altering the climate-sensitive variables in the order of 15% to 20%, the deterministic estimate of exposure increased by 27%. Similarly, the PBA estimate of the reasonable maximum exposure (RME, defined as the upper bound of the 95th percentile) increased by almost 20%. This means that sites where the exposure in present conditions is determined to be slightly below guideline values may in the future exceed these guidelines, and risk management decisions could thus be affected. The PBA, however, showed that there is also a possibility of lower exposure levels, which means that the changes assumed for the climate-sensitive variables increase the total uncertainty in the probabilistic calculations. This highlights the importance of considering climate as a factor in the characterization of input data to exposure assessments at contaminated sites. The variable with the strongest influence on the result was the

  3. Uncertainty of tipping elements on risk analysis in hydrology under climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kiguchi, M.; Iseri, Y.; Tawatari, R.; Kanae, S.; Oki, T.

    2015-12-01

    Risk analysis in this study characterizes the events that could be caused by climate change and estimates their effects on society. In order to characterize climate change risks, events that might be caused by climate change will be investigated focusing on critical geophysical phenomena such as changes in thermohaline circulation (THC) in oceans and the large-scale melting of the Greenland and other ice sheets. The results of numerical experiments with climate models and paleoclimate studies will be referenced in listing up these phenomena. The trigger mechanisms, tendency to occur and relationship of these phenomena to global climate will be clarified. To clarify that relationship between the RCP scenarios and tipping elements, we identified which year tipping elements in case of "Arctic summer sea ice" and "Greenland ice sheet" are appeared using the increase of global average temperature in 5 GCMs under RCP (2.6, 4.5, 6.0, and 8.5) from Zickfeld et al. (2013) and IPCC (2013), and tipping point of each tipping elements from IPCC (2013). In case of "Greenland ice sheet" (Tipping point takes a value within the range of 1.0oC and 4.0oC), we found that "Greenland ice sheet" may melt down when the tipping point is 1.0oC as lowest value. On the other hand, when tipping point sets as 4.0oC, it may not melt down except for RCP 8.5. As above, we show the uncertainty of tipping point itself. In future, it is necessary how to reflect such uncertainty in risk analysis in hydrology.

  4. Impact of climate change on the vegetation cycle over France and the associated uncertainties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calvet, Jean-Christophe; Laanaia, Nabil; Carrer, Dominique

    2016-04-01

    Climate is traditionally characterized by atmospheric variables such as air temperature. In the context of climate change it is important to consider, also, terrestrial variables more directly linked to life, such as the above-ground biomass of vegetation or soil moisture. The ISBA (Interactions between Soil, Biosphere and Atmosphere) model is developed by Meteo-France and is used in the CNRM APREGE climate model through the SURFEX surface modelling platform. ISBA is also used in many European atmospheric and hydrological models to simulate the water and energy fluxes on a sub-hourly basis. This model is able to simulate photosynthesis, plant growth, and carbon storage into soils. ISBA is a generic model able to represent the main vegetation types using a limited number of parameters. In this study, ISBA was forced by the atmospheric variables produced by different climate models. An ensemble of eleven downscaled climatic simulations was used to characterize consistent future trends over France. The simulations covered 150 years from 1950 to 2099. Two time horizons 2020-2049 (near future) and 2070-2099 (distant future) were compared to the 1970-1999 period. Four vegetation types (rainfed straw cereals and grasslands, broadleaf and coniferous forests) were considered. The leaf area index simulations were used to determine phenology variables (leaf onset, leaf offset). A statistical analysis permitted quantifying the impact of climate change and to show whether the future trends were significant or not. The uncertainties related to these trends were characterized. A spatial classification method was developed in order to map the spatial variability of the impact of climate change. An earlier leaf onset was simulated for all the vegetation types, everywhere in France. The CO2 effect triggered a slight increase in the productivity of grasslands (first cut) and of straw cereals. On the other hand, the forest productivity displayed high uncertainties as it was very

  5. Water quality under increased biofuel production and future climate change and uncertainty

    Science.gov (United States)

    Demissie, Y. K.; Yan, E.

    2015-12-01

    Over the past decade, biofuel has emerged as an important renewable energy source to supplement gasoline and reduce the associated greenhouse gas emission. Many countries, for instant, have adopted biofuel production goals to blend 10% or more of gasoline with biofuels within 10 to 20 years. However, meeting these goals requires sustainable production of biofuel feedstock which can be challenging under future change in climate and extreme weather conditions, as well as the likely impacts of biofuel feedstock production on water quality and availability. To understand this interrelationship and the combined effects of increased biofuel production and climate change on regional and local water resources, we have performed watershed hydrology and water quality analyses for the Ohio River Basin. The basin is one of the major biofuel feedstock producing region in the United States, which also currently contributes about half of the flow and one third of phosphorus and nitrogen loadings to the Mississippi River that eventually flows to the Gulf of Mexico. The analyses integrate future scenarios and climate change and biofuel development through various mixes of landuse and agricultural management changes and examine their potential impacts on regional and local hydrology, water quality, soil erosion, and agriculture productivity. The results of the study are expected to provide much needed insight about the sustainability of large-scale biofuel feedstock production under the future climate change and uncertainty, and helps to further optimize the feedstock production taking into consideration the water-use efficiency.

  6. Uncertainty in climate change impacts on water resources in the Rio Grande Basin, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. T. Nóbrega

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available We quantify uncertainty in the impacts of climate change on the discharge of Rio Grande, a major tributary of the Paraná River in South America and one of the most important basins in Brazil for water supply and hydro-electric power generation. We consider uncertainty in climate projections associated with the greenhouse-gas emission scenarios (A1b, A2, B1, B2 and increases in global mean air temperature of 1 to 6° C for the HadCM3 GCM (Global Circulation Model as well as uncertainties related to GCM structure. For the latter, multimodel runs using 6 GCMs (CCCMA CGCM31, CSIRO Mk30, IPSL CM4, MPI ECHAM5, NCAR CCSM30, UKMO HadGEM1 and HadCM3 as baseline, for a +2° C increase in global mean temperature. Pattern-scaled GCM-outputs are applied to a large-scale hydrological model (MGB-IPH of Rio Grande Basin. Based on simulations using HadCM3, mean annual river discharge increases, relative to the baseline or control run period (1961–1990, by +5% to +10% under the SRES emissions scenarios and from +8% to +51% with prescribed increases in global mean air temperature of between 1 and 6° C. Substantial uncertainty in projected changes to mean river discharge (−28% to +13% under the 2° C warming scenario is, however, associated with the choice of GCM. We conclude that, in the case of Rio Grande Basin, the most important source of uncertainty derives from the GCM rather than the emission scenario or the magnitude of rise in mean global temperature.

  7. Uncertainty in climate change impacts on water resources in the Rio Grande Basin, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. T. Nóbrega

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available We quantify uncertainty in the impacts of climate change on the discharge of the Rio Grande, a major tributary of the River Paraná in South America and one of the most important basins in Brazil for water supply and hydro-electric power generation. We consider uncertainty in climate projections associated with the SRES (greenhouse-gas emission scenarios (A1b, A2, B1, B2 and increases in global mean air temperature of 1 to 6 °C for the HadCM3 GCM as well as uncertainties related to GCM structure. For the latter, multimodel runs using 6 GCMs (CCCMA CGCM31, CSIRO Mk30, IPSL CM4, MPI ECHAM5, NCAR CCSM30, UKMO HadGEM1 and HadCM3 as baseline, for a + 2 °C increase in global mean temperature. Pattern-scaled GCM-outputs are applied to a large-scale hydrological model (MGB-IPH of the Rio Grande Basin. Based on simulations using HadCM3, mean annual river discharge increases, relative to the baseline period (1961–1990, by + 5% to + 10% under the SRES emissions scenarios and from + 8% to + 51% with prescribed increases in global mean air temperature of between 1 and 6 °C. Substantial uncertainty in projected changes to mean river discharge (− 28% to + 13% under the 2 °C warming scenario is, however, associated with the choice of GCM. We conclude that, in the case of the Rio Grande Basin, the most important source of uncertainty derives from the GCM rather than the emission scenario or the magnitude of rise in mean global temperature.

  8. Climate change uncertainty for daily minimum and maximum temperatures: a model inter-comparison

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lobell, D; Bonfils, C; Duffy, P

    2006-11-09

    Several impacts of climate change may depend more on changes in mean daily minimum (T{sub min}) or maximum (T{sub max}) temperatures than daily averages. To evaluate uncertainties in these variables, we compared projections of T{sub min} and T{sub max} changes by 2046-2065 for 12 climate models under an A2 emission scenario. Average modeled changes in T{sub max} were slightly lower in most locations than T{sub min}, consistent with historical trends exhibiting a reduction in diurnal temperature ranges. However, while average changes in T{sub min} and T{sub max} were similar, the inter-model variability of T{sub min} and T{sub max} projections exhibited substantial differences. For example, inter-model standard deviations of June-August T{sub max} changes were more than 50% greater than for T{sub min} throughout much of North America, Europe, and Asia. Model differences in cloud changes, which exert relatively greater influence on T{sub max} during summer and T{sub min} during winter, were identified as the main source of uncertainty disparities. These results highlight the importance of considering separately projections for T{sub max} and T{sub min} when assessing climate change impacts, even in cases where average projected changes are similar. In addition, impacts that are most sensitive to summertime T{sub min} or wintertime T{sub max} may be more predictable than suggested by analyses using only projections of daily average temperatures.

  9. Climate induced changes on the hydrology of Mediterranean basins - assessing uncertainties and quantifying risks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ludwig, Ralf

    2014-05-01

    According to current climate projections, the Mediterranean area is at high risk for severe changes in the hydrological budget and extremes. With innovative scientific measures, integrated hydrological modeling and novel field geophysical field monitoring techniques, the FP7 project CLIMB (Climate Induced Changes on the Hydrology of Mediterranean Basins; GA: 244151) assessed the impacts of climate change on the hydrology in seven basins in the Mediterranean area, in Italy, France, Turkey, Tunisia, Egypt and the Gaza Strip, and quantified uncertainties and risks for the main stakeholders of each test site. Intensive climate model auditing selected four regional climate models, whose data was bias corrected and downscaled to serve as climate forcing for a set of hydrological models in each site. The results of the multi-model hydro-climatic ensemble and socio-economic factor analysis were applied to develop a risk model building upon spatial vulnerability and risk assessment. Findings generally reveal an increasing risk for water resources management in the test sites, yet at different rates and severity in the investigated sectors, with highest impacts likely to occur in the transition months. Most important elements of this research include the following aspects: • Climate change contributes, yet in strong regional variation, to water scarcity in the Mediterranean; other factors, e.g. pollution or poor management practices, are regionally still dominant pressures on water resources. • Rain-fed agriculture needs to adapt to seasonal changes; stable or increasing productivity likely depends on additional irrigation. • Tourism could benefit in shoulder seasons, but may expect income losses in the summer peak season due to increasing heat stress. • Local & regional water managers and water users, lack, as yet, awareness of climate change induced risks; emerging focus areas are supplies of domestic drinking water, irrigation, hydropower and livestock. • Data

  10. Investigating uncertainty of climate change effect on entering runoff to Urmia Lake Iran

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. Razmara

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available The largest lake in Iran, Urmia Lake, has been faced with a sharp decline in water surface in recent years. This decline is putting the survival of Urmia Lake at risk. Due to the fact that the water surface of lakes is affected directly by the entering runoff, herein we study the effect of climate change on the runoff entering Urmia Lake. Ten climate models among AOGCM-AR4 models in the future time period 2013–2040 will be used, under the emission scenarios A2 and B1. The downscaling method used in this research is the change factor-LARS method, while for simulating the runoff, the artificial neural network was applied. First, both the 30-yr and monthly scenarios of climate change, temperature, and precipitation of the region were generated and weighted by the Beta function (β. Then, the cumulative density function (cdf for each month was computed. Calculating the scenarios of climate change and precipitation at levels of 25, 50, and 75% of cdf functions, and introducing them into LARS-wg model, the time series of temperature and precipitation in the region in the future time period were computed considering the uncertainty of climate variability. Then, introducing the time series of temperature and precipitation at different risk levels into the artificial neural network, the future runoff was generated. The findings illustrate a decrease of streamflow into Urmia Lake in scenario A2 at the three risk levels 25, 50, and 75% by, respectively, −21, −13, and −0.3%, and an increase by, respectively, 4.7, 13.8, and 18.9% in scenario B1. Also, scenario A2 with its prediction of a warm and dry climate suggests more critical conditions for the future compared to scenario B1 and its cool, humid climate.

  11. Coping with the uncertainties in the climate change adaptation of river dikes using risk-aversion economic optimization

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wang, L.; Van Gelder, P.H.A.J.M.; Vrijling, J.K.; Ranasinghe, R.W.M.R.J.B.; Maskey, S.

    2013-01-01

    To guarantee a safe flood defence in a changing environment, the adaptation to climate change needs to be considered in the design of river dikes. However, the large uncertainty in the projections of future climate leads to varied estimations of future flood probability. How to cope with the uncerta

  12. From climate change uncertainties to strategic options. Objectives, instruments, timing issues

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Philibert, C. [French Agency for Environment and Energy Management, Paris (France)

    1995-12-31

    The question of climate change is characterised by major uncertainties. For some, this means that no action should be undertaken for the time being. For others, forceful action is needed to avoid potentially disastrous consequences: targets and timetables for emission reductions must be agreed. This communication is an attempt to suggest a third alternative, with two main conclusions. The international decision process should focus on instruments and degrees of effort, rather than on `emission trajectories` (the evolution of emission levels over time), rather than on quantitative objectives tied to precise timetables. In this perspective action can start right away. (author)

  13. Uncertainty introduced by flood frequency analysis in the estimation of climate change impacts on flooding

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lawrence, Deborah

    2016-04-01

    Potential changes in extreme flooding under a future climate are of much interest in climate change adaptation work, and estimates for high flows with long return periods are often based on an application of flood frequency analysis methods. The uncertainty introduced by this estimation is, however, only rarely considered when assessing changes in flood magnitude. In this study, an ensemble of hydrological projections for each of 115 catchments distributed across Norway is analysed to derive an estimate for the percentage change in the magnitude of the 200-year flood under a future climate. This is the return level used for flood hazard mapping in Norway. The ensemble of projections is based on climate data from 10 EUROCORDEX GCM/RCM combinations, two bias correction methods (empirical quantile mapping and double gamma function), and 25 alternative parameterisations of the HBV hydrological model. For each hydrological simulation, the annual maximum series is used to estimate the 200-year flood for the reference period, 1971-2000 and a future period, 2071-2100, based on two and three-parameter GEV distributions. In addition, bootstrap resampling is used to estimate the 95% confidence levels for the extreme value estimates, and this range is incorporated into the ensemble estimates for each catchment. As has been shown in previous work based on earlier climate projections, there are large regional differences in the projected changes in the 200-year flood across Norway, with median ensemble projections ranging from 44% to +56% for the daily-averaged flood magnitude. These differences reflect the relative importance of rainfall vs. snowmelt as the dominant flood generating process in different regions, at differing altitudes and as a function of catchment area, in addition to dominant storm tracks. Variance decomposition is used to assess the relative contributions of the following components to the total spread (given by the 5 to 95% range) in the ensemble for each

  14. Uncertainty of the hydrological response to climate change conditions; 605 basins, 3 hydrological models, 5 climate models, 5 hydrological variables

    Science.gov (United States)

    Melsen, Lieke; Mizukami, Naoki; Newman, Andrew; Clark, Martyn; Teuling, Adriaan

    2016-04-01

    Many studies investigated the effect of a changing climate on the hydrological response of a catchment and uncertainty of the effect coming from hydrologic modelling (e.g., forcing, hydrologic model structures, and parameters). However, most past studies used only a single or a small number of catchments. To go beyond the case-study, and to assess the uncertainty involved in modelling the hydrological impact of climate change more comprehensively, we studied 605 basins over a wide range of climate regimes throughout the contiguous USA. We used three different widely-used hydrological models (VIC, HBV, SAC), which we forced with five distinct climate model outputs. The hydrological models have been run for a base period (1986-2008) for which observations were available, and for a future period (2070-2099). Instead of calibrating each hydrological model for each basin, the model has been run with a parameter sample (varying from 1600 to 1900 samples dependent on the number of free parameters in the model). Five hydrological states and fluxes were stored; discharge, evapotranspiration, soil moisture, SWE and snow melt, and 15 different metrics and signatures have been obtained for each model run. With the results, we conduct a sensitivity analysis over the change in signatures from the future period compared to the base period. In this way, we can identify the parameters that are responsible for certain projected changes, and identify the processes responsible for this change. By using three different models, in which VIC is most distinctive in including explicit vegetation parameters, we can compare different process representations and the effect on the projected hydrological change.

  15. Model uncertainty in economic impacts of climate change: Bernoulli versus Lotka Volterra dynamics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooke, Roger M

    2013-01-01

    The dynamic economic behavior in most integrated assessment models linking economic growth to climate change involves a differential equation solved by Jacob Bernoulli in 1695. Using the dynamic integrated climate economy (DICE) model and freezing exogenous variables at initial values, this dynamic is shown to produce implausible projections on a 60-year time frame. If world capital started at US$1, after 60 years the world economy would be indistinguishable from one starting with 10 times the current capitalization. Such behavior points to uncertainty at the level of the fundamental dynamics, and suggests that discussions of discounting, utility, damage functions, and ethics should be conducted within a more general modeling vocabulary. Lotka Volterra dynamics is proposed as an alternative with greater prime facie plausibility. With near universality, economists assume that economic growth will go on forever. Lotka Volterra dynamics alert us to the possibility of collapse.

  16. Climate Change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Torben Valdbjørn; Hansen, Ernst Jan de Place

    2011-01-01

    and evaluated in a Danish context. The uncertainty of the scenarios leaves major challenges that, if not addressed and taken into account in building design, will grow far more serious as climate change progresses. Cases implemented in the Danish building stock illustrate adaptation to climate change...... and illustrate how building design can include mitigating measures to counteract climate change. Cases studied were individual buildings as well as the urban environment. Furthermore the paper describes some of the issues that must be addressed, as the building sector is investing in measures to adapt to climate......This paper presents the effects of climate change relevant for Denmark, including the change in mean year values as well as the extent of maximum and minimum extremes. Described by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the assumptions that the scenarios are based on were outlined...

  17. Climate Change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Torben Valdbjørn; Hansen, Ernst Jan de Place

    2011-01-01

    This paper presents the effects of climate change relevant for Denmark, including the change in mean year values as well as the extent of maximum and minimum extremes. Described by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the assumptions that the scenarios are based on were outlined...... and evaluated in a Danish context. The uncertainty of the scenarios leaves major challenges that, if not addressed and taken into account in building design, will grow far more serious as climate change progresses. Cases implemented in the Danish building stock illustrate adaptation to climate change...... and illustrate how building design can include mitigating measures to counteract climate change. Cases studied were individual buildings as well as the urban environment. Furthermore the paper describes some of the issues that must be addressed, as the building sector is investing in measures to adapt to climate...

  18. Projected changes, climate change signal, and uncertainties in the CMIP5-based projections of ocean surface wave heights

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xiaolan; Feng, Yang; Swail, Val R.

    2016-04-01

    Ocean surface waves can be major hazards in coastal and offshore activities. However, wave observations are available only at limited locations and cover only the recent few decades. Also, there exists very limited information on ocean wave behavior in response to climate change, because such information is not simulated in current global climate models. In a recent study, we used a multivariate regression model with lagged dependent variable to make statistical global projections of changes in significant wave heights (Hs) using mean sea level pressure (SLP) information from 20 CMIP5 climate models for the twenty-first century. The statistical model was calibrated and validated using the ERA-Interim reanalysis of Hs and SLP for the period 1981-2010. The results show Hs increases in the tropics (especially in the eastern tropical Pacific) and in southern hemisphere high-latitudes. Under the projected 2070-2099 climate condition of the RCP8.5 scenario, the occurrence frequency of the present-day one-in-10-year extreme wave heights is likely to double or triple in several coastal regions around the world (e.g., the Chilean coast, Gulf of Oman, Gulf of Bengal, Gulf of Mexico). More recently, we used the analysis of variance approaches to quantify the climate change signal and uncertainty in multi-model ensembles of statistical Hs simulations globally, which are based on the CMIP5 historical, RCP4.5 and RCP8.5 forcing scenario simulations of SLP. In a 4-model 3-run ensemble, the 4-model common signal of climate change is found to strengthen over time, as would be expected. For the historical followed by RCP8.5 scenario, the common signal in annual mean Hs is found to be significant over 16.6%, 55.0% and 82.2% of the area by year 2005, 2050 and 2099, respectively. For the annual maximum, the signal is much weaker. The signal is strongest in the eastern tropical Pacific, featuring significant increases in both the annual mean and maximum of Hs in this region. The climate

  19. Extreme Events in China under Climate Change: Uncertainty and related impacts (CSSP-FOREX)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leckebusch, Gregor C.; Befort, Daniel J.; Hodges, Kevin I.

    2016-04-01

    Suitable adaptation strategies or the timely initiation of related mitigation efforts in East Asia will strongly depend on robust and comprehensive information about future near-term as well as long-term potential changes in the climate system. Therefore, understanding the driving mechanisms associated with the East Asian climate is of major importance. The FOREX project (Fostering Regional Decision Making by the Assessment of Uncertainties of Future Regional Extremes and their Linkage to Global Climate System Variability for China and East Asia) focuses on the investigation of extreme wind and rainfall related events over Eastern Asia and their possible future changes. Here, analyses focus on the link between local extreme events and their driving weather systems. This includes the coupling between local rainfall extremes and tropical cyclones, the Meiyu frontal system, extra-tropical teleconnections and monsoonal activity. Furthermore, the relation between these driving weather systems and large-scale variability modes, e.g. NAO, PDO, ENSO is analysed. Thus, beside analysing future changes of local extreme events, the temporal variability of their driving weather systems and related large-scale variability modes will be assessed in current CMIP5 global model simulations to obtain more robust results. Beyond an overview of FOREX itself, first results regarding the link between local extremes and their steering weather systems based on observational and reanalysis data are shown. Special focus is laid on the contribution of monsoonal activity, tropical cyclones and the Meiyu frontal system on the inter-annual variability of the East Asian summer rainfall.

  20. Uncertainties in climate change projections and regional downscaling: implications for water resources management

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Buytaert, W.; Vuille, M.; Dewulf, A.; Urrutia, R.; Karmalkar, A.; Célleri, R.

    2010-01-01

    Climate change is expected to have a large impact on water resources worldwide. A major problem in assessing the potential impact of a changing climate on these resources is the difference in spatial scale between available climate change projections and water resources management. Regional climate

  1. CLIMB - Climate induced changes on the hydrology of mediterranean basins - Reducing uncertainties and quantifying risk

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ludwig, Ralf

    2010-05-01

    According to future climate projections, Mediterranean countries are at high risk for an even pronounced susceptibility to changes in the hydrological budget and extremes. These changes are expected to have severe direct impacts on the management of water resources. Threats include severe droughts and extreme flooding, salinization of coastal aquifers, degradation of fertile soils and desertification due to poor and unsustainable water management practices. It can be foreseen that, unless appropriate adaptation measures are undertaken, the changes in the hydrologic cycle will give rise to an increasing potential for tension and conflict among the political and economic actors in this vulnerable region. The presented project initiative CLIMB, funded under EC's 7th Framework Program (FP7-ENV-2009-1), has started in January 2010. In its 4-year design, it shall analyze ongoing and future climate induced changes in hydrological budgets and extremes across the Mediterranean and neighboring regions. This is undertaken in study sites located in Sardinia, Northern Italy, Southern France, Tunisia, Egypt and the Palestinian-administered area Gaza. The work plan is targeted to selected river or aquifer catchments, where the consortium will employ a combination of novel field monitoring and remote sensing concepts, data assimilation, integrated hydrologic (and biophysical) modeling and socioeconomic factor analyses to reduce existing uncertainties in climate change impact analysis. Advanced climate scenario analysis will be employed and available ensembles of regional climate model simulations will be downscaling. This process will provide the drivers for an ensemble of hydro(-geo)logical models with different degrees of complexity in terms of process description and level of integration. The results of hydrological modeling and socio-economic factor analysis will enable the development of a GIS-based Vulnerability and Risk Assessment Tool. This tool will serve as a platform

  2. Scenario and modelling uncertainty in global mean temperature change derived from emission driven Global Climate Models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. B. B. Booth

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available We compare future changes in global mean temperature in response to different future scenarios which, for the first time, arise from emission driven rather than concentration driven perturbed parameter ensemble of a Global Climate Model (GCM. These new GCM simulations sample uncertainties in atmospheric feedbacks, land carbon cycle, ocean physics and aerosol sulphur cycle processes. We find broader ranges of projected temperature responses arising when considering emission rather than concentration driven simulations (with 10–90 percentile ranges of 1.7 K for the aggressive mitigation scenario up to 3.9 K for the high end business as usual scenario. A small minority of simulations resulting from combinations of strong atmospheric feedbacks and carbon cycle responses show temperature increases in excess of 9 degrees (RCP8.5 and even under aggressive mitigation (RCP2.6 temperatures in excess of 4 K. While the simulations point to much larger temperature ranges for emission driven experiments, they do not change existing expectations (based on previous concentration driven experiments on the timescale that different sources of uncertainty are important. The new simulations sample a range of future atmospheric concentrations for each emission scenario. Both in case of SRES A1B and the Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs, the concentration pathways used to drive GCM ensembles lies towards the lower end of our simulated distribution. This design decision (a legecy of previous assessments is likely to lead concentration driven experiments to under-sample strong feedback responses in concentration driven projections. Our ensemble of emission driven simulations span the global temperature response of other multi-model frameworks except at the low end, where combinations of low climate sensitivity and low carbon cycle feedbacks lead to responses outside our ensemble range. The ensemble simulates a number of high end responses which lie above the

  3. Linking the uncertainty of low frequency variability in tropical forcing in regional climate change

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Forest, Chris E. [The Pennsylvania State University; Barsugli, Joseph J. [Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES) at the University of Colorado at Boulder and NOAA Earth Systems Research Laboratory; Li, Wei [The Pennsylvania State University

    2015-02-20

    The project utilizes multiple atmospheric general circulation models (AGCMs) to examine the regional climate sensitivity to tropical sea surface temperature forcing through a series of ensemble experiments. The overall goal for this work is to use the global teleconnection operator (GTO) as a metric to assess the impact of model structural differences on the uncertainties in regional climate variability.

  4. An Assessment of Uncertainty in Projections of Climate-Induced Changes to U.S. O3 Pollution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Selin, N. E.; Garcia Menendez, F.; Monier, E.

    2015-12-01

    We have generated an ensemble simulation of 21st century climate change with over 3,000 years of modeled air quality to explore major sources of uncertainty in projections of climate-induced change to surface O3 over the US. Using the Community Atmosphere Model with Chemistry (CAM-Chem) coupled to the MIT Integrated Global System Model (IGSM-CAM), we are able to evaluate and compare how the three main drivers of uncertainty in climate simulations, emissions scenario, model response and natural variability, propagate to estimates of O3 concentrations. Our simulations of atmospheric chemistry in 2050 and 2100 under three different socioeconomic scenarios, suggest that the climate penalty on US O3 pollution may be substantial (> 5 ppb) under a business-as-usual case. These projections also reveal that greenhouse gas mitigation policies can significantly lessen these impacts. However, large uncertainties in climate models beyond emissions scenario strongly propagate to simulated O3 concentrations. Our results from hundreds of years of simulated air quality under multiple model initializations show that truly isolating the impact of anthropogenic-forced climate change requires multidecadal simulations (>15 years) and natural variability can largely mask climate-induced changes to surface O3 projected prior to 2050, under greenhouse gas mitigation, or for specific regions of the US. Similarly the effect of climate model response, largely ignored in air quality impact assessments, is evaluated by applying different values of climate sensitivity (2.0 - 4.5˚C) within the ensemble. Here again, projected impacts of climate change on O3 are shown to be largely dependent on the magnitude of model response beyond greenhouse gas emissions scenario. Finally, we discuss how uncertainty in air quality projections may further propagate to estimates of health and economic impacts, as well as the implications for cost-benefit climate policy analyses.

  5. Uncertainty in hydrological change modelling

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Seaby, Lauren Paige

    Hydrological change modelling methodologies generally use climate models outputs to force hydrological simulations under changed conditions. There are nested sources of uncertainty throughout this methodology, including choice of climate model and subsequent bias correction methods. This Ph.......D. study evaluates the uncertainty of the impact of climate change in hydrological simulations given multiple climate models and bias correction methods of varying complexity. Three distribution based scaling methods (DBS) were developed and benchmarked against a more simplistic and commonly used delta...... change (DC) approach. These climate model projections were then used to force hydrological simulations under climate change for the island Sjælland in Denmark to analyse the contribution of different climate models and bias correction methods to overall uncertainty in the hydrological change modelling...

  6. Disentangling effects of uncertainties on population projections: climate change impact on an epixylic bryophyte.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruete, Alejandro; Yang, Wei; Bärring, Lars; Stenseth, Nils Chr; Snäll, Tord

    2012-08-01

    Assessment of future ecosystem risks should account for the relevant uncertainty sources. This means accounting for the joint effects of climate variables and using modelling techniques that allow proper treatment of uncertainties. We investigate the influence of three of the IPCC's scenarios of greenhouse gas emissions (special report on emission scenarios (SRES)) on projections of the future abundance of a bryophyte model species. We also compare the relative importance of uncertainty sources on the population projections. The whole chain global climate model (GCM)-regional climate model-population dynamics model is addressed. The uncertainty depends on both natural- and model-related sources, in particular on GCM uncertainty. Ignoring the uncertainties gives an unwarranted impression of confidence in the results. The most likely population development of the bryophyte Buxbaumia viridis towards the end of this century is negative: even with a low-emission scenario, there is more than a 65 per cent risk for the population to be halved. The conclusion of a population decline is valid for all SRES scenarios investigated. Uncertainties are no longer an obstacle, but a mandatory aspect to include in the viability analysis of populations.

  7. Reconciling uncertainties in integrated science and policy models: Applications to global climate change

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kandlikar, M.

    1994-12-01

    In this thesis tools of data reconciliation are used to integrate available information into scientific and policy models of greenhouse gases. The role of uncertainties in scientific and policy models of global climate change is examined, and implications for global change policy are drawn. Methane is the second most important greenhouse gas. Global sources and sinks of methane have significant uncertainties. A chance constrained methodology was developed and used to perform inversions on the global methane cycle. Budgets of methane that are consistent with source fluxes, isotopic and ice core measurements were determined. While it is not possible to come up with a single budget for CH{sub 4}, performing the calculation with a number of sets of assumed priors suggests a convergence in the allowed range for sources. In some cases -- wetlands (70-130 Tg/yr), rice paddies (60-125 Tg/yr) a significant reduction in the uncertainty of the source estimate is achieved. Our results compare favorably with the most recent measurements of flux estimates. For comparison, a similar analysis using bayes monte carlo simulation was performed. The question of the missing sink for carbon remains unresolved. Two analyses that attempt to quantify the missing sink were performed. First, a steady state analysis of the carbon cycle was used to determine the pre-industrial inter-hemispheric carbon concentration gradient. Second, a full blown dynamic inversion of the carbon cycle was performed. An advection diffusion ocean model with surface chemistry, coupled to box models of the atmosphere and the biosphere was inverted to fit available measurements of {sup 12}C and {sup 14}C carbon isotopes using Differential-Algebraic Optimization. The model effectively suggests that the {open_quotes}missing{close_quotes} sink for carbon is hiding in the biosphere. Scenario dependent trace gas indices were calculated for CH{sub 4}, N{sub 2}O, HCFC-22.

  8. Flexibility in Flood Management Design: Proactive Planning Under Climate Change Uncertainty

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smet, K.; de Neufville, R.; van der Vlist, M.

    2015-12-01

    This paper presents an innovative, value-enhancing procedure for effective planning and design of long-lived flood management infrastructure given uncertain future flooding threats due to climate change. Designing infrastructure that can be adapted over time is a method to safeguard the efficacy of current design decisions given uncertainty about rates and future impacts of climate change. This paper explores the value of embedding "options" in a physical structure, where an option is the right but not the obligation to do something at a later date (e.g. over-dimensioning a floodwall foundation now facilitates a future height addition in response to observed increases in sea level; building of extra pump bays in a pumping station now enables the addition of pumping capacity whenever increased precipitation warrants an expansion.) The proposed procedure couples a simulation model that captures future climate induced changes to the hydrologic operating environment of a structure, with an economic model that estimates the lifetime economic performance of alternative investments. The economic model uses Real "In" Options analysis, a type of cash flow analysis that quantifies the implicit value of options and the flexibility they provide. This procedure is demonstrated using replacement planning for the multi-functional pumping station IJmuiden on the North Sea Canal in the Netherlands. Flexibility in design decisions is modelled, varying the size and specific options included in the new structure. Results indicate that the incorporation of options within the structural design has the potential to improve its economic performance, as compared to more traditional, "build it once and build it big" designs where flexibility is not an explicit design criterion. The added value resulting from the incorporation of flexibility varies with the range of future conditions considered, as well as the options examined. This procedure could be applied more broadly to explore

  9. Accounting for global-mean warming and scaling uncertainties in climate change impact studies: application to a regulated lake system

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available A probabilistic assessment of climate change and related impacts should consider a large range of potential future climate scenarios. State-of-the-art climate models, especially coupled atmosphere-ocean general circulation models and Regional Climate Models (RCMs cannot, however, be used to simulate such a large number of scenarios. This paper presents a methodology for obtaining future climate scenarios through a simple scaling methodology. The projections of several key meteorological variables obtained from a few regional climate model runs are scaled, based on different global-mean warming projections drawn in a probability distribution of future global-mean warming. The resulting climate change scenarios are used to drive a hydrological and a water management model to analyse the potential climate change impacts on a water resources system. This methodology enables a joint quantification of the climate change impact uncertainty induced by the global-mean warming scenarios and the regional climate response. It is applied to a case study in Switzerland, a water resources system formed by three interconnected lakes located in the Jura Mountains. The system behaviour is simulated for a control period (1961–1990 and a future period (2070–2099. The potential climate change impacts are assessed through a set of impact indices related to different fields of interest (hydrology, agriculture and ecology. The results obtained show that future climate conditions will have a significant influence on the performance of the system and that the uncertainty induced by the inter-RCM variability will contribute to much of the uncertainty of the prediction of the total impact. These CSRs cover the area considered in the 2001–2004 EU funded project SWURVE.

  10. Future agricultural water demand under climate change: regional variability and uncertainties arising from CMIP5 climate projections

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schewe, J.; Wada, Y.; Wisser, D.

    2012-12-01

    The agricultural sector (irrigation and livestock) uses by far the largest amount of water among all sectors and is responsible for 70% of the global water withdrawal. At a country scale, irrigation water withdrawal often exceeds 90% of the total water used in many of emerging and developing countries such as India, Pakistan, Iran and Mexico, sustaining much of food production and the livelihood of millions of people. The livestock sector generally accounts less than 1-2% of total water withdrawal, yet exceeds 10-30% of the total water used in many of the African countries. Future agricultural water demand is, however, subject to large uncertainties due to anticipated climate change, i.e. warming temperature and changing precipitation variability, in various regions of the world. Here, we use a global hydrological and water resources model to quantify the impact of climate change on regional irrigation and livestock water demand, and the resulting uncertainties arsing from newly available CMIP5 climate projections obtained through Inter-Sectoral Impact Model Intercomparison Project (ISI-MIP; http://www.isi-mip.org/). Irrigation water requirement per unit crop area is estimated by simulating daily soil water balance with crop-related data. Livestock water demand is calculated by combining livestock densities with their drinking water requirements that is a function of air temperature. The results of the ensemble mean show that global irrigation and livestock water demand increased by ~6% and ~12% by 2050 respectively primarily due to higher evaporative demand as a result of increased temperature. At a regional scale, agricultural water demand decreased over some parts of Europe (e.g., Italy, Germany) and Southeast Asia (e.g., the Philippines, Malaysia), but increased over South Asia, the U.S., the Middle East and Africa. However, the projections are highly uncertain over many parts of the world. The results of the ensemble projections in agricultural water demand

  11. Impact of Climate Change on extreme flows across Great Britain: a comparison of extreme value distributions and uncertainty assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collet, Lila; Beevers, Lindsay; Prudhomme, Christel

    2016-04-01

    Floods are the most common and widely distributed natural risk to life and property worldwide, causing over £6B worth of damage to the UK since 2000. Climate projections are predicted to result in the increase of UK properties at risk from flooding. It thus becomes urgent to assess the possible impact of these changes on extreme high flows in particular, and evaluate the uncertainties related to these projections. This paper aims to assess the changes in extreme runoff for the 1:100 year return period event across Great Britain as a result of climate change. It is based on the Future Flow database and analyses daily runoff over 1961-2098 for 281 gauging stations. The Generalized Extreme Value (GEV) and Generalized Pareto (GP) distribution functions are automatically fitted for 11 climate-change ensembles over the baseline (1961-1990) and the 2080s (2069-2098) for each gauging station. The analysis evaluates the uncertainty related to the Extreme Value (EV) distributions, and the uncertainty related to the climate model parameterization. Then it assesses return levels with combined uncertainties across Great Britain for both EV distributions. Ultimately, this work gives a national picture of extreme flows assessed by the two methods and allows a direct comparison between them. Results show that the GP distribution computes higher runoff estimates than the GEV distribution. Generally, the uncertainties associated with both distributions are similar, but the GP computes significantly higher uncertainties for stations in the south and southeast of England. From the baseline to the 2080s horizon, the GEV distribution shows variable runoff trends across Great Britain, while the GP distribution shows an increasing trend of return level estimate and uncertainties, especially in the northeast and southeast of England. The lowest climate model and extreme value uncertainty is generally seen across the west coast of Great Britain. In terms of uncertainty, with the GEV

  12. Climatic change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This book proposes both a scientific and societal approach of a phenomenon which is today the object of lot of debates. Climates perception is illustrated with examples taken in various modern civilizations and in the history of mankind. The Sahara example illustrates the notion of climate evolution. The last chapters are devoted to forecasting and scenarios for the future, taking into account the share of uncertainty. The controversies generated by these forecasts and the Kyoto protocol stakes demonstrate the tight links between the scientific, economical and political aspects in climatic change debates. (J.S.)

  13. Quantifying uncertainty in precipitation climatology, twenty-first century change, and teleconnections in global climate models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langenbrunner, Baird Grant

    The ability of global climate models (GCMs) to simulate climatological precipitation and other features of the hydrological cycle accurately is acceptable by some metrics, especially at large scales. Regionally, however, there can be substantial discrepancy in a multi-model ensemble, both in the annual or seasonal historical precipitation climatology as well as in end-of-century changes. Characterizing this intermodel spread and identifying leading uncertainty patterns and underlying physical pathways is important in constraining climatological biases and projections of future change. This dissertation looks at three aspects of precipitation uncertainty in ensembles. First, El Nino-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) teleconnections are analyzed in an atmosphere-only ensemble to gauge the ability of atmospheric components of GCMs to reproduce ENSO precipitation teleconnections. This serves as a test for how well models simulate the atmospheric response to sea surface temperature forcing in the immediate ENSO vicinity, as well as how accurately they reproduce the large-scale tropical-to-midlatitude dynamics leading to teleconnected precipitation. While individual models have difficulty in simulating the exact spatial pattern of teleconnections, they demonstrate skill in regional amplitude measures and sign agreement of the precipitation teleconnections at the grid point level, which lends value to the use of such measures in global warming projections. Next, objective spatial analysis techniques are applied to a fully-coupled GCM ensemble in order to visualize patterns of uncertainty in end-of-century precipitation changes and in the historical climatology. Global patterns are considered first, with the tropics exerting a clear dominance in intermodel spread, mainly within zones of deep convection or along convective margins. Regional domains are considered second, with a focus on the wintertime midlatitude Pacific storm track. A key region of end-of-century precipitation

  14. The role of water reservoir operation in climate change impact assessments: expanding uncertainties and evolving tradeoffs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giuliani, Matteo; Anghileri, Daniela; Castelletti, Andrea; Soncini-Sessa, Rodolfo

    2015-04-01

    Climate change and growing population are expected to severely affect freshwater availability by the end of 21th century. Although many river basins are likely to become more prone to periods of reduced water supply, risking considerable impacts on the society, the economy, and the environment, the operations of many water resource systems are still designed on the basis of the observed historical hydrologic variability. Yet, under changing hydroclimatic forcing, no guarantee exists that policies optimized over the past will not fail in coming years. This work explores the impact of projected climate change and the associated uncertainty on the policy performance for different future time horizons. A perturbed physics ensemble of projected hydroclimatic conditions based on the HadCM3 General Circulation Modelis is used to simulate the whole set of Pareto optimal policies over the different futures. The changes in the overall system performance and the evolution of each single-tradeoff are analyzed to improve our understanding of the system's vulnerabilities. The study is developed on the Red-Thai Binh River system, Vietnam. The Red River Basin is the second largest basin of Vietnam, draining an area of about 169,000 km2, and comprises three main tributaries and several reservoirs, namely SonLa and HoaBinh on the Da River, ThacBa and TuyenQuang on the Lo River. These reservoirs are regulated for maximizing hydropower production, mitigating downstream flood, primarily in Hanoi, and guaranteeing irrigation water supply to the agricultural districts in the delta. We address the challenges of the policy design problem (e.g., dimensionality of the system, number of objectives involved) by adopting the evolutionary multi-objective direct policy search (EMODPS), an approximate dynamic programming method that combines direct policy search, nonlinear approximating networks and multi-objective evolutionary algorithms to design Pareto approximate operating policies for multi

  15. Renewables and climate change mitigation: Irreversible energy investment under uncertainty and portfolio effects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ongoing negotiations under the UNFCCC center around the possibilities for stabilization of greenhouse gases at a “safe” level. New energy technologies are assumed to make major contributions to this goal. However, in the light of scientific uncertainty (e.g. about climate sensitivity, feedback effects, etc.), market uncertainty (e.g. fuel price volatility), technological uncertainty (e.g. availability of renewable technology), socio-economic uncertainty (e.g. development of different macroeconomic factors) and policy uncertainty (e.g. about commitment to specific targets and stability of CO2 prices), it is difficult to assess the importance of different technologies in achieving robust long-term climate risk mitigation. One example currently debated in this context is biomass-based energy, which can be used to produce both carbon-neutral electricity and at the same time offer the possibility of “negative emissions” by capturing carbon from biomass combustion at the conversion facility and permanently storing it. In this study, we analyze the impact of uncertainty on investment decision-making at the plant level in a real options valuation framework, and then use the GGI Scenario Database () as a point of departure for deriving optimal technology portfolios across different socio-economic scenarios for a range of stabilization targets, focusing, in particular, on the new, low-emission targets using alternative risk measures.

  16. Spatial uncertainty in bias corrected climate change projections and hydrogeological impacts

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Seaby, Lauren Paige; Refsgaard, Jens Christian; Sonnenborg, Torben;

    2015-01-01

    The question of which climate model bias correction methods and spatial scales for correction are optimal for both projecting future hydrological changes as well as removing initial model bias has so far received little attention. For 11 climate models (CMs), or GCM/RCM – Global/Regional Climate...

  17. Identification and analysis of uncertainty in disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation in South and Southeast Asia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Keur, van der Peter; Bers, van Caroline; Henriksen, Hans Jørgen; Nibanupudi, Hari Krishna; Yadav, Shobha; Wijaya, Rina; Subiyono, Andreas; Mukerjee, Nandan; Hausmann, Hans Jakob; Hare, Matt; Scheltinga, van Catharien Terwisscha; Pearn, Gregory; Jaspers, Fons

    2016-01-01

    This paper addresses the mainstreaming of uncertainty in Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) and Climate Change Adaptation (CCA) using as a case South and Southeast Asia, a region highly vulnerable to a wide range of natural disasters. Improvements in the implementation of DRR and CCA at the community

  18. Climate model uncertainty vs. conceptual geological uncertainty in hydrological modeling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. O. Sonnenborg

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Projections of climate change impact are associated with a cascade of uncertainties including CO2 emission scenario, climate model, downscaling and impact model. The relative importance of the individual uncertainty sources is expected to depend on several factors including the quantity that is projected. In the present study the impacts of climate model uncertainty and geological model uncertainty on hydraulic head, stream flow, travel time and capture zones are evaluated. Six versions of a physically based and distributed hydrological model, each containing a unique interpretation of the geological structure of the model area, are forced by 11 climate model projections. Each projection of future climate is a result of a GCM-RCM model combination (from the ENSEMBLES project forced by the same CO2 scenario (A1B. The changes from the reference period (1991–2010 to the future period (2081–2100 in projected hydrological variables are evaluated and the effects of geological model and climate model uncertainties are quantified. The results show that uncertainty propagation is context dependent. While the geological conceptualization is the dominating uncertainty source for projection of travel time and capture zones, the uncertainty on the climate models is more important for groundwater hydraulic heads and stream flow.

  19. Projecting Future Land Use Changes in West Africa Driven by Climate and Socioeconomic Factors: Uncertainties and Implications for Adaptation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, G.; Ahmed, K. F.; You, L.

    2015-12-01

    Land use changes constitute an important regional climate change forcing in West Africa, a region of strong land-atmosphere coupling. At the same time, climate change can be an important driver for land use, although its importance relative to the impact of socio-economic factors may vary significant from region to region. This study compares the contributions of climate change and socioeconomic development to potential future changes of agricultural land use in West Africa and examines various sources of uncertainty using a land use projection model (LandPro) that accounts for the impact of socioeconomic drivers on the demand side and the impact of climate-induced crop yield changes on the supply side. Future crop yield changes were simulated by a process-based crop model driven with future climate projections from a regional climate model, and future changes of food demand is projected using a model for policy analysis of agricultural commodities and trade. The impact of human decision-making on land use was explicitly considered through multiple "what-if" scenarios to examine the range of uncertainties in projecting future land use. Without agricultural intensification, the climate-induced decrease of crop yield together with increase of food demand are found to cause a significant increase in agricultural land use at the expense of forest and grassland by the mid-century, and the resulting land use land cover changes are found to feed back to the regional climate in a way that exacerbates the negative impact of climate on crop yield. Analysis of results from multiple decision-making scenarios suggests that human adaptation characterized by science-informed decision making to minimize land use could be very effective in many parts of the region.

  20. Climate change adaptation under uncertainty in the developing world: A case study of sea level rise in Kiribati

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donner, S. D.; Webber, S.

    2011-12-01

    Climate change is expected to have the greatest impact in parts of the developing world. At the 2010 meeting of U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change in Cancun, industrialized countries agreed in principle to provide US$100 billion per year by 2020 to assist the developing world respond to climate change. This "Green Climate Fund" is a critical step towards addressing the challenge of climate change. However, the policy and discourse on supporting adaptation in the developing world remains highly idealized. For example, the efficacy of "no regrets" adaptation efforts or "mainstreaming" adaptation into decision-making are rarely evaluated in the real world. In this presentation, I will discuss the gap between adaptation theory and practice using a multi-year case study of the cultural, social and scientific obstacles to adapting to sea level rise in the Pacific atoll nation of Kiribati. Our field research reveals how scientific and institutional uncertainty can limit international efforts to fund adaptation and lead to spiraling costs. Scientific uncertainty about hyper-local impacts of sea level rise, though irreducible, can at times limit decision-making about adaptation measures, contrary to the notion that "good" decision-making practices can incorporate scientific uncertainty. Efforts to improve institutional capacity must be done carefully, or they risk inadvertently slowing the implementation of adaptation measures and increasing the likelihood of "mal"-adaptation.

  1. Adaptive governance, uncertainty, and risk: policy framing and responses to climate change, drought, and flood

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    M. Hurlbert; J. Gupta

    2016-01-01

    As climate change impacts result in more extreme events (such as droughts and floods), the need to understand which policies facilitate effective climate change adaptation becomes crucial. Hence, this article answers the question: How do governments and policymakers frame policy in relation to clima

  2. Uncertainty assessment of climate change adaptation options in urban flash floods

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zhou, Qianqian; Arnbjerg-Nielsen, Karsten

    adaptation options. The case study is a small urban catchment where no significant city development is anticipated. Therefore the main focus is on estimation of impact of uncertainties related to present and future hydrological conditions, impacts on assets, and costing of the damages. The uncertainties....... However, the analysis is complicated by irreducible uncertainties about present and future hydrologic conditions as well as the present and future vulnerability of the area in question. Further, modelling of the actual hazards given the hydrologic conditions also entails substantial uncertainty. The work...... presented is based on a flood risk framework that is in accordance with the EU flood directive, but adapted and extended to incorporate anticipated future changes due to city development and hydrologic extremes. The framework is used to study the importance of inherent uncertainties in order to find robust...

  3. Uncertainty assessment of climate change adaptation using an economic pluvial flood risk framework

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zhou, Qianqian; Arnbjerg-Nielsen, Karsten

    2012-01-01

    It is anticipated that climate change is likely to lead to an increasing risk level of flooding in cities in northern Europe. One challenging question is how to best address the increasing flood risk and assess the costs and benefits of adapting to such changes. We established an integrated...... approach for identification and assessment of climate change adaptation options by incorporating climate change impacts, flood inundation modelling, economic tool and risk assessment and management. The framework is further extended and adapted by embedding a Monte Carlo simulation to estimate the total...

  4. Directed International Technological Change and Climate Policy: New Methods for Identifying Robust Policies Under Conditions of Deep Uncertainty

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molina-Perez, Edmundo

    It is widely recognized that international environmental technological change is key to reduce the rapidly rising greenhouse gas emissions of emerging nations. In 2010, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Conference of the Parties (COP) agreed to the creation of the Green Climate Fund (GCF). This new multilateral organization has been created with the collective contributions of COP members, and has been tasked with directing over USD 100 billion per year towards investments that can enhance the development and diffusion of clean energy technologies in both advanced and emerging nations (Helm and Pichler, 2015). The landmark agreement arrived at the COP 21 has reaffirmed the key role that the GCF plays in enabling climate mitigation as it is now necessary to align large scale climate financing efforts with the long-term goals agreed at Paris 2015. This study argues that because of the incomplete understanding of the mechanics of international technological change, the multiplicity of policy options and ultimately the presence of climate and technological change deep uncertainty, climate financing institutions such as the GCF, require new analytical methods for designing long-term robust investment plans. Motivated by these challenges, this dissertation shows that the application of new analytical methods, such as Robust Decision Making (RDM) and Exploratory Modeling (Lempert, Popper and Bankes, 2003) to the study of international technological change and climate policy provides useful insights that can be used for designing a robust architecture of international technological cooperation for climate change mitigation. For this study I developed an exploratory dynamic integrated assessment model (EDIAM) which is used as the scenario generator in a large computational experiment. The scope of the experimental design considers an ample set of climate and technological scenarios. These scenarios combine five sources of uncertainty

  5. The Role of Uncertainty in Climate Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oreskes, N.

    2012-12-01

    Scientific discussions of climate change place considerable weight on uncertainty. The research frontier, by definition, rests at the interface between the known and the unknown and our scientific investigations necessarily track this interface. Yet, other areas of active scientific research are not necessarily characterized by a similar focus on uncertainty; previous assessments of science for policy, for example, do not reveal such extensive efforts at uncertainty quantification. Why has uncertainty loomed so large in climate science? This paper argues that the extensive discussions of uncertainty surrounding climate change are at least in part a response to the social and political context of climate change. Skeptics and contrarians focus on uncertainty as a political strategy, emphasizing or exaggerating uncertainties as a means to undermine public concern about climate change and delay policy action. The strategy works in part because it appeals to a certain logic: if our knowledge is uncertain, then it makes sense to do more research. Change, as the tobacco industry famously realized, requires justification; doubt favors the status quo. However, the strategy also works by pulling scientists into an "uncertainty framework," inspiring them to respond to the challenge by addressing and quantifying the uncertainties. The problem is that all science is uncertain—nothing in science is ever proven absolutely, positively—so as soon as one uncertainty is addressed, another can be raised, which is precisely what contrarians have done over the past twenty years.

  6. Uncertainty Analysis of Coupled Socioeconomic-Cropping Models: Building Confidence in Climate Change Decision-Support Tools for Local Stakeholders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malard, J. J.; Rojas, M.; Adamowski, J. F.; Gálvez, J.; Tuy, H. A.; Melgar-Quiñonez, H.

    2015-12-01

    While cropping models represent the biophysical aspects of agricultural systems, system dynamics modelling offers the possibility of representing the socioeconomic (including social and cultural) aspects of these systems. The two types of models can then be coupled in order to include the socioeconomic dimensions of climate change adaptation in the predictions of cropping models.We develop a dynamically coupled socioeconomic-biophysical model of agricultural production and its repercussions on food security in two case studies from Guatemala (a market-based, intensive agricultural system and a low-input, subsistence crop-based system). Through the specification of the climate inputs to the cropping model, the impacts of climate change on the entire system can be analysed, and the participatory nature of the system dynamics model-building process, in which stakeholders from NGOs to local governmental extension workers were included, helps ensure local trust in and use of the model.However, the analysis of climate variability's impacts on agroecosystems includes uncertainty, especially in the case of joint physical-socioeconomic modelling, and the explicit representation of this uncertainty in the participatory development of the models is important to ensure appropriate use of the models by the end users. In addition, standard model calibration, validation, and uncertainty interval estimation techniques used for physically-based models are impractical in the case of socioeconomic modelling. We present a methodology for the calibration and uncertainty analysis of coupled biophysical (cropping) and system dynamics (socioeconomic) agricultural models, using survey data and expert input to calibrate and evaluate the uncertainty of the system dynamics as well as of the overall coupled model. This approach offers an important tool for local decision makers to evaluate the potential impacts of climate change and their feedbacks through the associated socioeconomic system.

  7. Attributing runoff changes to climate variability and human activities: Uncertainty analysis using four monthly water balance models

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Li, Shuai; Xiong, Lihua; Li, Hongyi; Leung, Lai-Yung R.; Demissie, Yonas

    2016-01-08

    Hydrological simulations to delineate the impacts of climate variability and human activities are subjected to uncertainties related to both parameter and structure of the hydrological models. To analyze the impact of these uncertainties on the model performance and to yield more reliable simulation results, a global calibration and multimodel combination method that integrates the Shuffled Complex Evolution Metropolis (SCEM) and Bayesian Model Averaging (BMA) of four monthly water balance models was proposed. The method was applied to the Weihe River Basin (WRB), the largest tributary of the Yellow River, to determine the contribution of climate variability and human activities to runoff changes. The change point, which was used to determine the baseline period (1956-1990) and human-impacted period (1991-2009), was derived using both cumulative curve and Pettitt’s test. Results show that the combination method from SCEM provides more skillful deterministic predictions than the best calibrated individual model, resulting in the smallest uncertainty interval of runoff changes attributed to climate variability and human activities. This combination methodology provides a practical and flexible tool for attribution of runoff changes to climate variability and human activities by hydrological models.

  8. Uncertainties in predicting species distributions under climate change: a case study using Tetranychus evansi (Acari: Tetranychidae), a widespread agricultural pest

    OpenAIRE

    Meynard, Christine N.; Alain Migeon; Maria Navajas

    2013-01-01

    Many species are shifting their distributions due to climate change and to increasing international trade that allows dispersal of individuals across the globe. In the case of agricultural pests, such range shifts may heavily impact agriculture. Species distribution modelling may help to predict potential changes in pest distributions. However, these modelling strategies are subject to large uncertainties coming from different sources. Here we used the case of the tomato red spider mite (Tetr...

  9. Uncertainty Management in Urban Water Engineering Adaptation to Climate Change - abstract

    Science.gov (United States)

    Current water resource planning and engineering assume a stationary climate, in which the observed historical water flow rate and water quality variations are often used to define the technical basis. When the non-stationarity is considered, however, climate change projection co...

  10. Conservation in the face of climate change: The roles of alternative models, monitoring, and adaptation in confronting and reducing uncertainty

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conroy, M.J.; Runge, M.C.; Nichols, J.D.; Stodola, K.W.; Cooper, R.J.

    2011-01-01

    The broad physical and biological principles behind climate change and its potential large scale ecological impacts on biota are fairly well understood, although likely responses of biotic communities at fine spatio-temporal scales are not, limiting the ability of conservation programs to respond effectively to climate change outside the range of human experience. Much of the climate debate has focused on attempts to resolve key uncertainties in a hypothesis-testing framework. However, conservation decisions cannot await resolution of these scientific issues and instead must proceed in the face of uncertainty. We suggest that conservation should precede in an adaptive management framework, in which decisions are guided by predictions under multiple, plausible hypotheses about climate impacts. Under this plan, monitoring is used to evaluate the response of the system to climate drivers, and management actions (perhaps experimental) are used to confront testable predictions with data, in turn providing feedback for future decision making. We illustrate these principles with the problem of mitigating the effects of climate change on terrestrial bird communities in the southern Appalachian Mountains, USA. ?? 2010 Elsevier Ltd.

  11. Debate around the climatic change: uncertainties, knowledge and challenges; Le rechauffement climatique en debats: incertitudes, acquis et enjeux

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Durand, F

    2007-07-01

    The climatic change is one of the most sensible questions of the 21. century. Some denounce the human activities in the increasing of the temperatures, others prefer to point the uncertainties on the subject and speak of natural phenomena. This book discusses this confusion in order to present the arguments and motivations of the different points of view. It presents the climate changes and the researches on the greenhouse effect. It analyzes the causes and consequences. It presents also the alternative energies and the ways of facing the evolutions. (A.L.B.)

  12. Embracing Uncertainty: A Case Study Examination of How Climate Change is Shifting Water Utility Planning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaatz, L.

    2015-12-01

    Climate change has emerged as one of the greatest challenges facing water utilities' planning for the future, adding a new source and level of complexity that is forcing many agencies to re-examine their decision-making processes. A significant barrier for many agencies is figuring out how to consider highly uncertain climate information and move away from deterministic thinking to make climate-informed decisions. To provide water professionals with practical and relevant information, the Water Utility Climate Alliance teamed up with the American Water Works Association, in coordination with the Water Research Foundation and Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies, to develop a white paper sharing insights into how and why water agencies are modifying planning and decision-making processes. The 13 case studies presented illustrate the variety of ways in which utilities are incorporating climate change into planning, from immediate operational decisions, to capital planning and asset management, to long-term supply planning.

  13. Hydrological projections of climate change scenarios in the Lena and the Mackenzie basins: modeling and uncertainty issues

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gelfan, Alexander; Gustafsson, David; Motovilov, Yury; Arheimer, Berit; Kalugin, Andrei; Krylenko, Inna; Lavrenov, Alexander

    2016-04-01

    The ECOMAG and the HYPE regional hydrological models were setup to assess possible impacts of climate change on the hydrological regime of two pan-Arctic great drainage basins: the Lena and the Mackenzie rivers. We firstly assessed the reliability of the hydrological models to reproduce the historical streamflow series and analyse the hydrological projections from the climate change scenarios. The impacts were assessed in three 30-year periods: early- (2006-2035), mid- (2036-2065) and end-century (2070-2099) using an ensemble of five GCMs and four Representative Concentration Pathways (RCP) scenarios. Results show, particularly, that the basins react with multi-year delay to changes in the RCP2.6 mitigation (peak-and-decline) scenario, and consequently to the potential mitigation measures. Then we assessed the hydrological projections' uncertainty, which is caused by the GCM's and RCP's variabilities, and indicated that the uncertainty rises with the time horizon of the projection and, generally, the uncertainty interval is wider for Mackenzie than for Lena. We finally compare the potential future hydrological impacts predicted based on the GCM-scenario ensemble approach and the delta-change transformation method of the historical observations. We found that the latter method can produce useful information about the climate change impact in the great Arctic rivers, at least for the nearest decades.

  14. Quantifying uncertainty in urban flooding analysis caused by the combined effect of climate and land use change scenarios

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    I.-W. Jung

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available How will the combined impacts of land use change and climate change influence changes in urban flood frequency and what is the main uncertainty source of the results? We attempt to answer to these questions in two catchments with different degrees of urbanization, the Fanno catchment with 84% urban land use and the Johnson catchment with 36% urban land use, both located in the Pacific Northwest of the US. Five uncertainty sources – general circulation model (GCM structures, future greenhouse gas (GHG emission scenarios, land use change scenarios, natural variability, and hydrologic model parameters – are considered to compare the relative source of uncertainty in flood frequency projections. Two land use change scenarios conservation and development, representing possible future land use changes are used for analysis. Results show the highest increase in flood frequency under the combination of medium high GHG emission (A1B and development scenarios, and the lowest increase under the combination of low GHG emission (B1 and conservation scenarios. Although the combined impact is more significant to flood frequency change than individual scenarios, it does not linearly increase flood frequency. Changes in flood frequency are more sensitive to climate change than land use change in the two catchments for 2050s (2040–2069. Shorter term flood frequency change, 2 and 5 year floods, is highly affected by GCM structure, while longer term flood frequency change above 25 year floods is dominated by natural variability. Projected flood frequency changes more significantly in Johnson creek than Fanno creek. This result indicates that, under expected climate change conditions, an adaptive urban planning based on the conservation scenario could be more effective in less developed Johnson catchment than in the already developed Fanno catchment.

  15. An ensemble approach to assess hydrological models' contribution to uncertainties in the analysis of climate change impact on water resources

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. A. Velázquez

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Over the recent years, several research efforts investigated the impact of climate change on water resources for different regions of the world. The projection of future river flows is affected by different sources of uncertainty in the hydro-climatic modelling chain. One of the aims of the QBic3 project (Québec-Bavarian International Collaboration on Climate Change is to assess the contribution to uncertainty of hydrological models by using an ensemble of hydrological models presenting a diversity of structural complexity (i.e. lumped, semi distributed and distributed models. The study investigates two humid, mid-latitude catchments with natural flow conditions; one located in Southern Québec (Canada and one in Southern Bavaria (Germany. Daily flow is simulated with four different hydrological models, forced by outputs from regional climate models driven by a given number of GCMs' members over a reference (1971–2000 and a future (2041–2070 periods. The results show that the choice of the hydrological model does strongly affect the climate change response of selected hydrological indicators, especially those related to low flows. Indicators related to high flows seem less sensitive on the choice of the hydrological model. Therefore, the computationally less demanding models (usually simple, lumped and conceptual give a significant level of trust for high and overall mean flows.

  16. Business and climate change: key challenges in the face of policy uncertainty and economic recession

    OpenAIRE

    Kolk, A.; Pinkse, J.

    2009-01-01

    Climate change is seen as the most pressing environmental problem of our time by many companies, policymakers and other stakeholders. It is currently also at the forefront of attention in view of attempts to conclude a successor to the Kyoto Protocol that expires in 2012. In bail-out plans and policies to address the economic recession and credit crisis, climate aspects have figured prominently as well. This article examines recent policy and economic developments and their relevance for busi...

  17. An integrated assessment modelling framework for uncertainty studies in global and regional climate change: the MIT IGSM-CAM (version 1.0)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monier, E.; Scott, J. R.; Sokolov, A. P.; Forest, C. E.; Schlosser, C. A.

    2013-03-01

    This paper describes an integrated assessment modelling framework for uncertainty studies in global and regional climate change. In this framework, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Integrated Global System Model (IGSM), an integrated assessment model that couples an earth system model of intermediate complexity to a human activity model, is linked to the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) Community Atmosphere Model (CAM). Since the MIT IGSM-CAM framework (version 1.0) incorporates a human activity model, it is possible to analyse uncertainties in emissions resulting from both uncertainties in the economic model parameters and uncertainty in future climate policies. Another major feature is the flexibility to vary key climate parameters controlling the climate system response: climate sensitivity, net aerosol forcing and ocean heat uptake rate. Thus, the IGSM-CAM is a computationally efficient framework to explore the uncertainty in future global and regional climate change associated with uncertainty in the climate response and projected emissions. This study presents 21st century simulations based on two emissions scenarios (unconstrained scenario and stabilization scenario at 660 ppm CO2-equivalent) and three sets of climate parameters. The chosen climate parameters provide a good approximation for the median, and the 5th and 95th percentiles of the probability distribution of 21st century global climate change. As such, this study presents new estimates of the 90% probability interval of regional climate change for different emissions scenarios. These results underscore the large uncertainty in regional climate change resulting from uncertainty in climate parameters and emissions, especially when it comes to changes in precipitation.

  18. An integrated assessment modelling framework for uncertainty studies in global and regional climate change: the MIT IGSM-CAM (version 1.0

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. Monier

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available This paper describes an integrated assessment modelling framework for uncertainty studies in global and regional climate change. In this framework, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT Integrated Global System Model (IGSM, an integrated assessment model that couples an earth system model of intermediate complexity to a human activity model, is linked to the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR Community Atmosphere Model (CAM. Since the MIT IGSM-CAM framework (version 1.0 incorporates a human activity model, it is possible to analyse uncertainties in emissions resulting from both uncertainties in the economic model parameters and uncertainty in future climate policies. Another major feature is the flexibility to vary key climate parameters controlling the climate system response: climate sensitivity, net aerosol forcing and ocean heat uptake rate. Thus, the IGSM-CAM is a computationally efficient framework to explore the uncertainty in future global and regional climate change associated with uncertainty in the climate response and projected emissions. This study presents 21st century simulations based on two emissions scenarios (unconstrained scenario and stabilization scenario at 660 ppm CO2-equivalent and three sets of climate parameters. The chosen climate parameters provide a good approximation for the median, and the 5th and 95th percentiles of the probability distribution of 21st century global climate change. As such, this study presents new estimates of the 90% probability interval of regional climate change for different emissions scenarios. These results underscore the large uncertainty in regional climate change resulting from uncertainty in climate parameters and emissions, especially when it comes to changes in precipitation.

  19. Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... in a place over a period of time. Climate change is major change in temperature, rainfall, snow, or ... by natural factors or by human activities. Today climate changes are occurring at an increasingly rapid rate. Climate ...

  20. Uncertainty assessment of climate change adaptation options in urban flash floods

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zhou, Qianqian; Arnbjerg-Nielsen, Karsten

    2012-01-01

    Introduction. Adaptation is necessary to cope with the increasing flood risk in cities due to climate change in many regions of the world. Decision marking of adaptation strategies often requires a comprehensive risk-based economic analysis to indicate the net benefits of proposed options. Priority...

  1. Using Robust Decision Making to Address Climate Change Uncertainties in Water Quality Management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Results of robust decision making simulations show that both climate and land use change will need to be taken into account in order to implement BMP strategies that are more likely to meet the goals for the Patuxent river for both Phosphorus and Nitrogen.

  2. Sources of uncertainty in modeling the glaciohydrological response of a Karakoram watershed to climate change

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ragettli, S.; Pellicciotti, F.; Bordoy, R.; Immerzeel, W.W.

    2013-01-01

    In the headwater catchments of the main Asian rivers, glaciohydrological models are a useful tool to anticipate impacts of climatic changes. However, the reliability of their projections strongly depends on the quality and quantity of data that are available for parameter estimation, model calibrati

  3. Business and climate change: key challenges in the face of policy uncertainty and economic recession

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    A. Kolk; J. Pinkse

    2009-01-01

    Climate change is seen as the most pressing environmental problem of our time by many companies, policymakers and other stakeholders. It is currently also at the forefront of attention in view of attempts to conclude a successor to the Kyoto Protocol that expires in 2012. In bail-out plans and polic

  4. On solar geoengineering and climate uncertainty

    OpenAIRE

    MacMartin, Douglas G; Kravitz, Ben; Rasch, Philip J.

    2015-01-01

    Uncertain climate system response has been raised as a concern regarding solar geoengineering. We explore the effects of geoengineering on one source of climate system uncertainty by evaluating the intermodel spread across 12 climate models participating in the Geoengineering Model Intercomparison project. The model spread in simulations of climate change and the model spread in the response to solar geoengineering are not additive but rather partially cancel. That is, the model spread in reg...

  5. Using Statistical Downscaling to Quantify the GCM-Related Uncertainty in Regional Climate Change Scenarios: A Case Study of Swedish Precipitation

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2006-01-01

    There are a number of sources of uncertainty in regional climate change scenarios. When statistical downscaling is used to obtain regional climate change scenarios, the uncertainty may originate from the uncertainties in the global climate models used, the skill of the statistical model, and the forcing scenarios applied to the global climate model. The uncertainty associated with global climate models can be evaluated by examining the differences in the predictors and in the downscaled climate change scenarios based on a set of different global climate models. When standardized global climate model simulations such as the second phase of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP2) are used, the difference in the downscaled variables mainly reflects differences in the climate models and the natural variability in the simulated climates. It is proposed that the spread of the estimates can be taken as a measure of the uncertainty associated with global climate models. The proposed method is applied to the estimation of global-climate-model-related uncertainty in regional precipitation change scenarios in Sweden. Results from statistical downscaling based on 17 global climate models show that there is an overall increase in annual precipitation all over Sweden although a considerable spread of the changes in the precipitation exists. The general increase can be attributed to the increased large-scale precipitation and the enhanced westerly wind. The estimated uncertainty is nearly independent of region. However, there is a seasonal dependence. The estimates for winter show the highest level of confidence, while the estimates for summer show the least.

  6. Uncertainties in Predicting Tourist Flows Under Scenarios of Climate Change. Editorial Essay

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tourism is largely dependent on climatic and natural resources. For example, 'warmer' climates generally constitute preferred environments for recreation and leisure, and natural resources such as fresh water, biodiversity, beaches or landscapes are essential preconditions for tourism. Global environmental change threatens these foundations of tourism through climate change, modifications of global biogeochemical cycles, land alteration, the loss of non-renewable resources, unsustainable use of renewable resources and loss of biodiversity. This has raised concerns that tourist flows will change to the advantage or disadvantage of destinations, which is of major concern to local and national economies, as tourism is one of the largest economic sectors of the world, and of great importance for many destinations. In consequence, an increasing number of publications have sought to analyse travel flows in relation to climatic and socio-economic parameters. The ultimate goal has been to develop scenarios for future travel flows, possibly including 'most at risk destinations', both in economic and in environmental terms. Such scenarios are meant to help the tourist industry in planning future operations, and they are of importance in developing plans for adaptation

  7. Uncertainties in predicting species distributions under climate change: a case study using Tetranychus evansi (Acari: Tetranychidae, a widespread agricultural pest.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christine N Meynard

    Full Text Available Many species are shifting their distributions due to climate change and to increasing international trade that allows dispersal of individuals across the globe. In the case of agricultural pests, such range shifts may heavily impact agriculture. Species distribution modelling may help to predict potential changes in pest distributions. However, these modelling strategies are subject to large uncertainties coming from different sources. Here we used the case of the tomato red spider mite (Tetranychus evansi, an invasive pest that affects some of the most important agricultural crops worldwide, to show how uncertainty may affect forecasts of the potential range of the species. We explored three aspects of uncertainty: (1 species prevalence; (2 modelling method; and (3 variability in environmental responses between mites belonging to two invasive clades of T. evansi. Consensus techniques were used to forecast the potential range of the species under current and two different climate change scenarios for 2080, and variance between model projections were mapped to identify regions of high uncertainty. We revealed large predictive variations linked to all factors, although prevalence had a greater influence than the statistical model once the best modelling strategies were selected. The major areas threatened under current conditions include tropical countries in South America and Africa, and temperate regions in North America, the Mediterranean basin and Australia. Under future scenarios, the threat shifts towards northern Europe and some other temperate regions in the Americas, whereas tropical regions in Africa present a reduced risk. Analysis of niche overlap suggests that the current differential distribution of mites of the two clades of T. evansi can be partially attributed to environmental niche differentiation. Overall this study shows how consensus strategies and analysis of niche overlap can be used jointly to draw conclusions on invasive

  8. Uncertainties in predicting species distributions under climate change: a case study using Tetranychus evansi (Acari: Tetranychidae), a widespread agricultural pest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meynard, Christine N; Migeon, Alain; Navajas, Maria

    2013-01-01

    Many species are shifting their distributions due to climate change and to increasing international trade that allows dispersal of individuals across the globe. In the case of agricultural pests, such range shifts may heavily impact agriculture. Species distribution modelling may help to predict potential changes in pest distributions. However, these modelling strategies are subject to large uncertainties coming from different sources. Here we used the case of the tomato red spider mite (Tetranychus evansi), an invasive pest that affects some of the most important agricultural crops worldwide, to show how uncertainty may affect forecasts of the potential range of the species. We explored three aspects of uncertainty: (1) species prevalence; (2) modelling method; and (3) variability in environmental responses between mites belonging to two invasive clades of T. evansi. Consensus techniques were used to forecast the potential range of the species under current and two different climate change scenarios for 2080, and variance between model projections were mapped to identify regions of high uncertainty. We revealed large predictive variations linked to all factors, although prevalence had a greater influence than the statistical model once the best modelling strategies were selected. The major areas threatened under current conditions include tropical countries in South America and Africa, and temperate regions in North America, the Mediterranean basin and Australia. Under future scenarios, the threat shifts towards northern Europe and some other temperate regions in the Americas, whereas tropical regions in Africa present a reduced risk. Analysis of niche overlap suggests that the current differential distribution of mites of the two clades of T. evansi can be partially attributed to environmental niche differentiation. Overall this study shows how consensus strategies and analysis of niche overlap can be used jointly to draw conclusions on invasive threat

  9. Modelling adaptation to climate change of Ecuadorian agriculture and associated water resources: uncertainties in coastal and highland cropping systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruiz-Ramos, Margarita; Bastidas, Wellington; Cóndor, Amparo; Villacís, Marcos; Calderón, Marco; Herrera, Mario; Zambrano, José Luis; Lizaso, Jon; Hernández, Carlos; Rodríguez, Alfredo; Capa-Morocho, Mirian

    2016-04-01

    Climate change threatens sustainability of farms and associated water resources in Ecuador. Although the last IPCC report (AR5) provides a general framework for adaptation, , impact assessment and especially adaptation analysis should be site-specific, taking into account both biophysical and social aspects. The objective of this study is to analyse the climate change impacts and to sustainable adaptations to optimize the crop yield. Furthermore is also aimed to weave agronomical and hydrometeorological aspects, to improve the modelling of the coastal ("costa") and highland ("sierra") cropping systems in Ecuador, from the agricultural production and water resources points of view. The final aim is to support decision makers, at national and local institutions, for technological implementation of structural adaptation strategies, and to support farmers for their autonomous adaptation actions to cope with the climate change impacts and that allow equal access to resources and appropriate technologies. . A diagnosis of the current situation in terms of data availability and reliability was previously done, and the main sources of uncertainty for agricultural projections have been identified: weather data, especially precipitation projections, soil data below the upper 30 cm, and equivalent experimental protocol for ecophysiological crop field measurements. For reducing these uncertainties, several methodologies are being discussed. This study was funded by PROMETEO program from Ecuador through SENESCYT (M. Ruiz-Ramos contract), and by the project COOP-XV-25 funded by Universidad Politécnica de Madrid.

  10. Spatial and temporal distribution of long term public policy costs under uncertainty, the case of climate change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Because of the inertia of the climate system, policy makers cannot avoid making early decisions regarding climate change in a sea of uncertainties. In this context, the very legitimacy of economic analysis to tackle such questions, and in particular the underlying equity issues (who pays for climate mitigation? when?) faces widespread skepticism. This thesis aims at demonstrating how public economy still remains a powerful tool to try and put some rationale into the debate, by checking the internal consistency of the different discourses, and by providing robust insights, if not definitive answers, into climate decisions. We use a set of compact integrated climate policy optimization models to progressively introduce, articulate, and assess numerically the prominent issues at stake. We obtain three main results. We first demonstrate that the so-called timing debate between short term and long term action cannot be reduced to a mere dispute over discount rate. Given the high uncertainties surrounding climate change indeed, the margins of freedom we pass on to future generations, and in particular the technical and institutional systems we transmit, become more important than the discount rate value. Secondly, we apply the various emission quota allocation rules proposed in the literature for the enlargement of annex B to developing economies. We show that the distributive outcome of these rules depends critically on ex ante assumptions about future economic and emission growth. Therefrom, we conclude that a careful design of the institutions surrounding the tradable permits market is a necessary condition to enhance the systems robustness. Last, on a broader perspective, this thesis illustrates the complementarity between ethics and economics: though the economist does not have per se a superior word about what is fair, his toolbox is powerful enough to show how some intuitively appealing ideas, such as a zero discount rate to take care of both present and future

  11. Uncertainty Quantification in Climate Modeling and Projection

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Qian, Yun; Jackson, Charles S.; Giorgi, Filippo; Booth, Ben; Duan, Qingyun; Forest , Chris; Higdon, Dave; Hou, Zhangshuan; Huerta, Gabriel

    2016-05-01

    The projection of future climate is one of the most complex problems undertaken by the scientific community. Although scientists have been striving to better understand the physical basis of the climate system and to improve climate models, the overall uncertainty in projections of future climate has not been significantly reduced (e.g., from the IPCC AR4 to AR5). With the rapid increase of complexity in Earth system models, reducing uncertainties in climate projections becomes extremely challenging. Since uncertainties always exist in climate models, interpreting the strengths and limitations of future climate projections is key to evaluating risks, and climate change information for use in Vulnerability, Impact, and Adaptation (VIA) studies should be provided with both well-characterized and well-quantified uncertainty. The workshop aimed at providing participants, many of them from developing countries, information on strategies to quantify the uncertainty in climate model projections and assess the reliability of climate change information for decision-making. The program included a mixture of lectures on fundamental concepts in Bayesian inference and sampling, applications, and hands-on computer laboratory exercises employing software packages for Bayesian inference, Markov Chain Monte Carlo methods, and global sensitivity analyses. The lectures covered a range of scientific issues underlying the evaluation of uncertainties in climate projections, such as the effects of uncertain initial and boundary conditions, uncertain physics, and limitations of observational records. Progress in quantitatively estimating uncertainties in hydrologic, land surface, and atmospheric models at both regional and global scales was also reviewed. The application of Uncertainty Quantification (UQ) concepts to coupled climate system models is still in its infancy. The Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP) multi-model ensemble currently represents the primary data for

  12. Climate change and forests of the future: Managing in the face of uncertainty

    Science.gov (United States)

    Millar, C.I.; Stephenson, N.L.; Stephens, S.L.

    2007-01-01

    We offer a conceptual framework for managing forested ecosystems under an assumption that future environments will be different from present but that we cannot be certain about the specifics of change. We encourage flexible approaches that promote reversible and incremental steps, and that favor ongoing learning and capacity to modify direction as situations change. We suggest that no single solution fits all future challenges, especially in the context of changing climates, and that the best strategy is to mix different approaches for different situations. Resources managers will be challenged to integrate adaptation strategies (actions that help ecosystems accommodate changes adaptively) and mitigation strategies (actions that enable ecosystems to reduce anthropogenic influences on global climate) into overall plans. Adaptive strategies include resistance options (forestall impacts and protect highly valued resources), resilience options (improve the capacity of ecosystems to return to desired conditions after disturbance), and response options (facilitate transition of ecosystems from current to new conditions). Mitigation strategies include options to sequester carbon and reduce overall greenhouse gas emissions. Priority-setting approaches (e.g., triage), appropriate for rapidly changing conditions and for situations where needs are greater than available capacity to respond, will become increasingly important in the future. ?? 2007 by the Ecological Society of America.

  13. Climate policy uncertainty and investment risk

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2007-06-21

    Our climate is changing. This is certain. Less certain, however, is the timing and magnitude of climate change, and the cost of transition to a low-carbon world. Therefore, many policies and programmes are still at a formative stage, and policy uncertainty is very high. This book identifies how climate change policy uncertainty may affect investment behaviour in the power sector. For power companies, where capital stock is intensive and long-lived, those risks rank among the biggest and can create an incentive to delay investment. Our analysis results show that the risk premiums of climate change uncertainty can add 40% of construction costs of the plant for power investors, and 10% of price surcharges for the electricity end-users. This publication tells what can be done in policy design to reduce these costs. Incorporating the results of quantitative analysis, this publication also shows the sensitivity of different power sector investment decisions to different risks. It compares the effects of climate policy uncertainty with energy market uncertainty, showing the relative importance of these sources of risk for different technologies in different market types. Drawing on extensive consultation with power companies and financial investors, it also assesses the implications for policy makers, allowing the key messages to be transferred into policy designs. This book is a useful tool for governments to improve climate policy mechanisms and create more certainty for power investors.

  14. Characterizing Vegetation Model Skill and Uncertainty in Simulated Ecosystem Response to Climate Change in the United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drapek, R. J.; Kim, J. B.

    2013-12-01

    We simulated ecosystem response to climate change in the USA and Canada at a 5 arc-minute grid resolution using the MC1 dynamic global vegetation model and nine CMIP3 future climate projections as input. The climate projections were produced by 3 GCMs simulating 3 SRES emissions scenarios. We examined MC1 outputs for the conterminous USA by summarizing them by EPA level II and III ecoregions to characterize model skill and evaluate the magnitude and uncertainties of simulated ecosystem response to climate change. First, we evaluated model skill by comparing outputs from the recent historical period with benchmark datasets. Distribution of potential natural vegetation simulated by MC1 was compared with Kuchler's map. Above ground live carbon simulated by MC1 was compared with the National Biomass and Carbon Dataset. Fire return intervals calculated by MC1 were compared with maximum and minimum values compiled for the United States. Each EPA Level III Ecoregion was scored for average agreement with corresponding benchmark data and an average score was calculated for all three types of output. Greatest agreement with benchmark data happened in the Western Cordillera, the Ozark / Ouachita-Appalachian Forests, and the Southeastern USA Plains (EPA Level II Ecoregions). The lowest agreement happened in the Everglades and the Tamaulipas-Texas Semiarid Plain. For simulated ecosystem response to future climate projections we examined MC1 output for shifts in vegetation type, vegetation carbon, runoff, and biomass consumed by fire. Each ecoregion was scored for the amount of change from historical conditions for each variable and an average score was calculated. Smallest changes were forecast for Western Cordillera and Marine West Coast Forest ecosystems. Largest changes were forecast for the Cold Deserts, the Mixed Wood Plains, and the Central USA Plains. By combining scores of model skill for the historical period for each EPA Level 3 Ecoregion with scores representing the

  15. Transformation to near-natural forest management, climate change and uncertainty

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schou, Erik

    Currently transformation from even-aged management to near-natural forest management is being considered or undertaken throughout the Atlantic region of Europe. What in general lies in this transformation is the desire for a higher degree of utilisation in forest management of the natural processes...... inherent in the forest ecosystem. The motivations for transforming involve economic, biological and social values. At the same time, potential climate changes are expected to change growing conditions of tree species – possibly having a high impact on future forest growth. The purpose of this dissertation......, the studies of the dissertation analysed changes in stand structure and the choice of species at the stand and forest level. Only the value of timber was considered. Both optimisation and simulation approaches have been applied in the dissertation. Methods include dynamic programming, evolution algorithms...

  16. Uncertainty in climate science and climate policy

    OpenAIRE

    Rougier, Jonathan; Crucifix, Michel

    2014-01-01

    This essay, written by a statistician and a climate scientist, describes our view of the gap that exists between current practice in mainstream climate science, and the practical needs of policymakers charged with exploring possible interventions in the context of climate change. By `mainstream' we mean the type of climate science that dominates in universities and research centres, which we will term `academic' climate science, in contrast to `policy' climate science; aspects of this distinc...

  17. On solar geoengineering and climate uncertainty

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    MacMartin, Douglas; Kravitz, Benjamin S.; Rasch, Philip J.

    2015-09-03

    Uncertainty in the climate system response has been raised as a concern regarding solar geoengineering. Here we show that model projections of regional climate change outcomes may have greater agreement under solar geoengineering than with CO2 alone. We explore the effects of geoengineering on one source of climate system uncertainty by evaluating the inter-model spread across 12 climate models participating in the Geoengineering Model Intercomparison project (GeoMIP). The model spread in regional temperature and precipitation changes is reduced with CO2 and a solar reduction, in comparison to the case with increased CO2 alone. That is, the intermodel spread in predictions of climate change and the model spread in the response to solar geoengineering are not additive but rather partially cancel. Furthermore, differences in efficacy explain most of the differences between models in their temperature response to an increase in CO2 that is offset by a solar reduction. These conclusions are important for clarifying geoengineering risks.

  18. Climate Change Technology R&D Portfolio Decision Making Under Uncertainty

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Baker, E.; Keisler, J.; Chon, H.

    2008-11-17

    In this project we have completed, or are in the process of, collecting and analyzing information on seven energy technologies – solar photovoltaics, nuclear power, carbon capture and storage, electricity from biomass, liquid bio-fuels, and batteries – in regards to their potential impact on reducing greenhouse gas emissions. We have collected expert elicitations, relating U.S. government funding trajectories to probabilities of success. We then used MiniCAM, a technologically-detailed Integrated Assessnent Model to determine the impact on the marginal cost of reducing greenhouse gas emissions, if the technologies were successful. Finally, we have performed initial analysis on portfolios of technologies. This project has partially supported nine papers, either published, under review, or under preparation for such journals as Energy Economics, The Energy Journal, Climatic Change, Management Science, and Transportation Research.

  19. Scenario and modelling uncertainty in global mean temperature change derived from emission-driven global climate models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. B. B. Booth

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available We compare future changes in global mean temperature in response to different future scenarios which, for the first time, arise from emission-driven rather than concentration-driven perturbed parameter ensemble of a global climate model (GCM. These new GCM simulations sample uncertainties in atmospheric feedbacks, land carbon cycle, ocean physics and aerosol sulphur cycle processes. We find broader ranges of projected temperature responses arising when considering emission rather than concentration-driven simulations (with 10–90th percentile ranges of 1.7 K for the aggressive mitigation scenario, up to 3.9 K for the high-end, business as usual scenario. A small minority of simulations resulting from combinations of strong atmospheric feedbacks and carbon cycle responses show temperature increases in excess of 9 K (RCP8.5 and even under aggressive mitigation (RCP2.6 temperatures in excess of 4 K. While the simulations point to much larger temperature ranges for emission-driven experiments, they do not change existing expectations (based on previous concentration-driven experiments on the timescales over which different sources of uncertainty are important. The new simulations sample a range of future atmospheric concentrations for each emission scenario. Both in the case of SRES A1B and the Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs, the concentration scenarios used to drive GCM ensembles, lies towards the lower end of our simulated distribution. This design decision (a legacy of previous assessments is likely to lead concentration-driven experiments to under-sample strong feedback responses in future projections. Our ensemble of emission-driven simulations span the global temperature response of the CMIP5 emission-driven simulations, except at the low end. Combinations of low climate sensitivity and low carbon cycle feedbacks lead to a number of CMIP5 responses to lie below our ensemble range. The ensemble simulates a number of high

  20. Decision strategies for handling the uncertainty of future extreme rainfall under the influence of climate change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gregersen, Ida Bülow; Arnbjerg-Nielsen, Karsten

    2012-01-01

    are characterized by long technical lifetimes and high, unrecoverable construction costs. One of the most important barriers for the initiation and implementation of the adaptation strategies is therefore the uncertainty when predicting the magnitude of the extreme rainfall in the future. This challenge is explored...... through the application and discussion of three different theoretical decision support strategies: the precautionary principle, the minimax strategy and Bayesian decision support. The reviewed decision support strategies all proved valuable for addressing the identified uncertainties, at best applied...

  1. On solar geoengineering and climate uncertainty

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacMartin, Douglas G.; Kravitz, Ben; Rasch, Philip J.

    2015-09-01

    Uncertain climate system response has been raised as a concern regarding solar geoengineering. We explore the effects of geoengineering on one source of climate system uncertainty by evaluating the intermodel spread across 12 climate models participating in the Geoengineering Model Intercomparison project. The model spread in simulations of climate change and the model spread in the response to solar geoengineering are not additive but rather partially cancel. That is, the model spread in regional temperature and precipitation changes is reduced with CO2 and a solar reduction, in comparison to the case with increased CO2 alone. Furthermore, differences between models in their efficacy (the relative global mean temperature effect of solar versus CO2 radiative forcing) explain most of the regional differences between models in their response to an increased CO2 concentration that is offset by a solar reduction. These conclusions are important for clarifying geoengineering risks regarding uncertainty.

  2. Decision strategies for handling the uncertainty of future extreme rainfall under influence of climate change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gregersen, Ida Bülow; Arnbjerg-Nielsen, Karsten

    2011-01-01

    are characterized by long technical lifetimes and high, unrecoverable construction costs. The most important barrier for the initiation and implementation of the adaptation strategies is therefore the uncertainty when predicting the magnitude of the extreme rainfall in the future. This challenge is explored through...... the application and discussion of three different theoretical decision support strategies: The precautionary principle, the minimax strategy and Bayesian decision support. The reviewed decision support strategies all proved valuable for addressing the identified uncertainties, at best applied together as they all...

  3. Climate change, uncertainty, and resilient fisheries: Institutional responses through integrative science

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Miller, K.; Charles, A.; Barange, M.;

    2010-01-01

    in those complex, interlinked systems. The reality of these uncertainties and linkages leads to a recognition of the need for robust and adaptive management approaches in order to enhance system resilience. To this end, the paper proposes a focus on stronger moves to ‘integrative science’ methods...

  4. Uncertainty in projected climate change caused by methodological discrepancy in estimating CO2 emissions from fossil fuel combustion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quilcaille, Yann; Gasser, Thomas; Ciais, Philippe; Lecocq, Franck; Janssens-Maenhout, Greet; Mohr, Steve; Andres, Robert J.; Bopp, Laurent

    2016-04-01

    There are different methodologies to estimate CO2 emissions from fossil fuel combustion. The term "methodology" refers to the way subtypes of fossil fuels are aggregated and their implied emissions factors. This study investigates how the choice of a methodology impacts historical and future CO2 emissions, and ensuing climate change projections. First, we use fossil fuel extraction data from the Geologic Resources Supply-Demand model of Mohr et al. (2015). We compare four different methodologies to transform amounts of fossil fuel extracted into CO2 emissions based on the methodologies used by Mohr et al. (2015), CDIAC, EDGARv4.3, and IPCC 1996. We thus obtain 4 emissions pathways, for the historical period 1750-2012, that we compare to the emissions timeseries from EDGARv4.3 (1970-2012) and CDIACv2015 (1751-2011). Using the 3 scenarios by Mohr et al. (2015) for projections till 2300 under the assumption of an Early (Low emission), Best Guess or Late (High emission) extraction peaking, we obtain 12 different pathways of CO2 emissions over 1750-2300. Second, we extend these CO2-only pathways to all co-emitted and climatically active species. Co-emission ratios for CH4, CO, BC, OC, SO2, VOC, N2O, NH3, NOx are calculated on the basis of the EDGAR v4.3 dataset, and are then used to produce complementary pathways of non-CO2 emissions from fossil fuel combustion only. Finally, the 12 emissions scenarios are integrated using the compact Earth system model OSCAR v2.2, in order to quantify the impact of the selected driver onto climate change projections. We find historical cumulative fossil fuel CO2 emissions from 1750 to 2012 ranging from 365 GtC to 392 GtC depending upon the methodology used to convert fossil fuel into CO2 emissions. We notice a drastic increase of the impact of the methodology in the projections. For the High emission scenario with Late fuel extraction peaking, cumulated CO2 emissions from 1700 to 2100 range from 1505 GtC to 1685 GtC; this corresponds

  5. Accounting for global-mean warming and scaling uncertainties in climate change impact studies: application to a regulated lake system

    OpenAIRE

    B. Hingray; Mouhous, N.; Mezghani, A.; Bogner, K.; Schaefli, B.; Musy, A.

    2007-01-01

    International audience A probabilistic assessment of climate change and related impacts should consider a large range of potential future climate scenarios. State-of-the-art climate models, especially coupled atmosphere-ocean general circulation models and Regional Climate Models (RCMs) cannot, however, be used to simulate such a large number of scenarios. This paper presents a methodology for obtaining future climate scenarios through a simple scaling methodology. The projections of sever...

  6. Understanding and predicting changing use of groundwater with climate and other uncertainties: a Bayesian approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costa, F. A. F.; Keir, G.; McIntyre, N.; Bulovic, N.

    2015-12-01

    Most groundwater supply bores in Australia do not have flow metering equipment and so regional groundwater abstraction rates are not well known. Past estimates of unmetered abstraction for regional numerical groundwater modelling typically have not attempted to quantify the uncertainty inherent in the estimation process in detail. In particular, the spatial properties of errors in the estimates are almost always neglected. Here, we apply Bayesian spatial models to estimate these abstractions at a regional scale, using the state-of-the-art computationally inexpensive approaches of integrated nested Laplace approximation (INLA) and stochastic partial differential equations (SPDE). We examine a case study in the Condamine Alluvium aquifer in southern Queensland, Australia; even in this comparatively data-rich area with extensive groundwater abstraction for agricultural irrigation, approximately 80% of bores do not have reliable metered flow records. Additionally, the metering data in this area are characterised by complicated statistical features, such as zero-valued observations, non-normality, and non-stationarity. While this precludes the use of many classical spatial estimation techniques, such as kriging, our model (using the R-INLA package) is able to accommodate these features. We use a joint model to predict both probability and magnitude of abstraction from bores in space and time, and examine the effect of a range of high-resolution gridded meteorological covariates upon the predictive ability of the model. Deviance Information Criterion (DIC) scores are used to assess a range of potential models, which reward good model fit while penalising excessive model complexity. We conclude that maximum air temperature (as a reasonably effective surrogate for evapotranspiration) is the most significant single predictor of abstraction rate; and that a significant spatial effect exists (represented by the SPDE approximation of a Gaussian random field with a Mat

  7. Climate change

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Marchal, V.; Dellink, R.; Vuuren, D.P. van; Clapp, C.; Chateau, J.; Magné, B.; Lanzi, E.; Vliet, J. van

    2012-01-01

    This chapter analyses the policy implications of the climate change challenge. Are current emission reduction pledges made in Copenhagen/Cancun enough to stabilise the climate and limit global average temperature increase to 2 oC? If not, what will the consequences be? What alternative growth pathwa

  8. Climate change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Based on contributions on 120 French and foreign scientists representing different disciplines (mathematics, physics, mechanics, chemistry, biology, medicine, and so on), this report proposes an overview of the scientific knowledge and debate about climate change. It discusses the various indicators of climate evolution (temperatures, ice surfaces, sea level, biological indicators) and the various factors which may contribute to climate evolution (greenhouse gases, solar radiation). It also comments climate evolutions in the past as they can be investigated through some geological, thermal or geochemical indicators. Then, the authors describe and discuss the various climate mechanisms: solar activity, oceans, ice caps, greenhouse gases. In a third part, the authors discuss the different types of climate models which differ by the way they describe processes, and the current validation process for these models

  9. Real options analysis for photovoltaic project under climate uncertainty

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Kyeongseok; Kim, Sejong; Kim, Hyoungkwan

    2016-08-01

    The decision on photovoltaic project depends on the level of climate environments. Changes in temperature and insolation affect photovoltaic output. It is important for investors to consider future climate conditions for determining investments on photovoltaic projects. We propose a real options-based framework to assess economic feasibility of photovoltaic project under climate change. The framework supports investors to evaluate climate change impact on photovoltaic projects under future climate uncertainty.

  10. Examining uncertainties in the linkage between global climate change and potential human health impacts in the western USA -- Hexachlorobenzene (HCB) as a case study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    McKone, T.E.; Daniels, J.I. [Lawrence Livermore National Lab., CA (United States); Goldman, M. [Univ. of California, Davis, CA (United States)

    1994-09-30

    Industrial societies have altered the earth`s environment in ways that could have important, long-term ecological, economic, and health implications. In this paper the authors define, characterize, and evaluate parameter and outcome uncertainties using a model that links global climate change with predictions of chemical exposure and human health risk in the western region of the US. They illustrate the impact of uncertainty about global climate change on such potential secondary outcomes using as a case study the public health consequences related to the behavior environmentally of hexachlorobenzene (HCB), an ubiquitous multimedia pollutant. They begin by constructing a matrix that reveals the linkage between global environmental change and potential regional human-health effects that might be induced directly and/or indirectly by HCB released into the air and water. This matrix is useful for translating critical uncertainties into terms that can be understood and used by policy makers to formulate strategies against potential adverse irreversible health and economic consequences. Specifically, the authors employ a combined uncertainty/sensitivity analysis to investigate how the HCB that has been released is affected by increasing atmospheric temperature and the accompanying climate alterations that are anticipated and how such uncertainty propagates to affect the expected magnitude and calculational precision of estimates of associated potential human exposures and health effects.

  11. An integrated assessment modeling framework for uncertainty studies in global and regional climate change: the MIT IGSM-CAM (version 1.0)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monier, E.; Scott, J. R.; Sokolov, A. P.; Forest, C. E.; Schlosser, C. A.

    2013-12-01

    This paper describes a computationally efficient framework for uncertainty studies in global and regional climate change. In this framework, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Integrated Global System Model (IGSM), an integrated assessment model that couples an Earth system model of intermediate complexity to a human activity model, is linked to the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) Community Atmosphere Model (CAM). Since the MIT IGSM-CAM framework (version 1.0) incorporates a human activity model, it is possible to analyze uncertainties in emissions resulting from both uncertainties in the underlying socio-economic characteristics of the economic model and in the choice of climate-related policies. Another major feature is the flexibility to vary key climate parameters controlling the climate system response to changes in greenhouse gases and aerosols concentrations, e.g., climate sensitivity, ocean heat uptake rate, and strength of the aerosol forcing. The IGSM-CAM is not only able to realistically simulate the present-day mean climate and the observed trends at the global and continental scale, but it also simulates ENSO variability with realistic time scales, seasonality and patterns of SST anomalies, albeit with stronger magnitudes than observed. The IGSM-CAM shares the same general strengths and limitations as the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 3 (CMIP3) models in simulating present-day annual mean surface temperature and precipitation. Over land, the IGSM-CAM shows similar biases to the NCAR Community Climate System Model (CCSM) version 3, which shares the same atmospheric model. This study also presents 21st century simulations based on two emissions scenarios (unconstrained scenario and stabilization scenario at 660 ppm CO2-equivalent) similar to, respectively, the Representative Concentration Pathways RCP8.5 and RCP4.5 scenarios, and three sets of climate parameters. Results of the simulations with the chosen

  12. Invasive alien species in the food chain: Advancing risk assessment models to address climate change, economics and uncertainty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Darren Kriticos

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Pest risk maps illustrate where invasive alien arthropods, molluscs, pathogens, and weeds might become established, spread, and cause harm to natural and agricultural resources within a pest risk area. Such maps can be powerful tools to assist policymakers in matters of international trade, domestic quarantines, biosecurity surveillance, or pest-incursion responses. The International Pest Risk Mapping Workgroup (IPRMW is a group of ecologists, economists, modellers, and practising risk analysts who are committed to improving the methods used to estimate risks posed by invasive alien species to agricultural and natural resources. The group also strives to improve communication about pest risks to biosecurity, production, and natural-resource-sector stakeholders so that risks can be better managed. The IPRMW previously identified ten activities to improve pest risk assessment procedures, among these were: “improve representations of uncertainty, … expand communications with decision-makers on the interpretation and use of risk maps, … increase international collaboration, … incorporate climate change, … [and] study how human and biological dimensions interact” (Venette et al. 2010.

  13. Climate Change

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2005-01-01

    According to the National Academy of Sciences in American,the Earth's surface temperature has risen by about 1 degree Fahrenheit in the past century, with accelerated warming during the past two decades. There is new and stronger evidence that most of the warming over the last 50 years is attributable to human activities.Human activities have altered the chemical composition of the atmosphere through the buildup of greenhouse gases-primarily carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrous oxide. The heat-trapping property of these gases is undisputed although uncertainties exist about exactly how earth's climate responds to them.

  14. Climatic changes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Majgaard Krarup, Jonna

    2014-01-01

    According to Cleo Paskal climatic changes are environmental changes. They are global, but their impact is local, and manifests them selves in the landscape, in our cities, in open urban spaces, and in everyday life. The landscape and open public spaces will in many cases be the sites where...... measurements to handle climatic changes will be positioned and enacted. Measurements taken are mostly adaptive or aimed to secure and protect existing values, buildings, infrastructure etc., but will in many cases also affects functions, meaning and peoples identification with the landscape and the open urban...... be addressed in order to develop and support social sustainability and identification. This paper explore and discuss how the handling of climatic changes in landscape and open urban spaces might hold a potential for them to become common goods....

  15. Climate Change

    OpenAIRE

    The IJOEM

    2010-01-01

    This chapter analyses the policy implications of the climate change challenge. Are current emission reduction pledges made in Copenhagen/Cancun enough to stabilise the climate and limit global average temperature increase to 2 oC? If not, what will the consequences be? What alternative growth pathways could stabilise the global average atmospheric concentration of greenhouse gases (GHG) at 450 ppm, the level which has a 50% chance of keeping the temperature rise to 2 oC? What policies are nee...

  16. Efficient climate policies under technology and climate uncertainty

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This article explores efficient climate policies in terms of investment streams into fossil and renewable energy technologies. The investment decisions maximise social welfare while observing a probabilistic guardrail for global mean temperature rise under uncertain technology and climate parameters. Such a guardrail constitutes a chance constraint, and the resulting optimisation problem is an instance of chance constrained programming, not stochastic programming as often employed. Our analysis of a model of economic growth and endogenous technological change, MIND, suggests that stringent mitigation strategies cannot guarantee a very high probability of limiting warming to 2 oC since preindustrial time under current uncertainty about climate sensitivity and climate response time scale. Achieving the 2 oC temperature target with a probability P* of 75% requires drastic carbon dioxide emission cuts. This holds true even though we have assumed an aggressive mitigation policy on other greenhouse gases from, e.g., the agricultural sector. The emission cuts are deeper than estimated from a deterministic calculation with climate sensitivity fixed at the P* quantile of its marginal probability distribution (3.6 oC). We show that earlier and cumulatively larger investments into the renewable sector are triggered by including uncertainty in the technology and climate response time scale parameters. This comes at an additional GWP loss of 0.3%, resulting in a total loss of 0.8% GWP for observing the chance constraint. We obtained those results with a new numerical scheme to implement constrained welfare optimisation under uncertainty as a chance constrained programming problem in standard optimisation software such as GAMS. The scheme is able to incorporate multivariate non-factorial probability measures such as given by the joint distribution of climate sensitivity and response time. We demonstrate the scheme for the case of a four-dimensional parameter space capturing

  17. RECOVERY ACT - Methods for Decision under Technological Change Uncertainty and Risk Assessment for Integrated Assessment of Climate Change

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Webster, Mort D. [Pennsylvania State Univ., University Park, PA (United States). Dept. of Energy and Mineral Engineering

    2015-11-30

    This report presents the final outcomes and products of the project as performed both at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and subsequently at Pennsylvania State University. The research project can be divided into three main components: methodology development for decision-making under uncertainty, improving the resolution of the electricity sector to improve integrated assessment, and application of these methods to integrated assessment.

  18. RECOVERY ACT - Methods for Decision under Technological Change Uncertainty and Risk Assessment for Integrated Assessment of Climate Change

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Webster, Mort David [MIT

    2015-03-10

    This report presents the final outcomes and products of the project as performed at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The research project consists of three main components: methodology development for decision-making under uncertainty, improving the resolution of the electricity sector to improve integrated assessment, and application of these methods to integrated assessment. Results in each area is described in the report.

  19. Resilience of sewage services to climate change uncertainty: analysis of the management of sewer overflows in two Parisian suburban areas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rioust, E.; Deroubaix, J. F.; Barroca, B.; Bonierbale, T.; de Gouvello, B.; Deutsch, J. C.; Hubert, G.

    2009-04-01

    This paper considers the resilience perspective as an approach for understanding social and political vulnerabilities of urban services. The authors examine to what extend uncertainty due to climate change may affect the resilience of these urban services. The resilience perspective is increasingly used for analysing social groups' capacities to adapt to and live with disturbances. A lot of work on resilience has focused on the capacity to absorb shocks and still maintain functions. But there is also another aspect of resilience, which leads to take into account systems vulnerabilities and to aim at understanding their equilibrium and re-organization capacity. The purpose with this paper is to assess sewage systems capacities to adapt to climate change. Indeed, climate change could cause an increase of extreme rain events and, as a matter of consequence, an increase of sewer overflows and flooding of urbanised areas. Sewer systems have to cope with this change that may gravely affect urban planning. In recent studies of political science, risk management has been considered as a public policy involving and resulting from complex social, political and technical processes (Gilbert et al. 2003). From this point of view, the management of wastewaters and storm waters has to be considered not only as a technical but also as a political and a social system. Therefore, political science can be a fruitful perspective to understand the stakeholders perceptions of uncertainty and the way they are going to integrate this issue in their practices. The authors analyse the adaptive capacities of two sewer systems located in the Parisian suburban area. The chosen areas are highly populated. Each network is managed within a political and administrative unit called "Département". Both authorities of these "Départements" implement a public sewage service. Nonetheless these networks are connected and part of the greater Paris sewage policy. In both areas a real time control of

  20. Values and uncertainties in climate prediction, revisited.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parker, Wendy

    2014-06-01

    Philosophers continue to debate both the actual and the ideal roles of values in science. Recently, Eric Winsberg has offered a novel, model-based challenge to those who argue that the internal workings of science can and should be kept free from the influence of social values. He contends that model-based assignments of probability to hypotheses about future climate change are unavoidably influenced by social values. I raise two objections to Winsberg's argument, neither of which can wholly undermine its conclusion but each of which suggests that his argument exaggerates the influence of social values on estimates of uncertainty in climate prediction. I then show how a more traditional challenge to the value-free ideal seems tailor-made for the climate context. PMID:25051868

  1. Methodology for qualitative uncertainty assessment of climate impact indicators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Otto, Juliane; Keup-Thiel, Elke; Rechid, Diana; Hänsler, Andreas; Pfeifer, Susanne; Roth, Ellinor; Jacob, Daniela

    2016-04-01

    The FP7 project "Climate Information Portal for Copernicus" (CLIPC) is developing an integrated platform of climate data services to provide a single point of access for authoritative scientific information on climate change and climate change impacts. In this project, the Climate Service Center Germany (GERICS) has been in charge of the development of a methodology on how to assess the uncertainties related to climate impact indicators. Existing climate data portals mainly treat the uncertainties in two ways: Either they provide generic guidance and/or express with statistical measures the quantifiable fraction of the uncertainty. However, none of the climate data portals give the users a qualitative guidance how confident they can be in the validity of the displayed data. The need for such guidance was identified in CLIPC user consultations. Therefore, we aim to provide an uncertainty assessment that provides the users with climate impact indicator-specific guidance on the degree to which they can trust the outcome. We will present an approach that provides information on the importance of different sources of uncertainties associated with a specific climate impact indicator and how these sources affect the overall 'degree of confidence' of this respective indicator. To meet users requirements in the effective communication of uncertainties, their feedback has been involved during the development process of the methodology. Assessing and visualising the quantitative component of uncertainty is part of the qualitative guidance. As visual analysis method, we apply the Climate Signal Maps (Pfeifer et al. 2015), which highlight only those areas with robust climate change signals. Here, robustness is defined as a combination of model agreement and the significance of the individual model projections. Reference Pfeifer, S., Bülow, K., Gobiet, A., Hänsler, A., Mudelsee, M., Otto, J., Rechid, D., Teichmann, C. and Jacob, D.: Robustness of Ensemble Climate Projections

  2. Uncertainty in climate change impacts on basin-scale freshwater resources – preface to the special issue: the QUEST-GSI methodology and synthesis of results

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. C. Todd

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a preface to this Special Issue on the results of the QUEST-GSI (Global Scale Impacts project on climate change impacts on catchment scale water resources. A detailed description of the unified methodology, subsequently used in all studies in this issue, is provided. The project method involved running simulations of catchment-scale hydrology using a unified set of past and future climate scenarios, to enable a consistent analysis of the climate impacts around the globe. These scenarios include "policy-relevant" prescribed warming scenarios. This is followed by a synthesis of the key findings. Overall, the studies indicate that in most basins the models project substantial changes to river flow, beyond that observed in the historical record, but that in many cases there is considerable uncertainty in the magnitude and sign of the projected changes. The implications of this for adaptation activities are discussed.

  3. Conflict in a changing climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carleton, T.; Hsiang, S. M.; Burke, M.

    2016-05-01

    A growing body of research illuminates the role that changes in climate have had on violent conflict and social instability in the recent past. Across a diversity of contexts, high temperatures and irregular rainfall have been causally linked to a range of conflict outcomes. These findings can be paired with climate model output to generate projections of the impact future climate change may have on conflicts such as crime and civil war. However, there are large degrees of uncertainty in such projections, arising from (i) the statistical uncertainty involved in regression analysis, (ii) divergent climate model predictions, and (iii) the unknown ability of human societies to adapt to future climate change. In this article, we review the empirical evidence of the climate-conflict relationship, provide insight into the likely extent and feasibility of adaptation to climate change as it pertains to human conflict, and discuss new methods that can be used to provide projections that capture these three sources of uncertainty.

  4. Optimal Climate Protection Policies Under Uncertainty

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weber, M.; Barth, V.; Hasselmann, K.; Hooss, G.

    A cost-benefit analysis for greenhouse warming based on a globally integrated cou- pled climate-macro economic cost model SIAM2 (Structural Integrated Assessment Model) is used to compute optimal paths of global CO2 emissions. The aim of the model is to minimize the net time-integrated sum of climate damage and mitigation costs (or maximize the economic and social welfare). The climate model is repre- sented by a nonlinear impulse-response model (NICCS) calibrated against a coupled ocean-atmosphere general circulation model and a three-dimensional global carbon cycle model. The latest version of the economic module is based a macro economic growth model, which is designed to capture not only the interactions between cli- mate damages and economic development, but also the conflicting goals of individual firms and society (government). The model includes unemployment, limited fossil fuel resources, endogenous and stochastic exogenous technological development (unpre- dictable labor or fuel efficiency innovations of random impact amplitude at random points in time). One objective of the project is to examine optimal climate protection policies in the presence of uncertainty. A stochastic model is introduced to simulate the development of technology as well as climate change and climate damages. In re- sponse to this (stochastic) prediction, the fiscal policy is adjusted gradually in a series of discrete steps. The stochastic module includes probability-based methods, sensitiv- ity studies and formal szenario analysis.

  5. Downscaled climate change projections with uncertainty assessment over India using a high resolution multi-model approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Pankaj; Wiltshire, Andrew; Mathison, Camilla; Asharaf, Shakeel; Ahrens, Bodo; Lucas-Picher, Philippe; Christensen, Jens H; Gobiet, Andreas; Saeed, Fahad; Hagemann, Stefan; Jacob, Daniela

    2013-12-01

    This study presents the possible regional climate change over South Asia with a focus over India as simulated by three very high resolution regional climate models (RCMs). One of the most striking results is a robust increase in monsoon precipitation by the end of the 21st century but regional differences in strength. First the ability of RCMs to simulate the monsoon climate is analyzed. For this purpose all three RCMs are forced with ECMWF reanalysis data for the period 1989-2008 at a horizontal resolution of ~25 km. The results are compared against independent observations. In order to simulate future climate the models are driven by lateral boundary conditions from two global climate models (GCMs: ECHAM5-MPIOM and HadCM3) using the SRES A1B scenario, except for one RCM, which only used data from one GCM. The results are presented for the full transient simulation period 1970-2099 and also for several time slices. The analysis concentrates on precipitation and temperature over land. All models show a clear signal of gradually wide-spread warming throughout the 21st century. The ensemble-mean warming over India is 1.5°C at the end of 2050, whereas it is 3.9°C at the end of century with respect to 1970-1999. The pattern of projected precipitation changes shows considerable spatial variability, with an increase in precipitation over the peninsular of India and coastal areas and, either no change or decrease further inland. From the analysis of a larger ensemble of global climate models using the A1B scenario a wide spread warming (~3.2°C) and an overall increase (~8.5%) in mean monsoon precipitation by the end of the 21st century is very likely. The influence of the driving GCM on the projected precipitation change simulated with each RCM is as strong as the variability among the RCMs driven with one.

  6. Quantifying uncertainty in the impacts of climate change on river discharge in sub-catchments of the Yangtze and Yellow River Basins, China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. Xu

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Quantitative evaluations of the impacts of climate change on water resources are primarily constrained by uncertainty in climate projections from GCMs. In this study we assess uncertainty in the impacts of climate change on river discharge in two catchments of the Yangtze and Yellow River Basins that feature contrasting climate regimes (humid and semi-arid. Specifically we quantify uncertainty associated with GCM structure from a subset of CMIP3 AR4 GCMs (HadCM3, HadGEM1, CCSM3.0, IPSL, ECHAM5, CSIRO, CGCM3.1, SRES emissions scenarios (A1B, A2, B1, B2 and prescribed increases in global mean air temperature (1 °C to 6 °C. Climate projections, applied to semi-distributed hydrological models (SWAT 2005 in both catchments, indicate trends toward warmer and wetter conditions. For prescribed warming scenarios of 1 °C to 6 °C, linear increases in mean annual river discharge, relative to baseline (1961–1990, for the River Xiangxi and River Huangfuchuan are +9% and 11% per +1 °C respectively. Intra-annual changes include increases in flood (Q05 discharges for both rivers as well as a shift in the timing of flood discharges from summer to autumn and a rise (24 to 93% in dry season (Q95 discharge for the River Xiangxi. Differences in projections of mean annual river discharge between SRES emission scenarios using HadCM3 are comparatively minor for the River Xiangxi (13 to 17% rise from baseline but substantial (73 to 121% for the River Huangfuchuan. With one minor exception of a slight (−2% decrease in river discharge projected using HadGEM1 for the River Xiangxi, mean annual river discharge is projected to increase in both catchments under both the SRES A1B emission scenario and 2° rise in global mean air temperature using all AR4 GCMs on the CMIP3 subset. For the River Xiangxi, there is substantial uncertainty associated with GCM structure in the magnitude of the rise in flood (Q05 discharges (−1 to 41% under SRES A1B and −3 to 41% under 2

  7. Uncertainty in Model Predictions of Vibrio Vulnificus Response to Climate Variability and Change: A Chesapeake Bay Case Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Urquhart, Erin A.; Zaitchik, Benjamin F.; Waugh, Darryn W.; Guikema, Seth D.; Del Castillo, Carlos E.

    2014-01-01

    The effect that climate change and variability will have on waterborne bacteria is a topic of increasing concern for coastal ecosystems, including the Chesapeake Bay. Surface water temperature trends in the Bay indicate a warming pattern of roughly 0.3-0.4 C per decade over the past 30 years. It is unclear what impact future warming will have on pathogens currently found in the Bay, including Vibrio spp. Using historical environmental data, combined with three different statistical models of Vibrio vulnificus probability, we explore the relationship between environmental change and predicted Vibrio vulnificus presence in the upper Chesapeake Bay. We find that the predicted response of V. vulnificus probability to high temperatures in the Bay differs systematically between models of differing structure. As existing publicly available datasets are inadequate to determine which model structure is most appropriate, the impact of climatic change on the probability of V. vulnificus presence in the Chesapeake Bay remains uncertain. This result points to the challenge of characterizing climate sensitivity of ecological systems in which data are sparse and only statistical models of ecological sensitivity exist.

  8. Uncertainty in model predictions of Vibrio vulnificus response to climate variability and change: a Chesapeake Bay case study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erin A Urquhart

    Full Text Available The effect that climate change and variability will have on waterborne bacteria is a topic of increasing concern for coastal ecosystems, including the Chesapeake Bay. Surface water temperature trends in the Bay indicate a warming pattern of roughly 0.3-0.4°C per decade over the past 30 years. It is unclear what impact future warming will have on pathogens currently found in the Bay, including Vibrio spp. Using historical environmental data, combined with three different statistical models of Vibrio vulnificus probability, we explore the relationship between environmental change and predicted Vibrio vulnificus presence in the upper Chesapeake Bay. We find that the predicted response of V. vulnificus probability to high temperatures in the Bay differs systematically between models of differing structure. As existing publicly available datasets are inadequate to determine which model structure is most appropriate, the impact of climatic change on the probability of V. vulnificus presence in the Chesapeake Bay remains uncertain. This result points to the challenge of characterizing climate sensitivity of ecological systems in which data are sparse and only statistical models of ecological sensitivity exist.

  9. Quantifying the sources of uncertainty in upper air climate variables

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eghdamirad, Sajjad; Johnson, Fiona; Woldemeskel, Fitsum; Sharma, Ashish

    2016-04-01

    Future estimates of precipitation and streamflow are of utmost interest in hydrological climate change impact assessments. Just as important as the estimate itself, is the variance around the ensemble mean of the projections, this variance being defined as uncertainty in the context of this study. This uncertainty in the hydrological variables of interest is affected by uncertainty in upper air climate variables which are used in statistical downscaling of precipitation or streamflow. Here the extent of uncertainty in upper air climate variables has been assessed for a selection of commonly used atmospheric variables for downscaling, namely, geopotential height and its difference in the north-south direction, specific humidity, and eastward and northward wind speeds. Generally, in statistical downscaling, no consideration is usually given to the uncertainty of different individual variables, which can result in biases in future climate simulations. The approach of quantifying uncertainty presented here has the potential to enable modelers to better formulate downscaling approaches, leading to more accurate characterization of future precipitation and its associated uncertainty. Based on the spread of multiple-model outputs, an uncertainty measure called square root of error variance has been used to quantify the contribution of different sources of uncertainty (i.e., models, scenarios, and ensembles) in monthly future climate projections in the 21st century at the 500 hPa and 850 hPa pressure levels. It has been shown that the different climate variables and levels of the atmosphere have distinct patterns in terms of their total future uncertainty and the contributions from the three sources. Scenario and model uncertainties in general contribute reasonably evenly to total uncertainty, with smaller contributions from the initial condition ensembles.

  10. Derivation of RCM-driven potential evapotranspiration for hydrological climate change impact analysis in Great Britain: a comparison of methods and associated uncertainty in future projections

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Prudhomme

    2013-04-01

    the range of uncertainty defined by the ensemble of 12 PET equations. The changes show a clear northwest–southeast gradient of PET increase with largest (smallest changes in the northwest in January (July and October respectively. However, the range in magnitude of PET changes due to the choice of PET method shown in this study for Great Britain suggests that PET uncertainty is a challenge facing the assessment of climate change impact on hydrology mostly ignored up to now.

  11. Climate Change: Basic Information

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... are here: EPA Home Climate Change Basic Information Climate Change: Basic Information On This Page Climate change ... We can make a difference How is the climate changing in the U.S.? Observations across the United ...

  12. How to manage uncertainty in future Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) scenarios addressing the effect of climate change in crop production

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Niero, Monia; Ingvordsen, Cathrine Heinz; Bagger Jørgensen, Rikke;

    2015-01-01

    ) level for the selected crop and performance of Life Cycle Impact Assessment (LCIA) including normalization and contribution analysis, in order to identify the focus points in terms of impact categories, unit processes and substances; (2) identification of the main deviations from the baseline scenario......When Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) is used to provide insights on how to pursue future food demand, it faces the challenge to describe scenarios of the future in which the environmental impacts occur. In the case of future crop production, the effects of climate change should be considered...... climate, soil, water loss and production parameters. Secondly, the handling of these factors in the inventory modeling is discussed and finally implemented in the case study. Our approach follows a 3-step procedure consisting of: (1) definition of a baseline scenario at the Life Cycle Inventory (LCI...

  13. Confronting Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mintzer, Irving M.

    1992-06-01

    This book, which was published in time for the Earth Summit in Brazil in June 1992, is likely to make a huge impact on the political and economic agendas of international policy makers. It summarizes the scientific findings of Working Group I of the IPCC in the first part of the book. While acknowledging the uncertainties in subsequent chapters, it challenges and expands upon the existing views on how we should tackle the problems of climate change.

  14. Assessing the potential impact and uncertainty of climate, land use change and demographic trends on malaria transmission in Africa by 2050.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tompkins, Adrian; Caporaso, Luca; Colon-Gonzalez, Felipe

    2014-05-01

    Previous analyses of data has shown that in addition to variability and longer term trends in climate variables, both land use change (LUC) and population mobility and urbanisation trends can impact malaria transmission intensities and socio-economic burden. With the new regional VECTRI dynamical malaria model it is now possible to examine these in an integrated modelling framework. Using 5 global climate models which were bias corrected using the WATCH data for the recent ISIMIP project, the four Representative Concentration Pathways (RCP), population projections disaggregated from the Shared Socioeconomic Pathways (SSP) and Land use change from the HYDE model output used in the CMIP5 process, we construct a multi-member ensemble of malaria transmission intensity projections for 2050. The ensemble integrations indicate that climate has the leading impact on malaria changes, but that population growth and urbanisation can offset the effect of climate locally. LUC impacts can also be significant on the local scale but their assessment is highly uncertain and only indicative in this study. It is argued that the study should be repeated with a range of malaria models or VECTRI configurations in order to assess the additional uncertainty due to the malaria model assumptions.

  15. Changing climate, changing frames

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Highlights: ► We show development of flood policy frames in context of climate change attention. ► Rising attention on climate change influences traditional flood policy framing. ► The new framing employs global-scale scientific climate change knowledge. ► With declining attention, framing disregards climate change, using local knowledge. ► We conclude that frames function as sensemaking devices selectively using knowledge. -- Abstract: Water management and particularly flood defence have a long history of collective action in low-lying countries like the Netherlands. The uncertain but potentially severe impacts of the recent climate change issue (e.g. sea level rise, extreme river discharges, salinisation) amplify the wicked and controversial character of flood safety policy issues. Policy proposals in this area generally involve drastic infrastructural works and long-term investments. They face the difficult challenge of framing problems and solutions in a publicly acceptable manner in ever changing circumstances. In this paper, we analyse and compare (1) how three key policy proposals publicly frame the flood safety issue, (2) the knowledge referred to in the framing and (3) how these frames are rhetorically connected or disconnected as statements in a long-term conversation. We find that (1) framings of policy proposals differ in the way they depict the importance of climate change, the relevant timeframe and the appropriate governance mode; (2) knowledge is selectively mobilised to underpin the different frames and (3) the frames about these proposals position themselves against the background of the previous proposals through rhetorical connections and disconnections. Finally, we discuss how this analysis hints at the importance of processes of powering and puzzling that lead to particular framings towards the public at different historical junctures

  16. Philosophy of climate science part II: modelling climate change

    OpenAIRE

    Frigg, Roman; Thompson, Erica; Werndl, Charlotte

    2015-01-01

    This is the second of three parts of an introduction to the philosophy of climate science. In this second part about modelling climate change, the topics of climate modelling, confirmation of climate models, the limits of climate projections, uncertainty and finally model ensembles will be discussed.

  17. Irreducible uncertainty in near-term climate projections

    OpenAIRE

    Hawkins, Ed; Smith, Robin S.; Gregory, Jonathan M.; Stainforth, David A.

    2016-01-01

    Model simulations of the next few decades are widely used in assessments of climate change impacts and as guidance for adaptation. Their non-linear nature reveals a level of irreducible uncertainty which it is important to understand and quantify, especially for projections of near-term regional climate. Here we use large idealised initial condition ensembles of the FAMOUS global climate model with a 1 %/ year compound increase in CO2 levels to quantify the range of fu...

  18. A transient stochastic weather generator incorporating climate model uncertainty

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glenis, Vassilis; Pinamonti, Valentina; Hall, Jim W.; Kilsby, Chris G.

    2015-11-01

    Stochastic weather generators (WGs), which provide long synthetic time series of weather variables such as rainfall and potential evapotranspiration (PET), have found widespread use in water resources modelling. When conditioned upon the changes in climatic statistics (change factors, CFs) predicted by climate models, WGs provide a useful tool for climate impacts assessment and adaption planning. The latest climate modelling exercises have involved large numbers of global and regional climate models integrations, designed to explore the implications of uncertainties in the climate model formulation and parameter settings: so called 'perturbed physics ensembles' (PPEs). In this paper we show how these climate model uncertainties can be propagated through to impact studies by testing multiple vectors of CFs, each vector derived from a different sample from a PPE. We combine this with a new methodology to parameterise the projected time-evolution of CFs. We demonstrate how, when conditioned upon these time-dependent CFs, an existing, well validated and widely used WG can be used to generate non-stationary simulations of future climate that are consistent with probabilistic outputs from the Met Office Hadley Centre's Perturbed Physics Ensemble. The WG enables extensive sampling of natural variability and climate model uncertainty, providing the basis for development of robust water resources management strategies in the context of a non-stationary climate.

  19. Derivation of RCM-driven potential evapotranspiration for hydrological climate change impact analysis in Great Britain: a comparison of methods and associated uncertainty in future projections

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Prudhomme

    2013-01-01

    uncertainty defined by the ensemble of twelve PET equations. The changes show a clear northwest-southeast gradient of PET increase with largest (smallest changes in the northwest in January (July and October respectively. However, the range in magnitude of PET changes due to the choice of PET method shown in this study for Great Britain suggests that PET uncetainty is perhaps one of the greatest challenges facing the assessment of climate change impact on hydrology.

  20. Managing Climate Change Risks

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jones, R. [CSIRO Atmospheric Research, PMB1 Aspendale, Victoria 3195 (Australia)

    2003-07-01

    Issues of uncertainty, scale and delay between action and response mean that 'dangerous' climate change is best managed within a risk assessment framework that evolves as new information is gathered. Risk can be broadly defined as the combination of likelihood and consequence; the latter measured as vulnerability to greenhouse-induced climate change. The most robust way to assess climate change damages in a probabilistic framework is as the likelihood of critical threshold exceedance. Because vulnerability is dominated by local factors, global vulnerability is the aggregation of many local impacts being forced beyond their coping ranges. Several case studies, generic sea level rise and temperature, coral bleaching on the Great Barrier Reef and water supply in an Australian catchment, are used to show how local risk assessments can be assessed then expressed as a function of global warming. Impacts treated thus can be aggregated to assess global risks consistent with Article 2 of the UNFCCC. A 'proof of concept' example is then used to show how the stabilisation of greenhouse gases can constrain the likelihood of exceeding critical thresholds at both the both local and global scale. This analysis suggests that even if the costs of reducing greenhouse gas emissions and the benefits of avoiding climate damages can be estimated, the likelihood of being able to meet a cost-benefit target is limited by both physical and socio-economic uncertainties. In terms of managing climate change risks, adaptation will be most effective at reducing vulnerability likely to occur at low levels of warming. Successive efforts to mitigate greenhouse gases will reduce the likelihood of reaching levels of global warming from the top down, with the highest potential temperatures being avoided first, irrespective of contributing scientific uncertainties. This implies that the first cuts in emissions will always produce the largest economic benefits in terms of avoided

  1. Climate variability and climate change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Changes of variability with climate change are likely to have a substantial impact on vegetation and society, rivaling the importance of changes in the mean values themselves. A variety of paleoclimate and future climate simulations performed with the GISS global climate model is used to assess how the variabilities of temperature and precipitation are altered as climate warms or cools. In general, as climate warms, temperature variability decreases due to reductions in the latitudinal temperature gradient and precipitation variability increases together with the intensity of the hydrologic cycle. If future climate projections are accurate, the reduction in temperature variability will be minimized by the rapid change in mean temperatures, but the hydrologic variability will be amplified by increased evapotranspiration. Greater hydrologic variability would appear to pose a potentially severe problem for the next century. 19 refs.; 3 figs.; 2 tabs

  2. Climate variability and climate change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Changes of variability with climate change are likely to have a substantial impact on vegetation and society, rivaling the importance of changes in the mean values themselves. A variety of paleoclimate and future climate simulations performed with the GISS global climate model is used to assess how the variabilities of temperature and precipitation are altered as climate warms or cools. In general, as climate warms, temperature variability decreases due to reductions in the latitudinal temperature gradient and precipitation variability increases together with the intensity of the hydrologic cycle. If future climate projections are accurate, the reduction in temperature variability will be minimized by the rapid change in mean temperatures, but the hydrologic variability will be amplified by increased evapotranspiration. Greater hydrologic variability would appear to pose a potentially severe problem for the next century

  3. Abrupt change in climate and climate models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. J. Pitman

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available First, we review the evidence that abrupt climate changes have occurred in the past and then demonstrate that climate models have developing capacity to simulate many of these changes. In particular, the processes by which changes in the ocean circulation drive abrupt changes appear to be captured by climate models to a degree that is encouraging. The evidence that past changes in the ocean have driven abrupt change in terrestrial systems is also convincing, but these processes are only just beginning to be included in climate models. Second, we explore the likelihood that climate models can capture those abrupt changes in climate that may occur in the future due to the enhanced greenhouse effect. We note that existing evidence indicates that a major collapse of the thermohaline circulation seems unlikely in the 21st century, although very recent evidence suggests that a weakening may already be underway. We have confidence that current climate models can capture a weakening, but a collapse in the 21st century of the thermohaline circulation is not projected by climate models. Worrying evidence of instability in terrestrial carbon, from observations and modelling studies, is beginning to accumulate. Current climate models used by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change for the 4th Assessment Report do not include these terrestrial carbon processes. We therefore can not make statements with any confidence regarding these changes. At present, the scale of the terrestrial carbon feedback is believed to be small enough that it does not significantly affect projections of warming during the first half of the 21st century. However, the uncertainties in how biological systems will respond to warming are sufficiently large to undermine confidence in this belief and point us to areas requiring significant additional work.

  4. Abrupt change in climate and climate models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. J. Pitman

    2006-07-01

    Full Text Available First, we review the evidence that abrupt climate changes have occurred in the past and then demonstrate that climate models have developing capacity to simulate many of these changes. In particular, the processes by which changes in the ocean circulation drive abrupt changes appear to be captured by climate models to a degree that is encouraging. The evidence that past changes in the ocean have driven abrupt change in terrestrial systems is also convincing, but these processes are only just beginning to be included in climate models. Second, we explore the likelihood that climate models can capture those abrupt changes in climate that may occur in the future due to the enhanced greenhouse effect. We note that existing evidence indicates that a major collapse of the thermohaline circulate seems unlikely in the 21st century, although very recent evidence suggests that a weakening may already be underway. We have confidence that current climate models can capture a weakening, but a collapse of the thermohaline circulation in the 21st century is not projected by climate models. Worrying evidence of instability in terrestrial carbon, from observations and modelling studies, is beginning to accumulate. Current climate models used by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change for the 4th Assessment Report do not include these terrestrial carbon processes. We therefore can not make statements with any confidence regarding these changes. At present, the scale of the terrestrial carbon feedback is believed to be small enough that it does not significantly affect projections of warming during the first half of the 21st century. However, the uncertainties in how biological systems will respond to warming are sufficiently large to undermine confidence in this belief and point us to areas requiring significant additional work.

  5. Adaptive Management of Water Resources in Light of Future Climate Uncertainty

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gerald Sehlke; Mark Colosimo

    2007-11-01

    Water resources managers have always had to make operational decisions in spite of a relatively high degree of uncertainty caused by changing climate, hydrologic, population, land use, socioeconomic, and other conditions. However, based on current climate change predictions and observations of current impacts of climate change or natural variability, the degree of uncertainty appears to be increasing drastically. By better understanding these uncertainties and their policy implications and by managing those uncertainties adaptively, water resources managers and policy makers can reduce the risk of not meeting their management goals and reduce the potential physical, biological and socioeconomic impacts associated with climate change/variation.

  6. Development of an uncertainty technique using Bayesian methods to study the impact of climate change and land use change on solutions obtained by the BMP selection and placement optimization tool

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maringanti, C.; Chaubey, I.

    2009-12-01

    A multi-objective genetic algorithm (NSGA-II) in combination with a watershed model (Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT)) is used in an optimization framework for making the Best Management Practices (BMP) selection and placement decisions to reduce the nonpoint source (NPS) pollutants and the net cost for implementation of BMPs. Shuffled complex evolutionary metropolis uncertainty analysis (SCEM-UA) method will be used to quantify the uncertainty of the BMP selection and placement tool. The sources of input uncertainty for the tool include the uncertainties in the estimation of economic costs for the implementation of BMPs, and input SWAT model predictions at field level. The SWAT model predictions are in turn influenced by the model parameters and the input climate forcing such as precipitation and temperature which in turn are affected due to the changing climate, and the changing land use in the watershed. The optimization tool is also influenced by the operational parameters of the genetic algorithm. The SCEM-UA method will be initiated using a uniform distribution for the range of the model parameters and the input sources of uncertainty to estimate the posterior probability distribution of the model response variables. This methodology will be applied to estimate the uncertainty in the BMP selection and placement in Wildcat Creek Watershed located in northcentral Indiana. Nitrogen, phosphorus, sediment, and pesticide are the various NPS pollutants that will be reduced through implementation of BMPs in the watershed. The uncertainty bounds around the Pareto-optimal fronts after the optimization will provide the watershed management groups a clear insight on how the desired water quality goals could be realistically met for the least amount of money that is available for BMP implementation in the watershed.

  7. Application of stakeholder-based and modelling approaches for supporting robust adaptation decision making under future climatic uncertainty and changing urban-agricultural water demand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhave, Ajay; Dessai, Suraje; Conway, Declan; Stainforth, David

    2016-04-01

    Deep uncertainty in future climate change and socio-economic conditions necessitates the use of assess-risk-of-policy approaches over predict-then-act approaches for adaptation decision making. Robust Decision Making (RDM) approaches embody this principle and help evaluate the ability of adaptation options to satisfy stakeholder preferences under wide-ranging future conditions. This study involves the simultaneous application of two RDM approaches; qualitative and quantitative, in the Cauvery River Basin in Karnataka (population ~23 million), India. The study aims to (a) determine robust water resources adaptation options for the 2030s and 2050s and (b) compare the usefulness of a qualitative stakeholder-driven approach with a quantitative modelling approach. For developing a large set of future scenarios a combination of climate narratives and socio-economic narratives was used. Using structured expert elicitation with a group of climate experts in the Indian Summer Monsoon, climatic narratives were developed. Socio-economic narratives were developed to reflect potential future urban and agricultural water demand. In the qualitative RDM approach, a stakeholder workshop helped elicit key vulnerabilities, water resources adaptation options and performance criteria for evaluating options. During a second workshop, stakeholders discussed and evaluated adaptation options against the performance criteria for a large number of scenarios of climatic and socio-economic change in the basin. In the quantitative RDM approach, a Water Evaluation And Planning (WEAP) model was forced by precipitation and evapotranspiration data, coherent with the climatic narratives, together with water demand data based on socio-economic narratives. We find that compared to business-as-usual conditions options addressing urban water demand satisfy performance criteria across scenarios and provide co-benefits like energy savings and reduction in groundwater depletion, while options reducing

  8. Climate Change Schools Project...

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKinzey, Krista

    2010-01-01

    This article features the award-winning Climate Change Schools Project which aims to: (1) help schools to embed climate change throughout the national curriculum; and (2) showcase schools as "beacons" for climate change teaching, learning, and positive action in their local communities. Operating since 2007, the Climate Change Schools Project…

  9. Scenarios to prioritize observing activities on the North Slope, Alaska in the context of resource development, climate change and socio-economic uncertainties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, O. A.; Eicken, H.; Payne, J. F.; Lassuy, D.

    2014-12-01

    The North Slope of Alaska is experiencing rapid changes in response to interacting climate and socioeconomic drivers. The North Slope Science Initiative (NSSI) is using scenarios as a tool to identify plausible, spatially explicit future states of resource extraction activities on the North Slope and adjacent seas through the year 2040. The objective of the scenarios process is to strategically assess research and monitoring needs on the North Slope. The participatory scenarios process involved stakeholder input (including Federal, State, local, academic, industry and non-profit representatives) to identify key drivers of change related to resource extraction activities on the North Slope. While climate change was identified as a key driver in the biophysical system, economic drivers related to oil and gas development were also important. Expert-reviewed informational materials were developed to help stakeholders obtain baseline knowledge and stimulate discussions about interactions between drivers, knowledge gaps and uncertainties. Map-based scenario products will allow mission-oriented agencies to jointly explore where to prioritize research investments and address risk in a complex, changing environment. Scenarios consider multidecadal timescales. However, tracking of indicator variables derived from scenarios can lead to important insights about the trajectory of the North Slope social-environmental system and inform management decisions to reduce risk on much shorter timescales. The inclusion of stakeholders helps provide a broad spectrum of expert viewpoints necessary for considering the range of plausible scenarios. A well-defined focal question, transparency in the participation process and continued outreach about the utility and limitations of scenarios are also important components of the scenarios process.

  10. CLIMATE CHANGE, Change International Negociations?

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Gao Xiaosheng

    2009-01-01

    @@ Climate change is one of key threats to human beings who have to deal with.According to Bali Action Plan released after the 2007 Bali Climate Talk held in Indonesia,the United Nations Framework on Climate Change(UNFCCC) has launched a two-year process to negotiate a post-2012 climate arrangement after the Kyoto Protocol expires in 2012 and the Copenhagen Climate Change Conference will seal a final deal on post-2012 climate regime in December,2009.For this,the United Nation Chief Ban Ki Moon called 2009"the year ofclimate change".

  11. Climate change and climate policy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The climate issue is a great political and scientific challenge for several reasons: (1) There are many uncertain aspects of the climate problem, such as future emission of climate gases, the response of the climate system upon these gases, and the effects of climate changes. (2) It is probable, however, that anthropogenic emission of climate gases, deforestation etc. will cause noticeable climate changes in the future. This might be observed as increased frequency of extreme weather situations. This appears to be a greater threat than a gradual increase of temperature and precipitation. (3) Since the climate system is large and react only relatively slowly on changes in for instance the emission of climate gases, the climate problem can only be solved by means of long-term measures. (4) The climate changes may be irreversible. A rational short-term strategy is to ensure maximum flexibility, which can be done by ''slowing down'' (curtailing emissions) and by avoiding irreversible actions as much as possible. The long-term challenge is to develop an economically responsible alternative to the present fossil-based energy system that permits carbon-efficient technologies to compete on price with coal and unconventional oil and gas. Norway is in a special position by being a large exporter of fossil fuel and at the same time wanting to appear responsible in environmental matters. This combination may incur considerable expenses upon Norway and it is therefore important that environmental commitments like the Kyoto agreement can be honoured to the lowest possible cost. The costs can be minimized by: (1) minimizing the measure costs in Norway, (2) working to make the international quota price as low as possible, and (3) reducing the loss of petroleum income as much as possible. This report describes the earth's climate history, the forces behind climatic changes and what the prospects for the future look like. It also reviews what is being done to curtail the emission of

  12. The impact of climate change, human interference, scale and modeling uncertainties on the estimation of aquifer properties and river flow components

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santos, R. M. B.; Sanches Fernandes, L. F.; Moura, J. P.; Pereira, M. G.; Pacheco, F. A. L.

    2014-11-01

    Within the period 1978-2006, climate change and human interferences produced noticeable impacts on the hydrology of a small watershed, known as the Beça River basin. Climate change was characterized by a persistent raise in temperature (+0.78 °C decade-1) and a drop in the annual rainfall (-300 mm decade-1). Human interferences included the construction of a dam for electric power generation, in 1998, and since then the transference of Beça River flows from the dam lake to the adjacent Tâmega River. The impacts on catchment hydrology comprised a decline of aquifer hydraulic conductivity and effective porosity, by approximately one order of magnitude, related to a water table lowering of about 17 m within the bedrock aquifer composed of weathered and fractured Hercynian granites and Paleozoic metassediments and of saprolite layers derived therefrom. Aquifer property estimates were compared across spatial scales, namely the Beça River and the nested sub-basins scale. Sub-basin aquifers are more porous and permeable than the basin aquifer because corresponding hydraulic circuits are shallower. Comparisons were also made between aquifer properties derived from measured and simulated stream flows, which revealed effects of modeling uncertainties on the results. River flows also suffered a substantial decrease in the course of climate change and human interference, especially the overland flows (4/5 decrease) and the base flows (2/3 decrease). The inter flows were less affected (1/3 decrease) because they were partly fed with water from the aquifer storage, which in turn underwent depletion. The hydrologic changes in the Beça River basin anticipate important impacts on the local use of natural water. In this context, the aforementioned water table lowering may have caused limited access to shallow groundwater for activities such as crop irrigation from dug wells, whereas the severe decline in overland flows and base flows had certainly reduced the availability of

  13. Climate dynamics and fluid mechanics: Natural variability and related uncertainties

    CERN Document Server

    Ghil, Michael; Simonnet, Eric; 10.1016/j.physd.2008.03.036

    2010-01-01

    The purpose of this review-and-research paper is twofold: (i) to review the role played in climate dynamics by fluid-dynamical models; and (ii) to contribute to the understanding and reduction of the uncertainties in future climate-change projections. To illustrate the first point, we focus on the large-scale, wind-driven flow of the mid-latitude oceans which contribute in a crucial way to Earth's climate, and to changes therein. We study the low-frequency variability (LFV) of the wind-driven, double-gyre circulation in mid-latitude ocean basins, via the bifurcation sequence that leads from steady states through periodic solutions and on to the chaotic, irregular flows documented in the observations. This sequence involves local, pitchfork and Hopf bifurcations, as well as global, homoclinic ones. The natural climate variability induced by the LFV of the ocean circulation is but one of the causes of uncertainties in climate projections. Another major cause of such uncertainties could reside in the structural ...

  14. Symposium on Global Climate Change

    OpenAIRE

    Richard Schmalensee

    1993-01-01

    Global climate change, and policies to slow it or adapt to it, may be among the primary forces shaping the world's economy throughout the next century and beyond. Nonetheless, popular treatments of this issue commonly ignore economics. This introductory essay sketches some of the uncertainties and research questions.

  15. Climate wavelet spectrum estimation under chronology uncertainties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lenoir, G.; Crucifix, M.

    2012-04-01

    Several approaches to estimate the chronology of palaeoclimate records exist in the literature: simple interpolation between the tie points, orbital tuning, alignment on other data... These techniques generate a single estimate of the chronology. More recently, statistical generators of chronologies have appeared (e.g. OXCAL, BCHRON) allowing the construction of thousands of chronologies given the tie points and their uncertainties. These techniques are based on advanced statistical methods. They allow one to take into account the uncertainty of the timing of each climatic event recorded into the core. On the other hand, when interpreting the data, scientists often rely on time series analysis, and especially on spectral analysis. Given that paleo-data are composed of a large spectrum of frequencies, are non-stationary and are highly noisy, the continuous wavelet transform turns out to be a suitable tool to analyse them. The wavelet periodogram, in particular, is helpful to interpret visually the time-frequency behaviour of the data. Here, we combine statistical methods to generate chronologies with the power of continuous wavelet transform. Some interesting applications then come up: comparison of time-frequency patterns between two proxies (extracted from different cores), between a proxy and a statistical dynamical model, and statistical estimation of phase-lag between two filtered signals. All these applications consider explicitly the uncertainty in the chronology. The poster presents mathematical developments on the wavelet spectrum estimation under chronology uncertainties as well as some applications to Quaternary data based on marine and ice cores.

  16. Accounting for Climate Change: Introduction

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The assessment of greenhouse gases (GHGs) emitted to and removed from the atmosphere is high on both political and scientific agendas internationally. As increasing international concern and cooperation aim at policy-oriented solutions to the climate change problem, several issues have begun to arise regarding verification and compliance under both proposed and legislated schemes meant to reduce the human-induced global climate impact. The approaches to addressing uncertainty introduced in this article attempt to improve national inventories or to provide a basis for the standardization of inventory estimates to enable comparison of emissions and emission changes across countries. Authors of the accompanying articles use detailed uncertainty analyses to enforce the current structure of the emission trading system and attempt to internalize high levels of uncertainty by tailoring the emissions trading market rules. Assessment of uncertainty can help improve inventories and manage risk. Through recognizing the importance of, identifying and quantifying uncertainties, great strides can be made in the process of Accounting for Climate Change

  17. Climate Change and Health

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... 2014 Fact sheets Features Commentaries 2014 Multimedia Contacts Climate change and health Fact sheet Reviewed June 2016 ... in improved health, particularly through reduced air pollution. Climate change Over the last 50 years, human activities – ...

  18. Climate change and water resources

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Younos, Tamim [The Cabell Brand Center for Global Poverty and Resource Sustainability Studies, Salem, VA (United States); Grady, Caitlin A. (ed.) [Purdue Univ., West Lafayette, IN (United States). Ecological Sciences and Engineering Program

    2013-07-01

    This volume presents nine chapters prepared by international authors and highlighting various aspects of climate change and water resources. Climate change models and scenarios, particularly those related to precipitation projection, are discussed and uncertainties and data deficiencies that affect the reliability of predictions are identified. The potential impacts of climate change on water resources (including quality) and on crop production are analyzed and adaptation strategies for crop production are offered. Furthermore, case studies of climate change mitigation strategies, such as the reduction of water use and conservation measures in urban environments, are included. This book will serve as a valuable reference work for researchers and students in water and environmental sciences, as well as for governmental agencies and policy makers.

  19. Climate change and water resources

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This volume presents nine chapters prepared by international authors and highlighting various aspects of climate change and water resources. Climate change models and scenarios, particularly those related to precipitation projection, are discussed and uncertainties and data deficiencies that affect the reliability of predictions are identified. The potential impacts of climate change on water resources (including quality) and on crop production are analyzed and adaptation strategies for crop production are offered. Furthermore, case studies of climate change mitigation strategies, such as the reduction of water use and conservation measures in urban environments, are included. This book will serve as a valuable reference work for researchers and students in water and environmental sciences, as well as for governmental agencies and policy makers.

  20. Irreducible uncertainty in near-term climate projections

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hawkins, Ed; Smith, Robin S.; Gregory, Jonathan M.; Stainforth, David A.

    2016-06-01

    Model simulations of the next few decades are widely used in assessments of climate change impacts and as guidance for adaptation. Their non-linear nature reveals a level of irreducible uncertainty which it is important to understand and quantify, especially for projections of near-term regional climate. Here we use large idealised initial condition ensembles of the FAMOUS global climate model with a 1 %/year compound increase in hbox {CO}_2 levels to quantify the range of future temperatures in model-based projections. These simulations explore the role of both atmospheric and oceanic initial conditions and are the largest such ensembles to date. Short-term simulated trends in global temperature are diverse, and cooling periods are more likely to be followed by larger warming rates. The spatial pattern of near-term temperature change varies considerably, but the proportion of the surface showing a warming is more consistent. In addition, ensemble spread in inter-annual temperature declines as the climate warms, especially in the North Atlantic. Over Europe, atmospheric initial condition uncertainty can, for certain ocean initial conditions, lead to 20 year trends in winter and summer in which every location can exhibit either strong cooling or rapid warming. However, the details of the distribution are highly sensitive to the ocean initial condition chosen and particularly the state of the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation. On longer timescales, the warming signal becomes more clear and consistent amongst different initial condition ensembles. An ensemble using a range of different oceanic initial conditions produces a larger spread in temperature trends than ensembles using a single ocean initial condition for all lead times. This highlights the potential benefits from initialising climate predictions from ocean states informed by observations. These results suggest that climate projections need to be performed with many more ensemble members than at

  1. Systemic change increases model projection uncertainty

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verstegen, Judith; Karssenberg, Derek; van der Hilst, Floor; Faaij, André

    2014-05-01

    Most spatio-temporal models are based on the assumption that the relationship between system state change and its explanatory processes is stationary. This means that model structure and parameterization are usually kept constant over time, ignoring potential systemic changes in this relationship resulting from e.g., climatic or societal changes, thereby overlooking a source of uncertainty. We define systemic change as a change in the system indicated by a system state change that cannot be simulated using a constant model structure. We have developed a method to detect systemic change, using a Bayesian data assimilation technique, the particle filter. The particle filter was used to update the prior knowledge about the model structure. In contrast to the traditional particle filter approach (e.g., Verstegen et al., 2014), we apply the filter separately for each point in time for which observations are available, obtaining the optimal model structure for each of the time periods in between. This allows us to create a time series of the evolution of the model structure. The Runs test (Wald and Wolfowitz, 1940), a stationarity test, is used to check whether variation in this time series can be attributed to randomness or not. If not, this indicates systemic change. The uncertainty that the systemic change adds to the existing model projection uncertainty can be determined by comparing model outcomes of a model with a stationary model structure and a model with a model structure changing according to the variation found in the time series. To test the systemic change detection methodology, we apply it to a land use change cellular automaton (CA) (Verstegen et al., 2012) and use observations of real land use from all years from 2004 to 2012 and associated uncertainty as observational data in the particle filter. A systemic change was detected for the period 2006 to 2008. In this period the influence on the location of sugar cane expansion of the driver sugar cane in

  2. Investments in energy technological change under uncertainty

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shittu, Ekundayo

    2009-12-01

    This dissertation addresses the crucial problem of how environmental policy uncertainty influences investments in energy technological change. The rising level of carbon emissions due to increasing global energy consumption calls for policy shift. In order to stem the negative consequences on the climate, policymakers are concerned with carving an optimal regulation that will encourage technology investments. However, decision makers are facing uncertainties surrounding future environmental policy. The first part considers the treatment of technological change in theoretical models. This part has two purposes: (1) to show--through illustrative examples--that technological change can lead to quite different, and surprising, impacts on the marginal costs of pollution abatement. We demonstrate an intriguing and uncommon result that technological change can increase the marginal costs of pollution abatement over some range of abatement; (2) to show the impact, on policy, of this uncommon observation. We find that under the assumption of technical change that can increase the marginal cost of pollution abatement over some range, the ranking of policy instruments is affected. The second part builds on the first by considering the impact of uncertainty in the carbon tax on investments in a portfolio of technologies. We determine the response of energy R&D investments as the carbon tax increases both in terms of overall and technology-specific investments. We determine the impact of risk in the carbon tax on the portfolio. We find that the response of the optimal investment in a portfolio of technologies to an increasing carbon tax depends on the relative costs of the programs and the elasticity of substitution between fossil and non-fossil energy inputs. In the third part, we zoom-in on the portfolio model above to consider how uncertainty in the magnitude and timing of a carbon tax influences investments. Under a two-stage continuous-time optimal control model, we

  3. Projection of future climate changes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Climate models provide the opportunity to anticipate how the climate system may change due to anthropogenic activities during the 21. century. Studies are based on numerical simulations that explore the evolution of the mean climate and its variability according to different socio-economic scenarios. We present a selection of results from phase 5 of the Climate model intercomparison project (CMIP5) with an illustrative focus on the two French models that participated to this exercise. We describe the effects of human perturbations upon surface temperature, precipitation, the cryo-sphere, but also extreme weather events and the carbon cycle. Results show a number of robust features, on the amplitude and geographical patterns of the expected changes and on the processes at play in these changes. They also show the limitations of such a prospective exercise and persistent uncertainties on some key aspects. (authors)

  4. Our changing climate

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The author presents an overview of the changing climate. Attention is focused on the following: meteorology; weather; climate anomalies; changes in atmospheric composition and global warming; ozone; mathematical models; and climate and politics. In its conclusion, it asks researchers to stay out of a game in which, ultimately, neither science nor politics stands to gain anything

  5. Mathematics of Climate Change

    OpenAIRE

    Halstadtrø, Ida

    2013-01-01

    Mathematics in climate research is rarely mentioned in the everyday conversations or in the media when talking about climate changes. This thesis therefore focus on the central role mathematics plays in climate research, through describing the different models used in predicting future weather and climate. In Chapter 1, a general introduction to climate, its components and feedbacks, and today's status is given. Chapter 2 concentrates on the dynamical models represented by ordinary differenti...

  6. Climate change impacts and adaptations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Arndt, Channing; Tarp, Finn

    2015-01-01

    , the inseparability of the development and climate agendas, and the rate of assimilation of climate and development information in key institutions. They are drawn from the Development Under Climate Change (DUCC) project carried out by UNU-WIDER of which the countries of the Greater Zambeze Valley formed a part......In this article, we assert that developing countries are much better prepared to undertake negotiations at the Conference of the Parties in Paris (CoP21) as compared to CoP15 in Copenhagen. An important element of this is the accumulation of knowledge with respect to the implications of climate...... change and the ongoing internalization thereof by key institutions in developing countries. The articles in this special issue set forth a set of technical contributions to this improved understanding. We also summarize five major lessons related to uncertainty, extreme events, timing of impacts...

  7. Asking about climate change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Jonas Østergaard; D'haen, Sarah Ann Lise

    2014-01-01

    There is increasing evidence that climate change will strongly affect people across the globe. Likely impacts of and adaptations to climate change are drawing the attention of researchers from many disciplines. In adaptation research focus is often on perceptions of climate change...... and on vulnerability and adaptation strategies in a particular region or community. But how do we research the ways in which people experience changing climatic conditions, the processes of decision-making, the actual adaptation strategies carried out and the consequences of these for actors living and dealing...... with climate change? On the basis of a literature review of all articles published in Global Environmental Change between 2000 and 2012 that deal with human dimensions of climate change using qualitative methods this paper provides some answers but also raises some concerns. The period and length of fieldwork...

  8. Our Changing Climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newhouse, Kay Berglund

    2007-01-01

    In this article, the author discusses how global warming makes the leap from the headlines to the classroom with thought-provoking science experiments. To teach her fifth-grade students about climate change, the author starts with a discussion of the United States' local climate. They extend this idea to contrast the local climate with others,…

  9. Quantifying uncertainty in documentary-data based climate reconstructions?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moberg, A.; Dobrovolny, P.; Wilson, R.; Brazdil, R.; Pfister, C.; Glaser, R.; Leijonhufvud, L.; Zorita, E.

    2009-04-01

    Past climate variations in the pre-instrumental period can be estimated from different kinds of proxy data. Apart from natural proxy archives, important information can be found in documentary non-instrumental man-made sources, primarily for Europe and a few other regions with a long tradition of keeping documentary records related to weather and climate. Unlike other proxy data types, documentary data can provide climate information for all seasons, with an accuracy down to monthly or even daily resolution. They are, however, rarely found as continuous complete time series for a particular location, and are mostly collected and compiled on a regional or national level. To develop a temperature or precipitation reconstruction, the raw descriptive information is generally first transcribed onto an ordinal seven-degree index scale, typically ranging from -3 (extremely cold or dry) to +3 (extremely warm or wet) for each individual month, where 0 indicates 'normal'. Seasonal and annual indices are calculated as the sum of the monthly values. Traditionally, documentary evidence was seldom collected to allow a period of overlap with instrumental data to facilitate statistical calibration and verification. Consequently, there are few statistically derived estimates of uncertainty in documentary based climate reconstructions. Moreover, as the raw information is often given with reference to the contemporary authors' perception of what 'normal' conditions were, there is a risk of losing low-frequency variability in the resulting climate reconstructions. In some cases, however, documentary climate data exist as more or less direct physical or biological quantitative time series that reflect climate changes, and which better preserve low-frequency variability. These series do not require any transcribing onto an index scale and may overlap with the instrumental records. This study describes some recent investigations which have extended index-type data well into the

  10. Reservoir Systems in Changing Climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lien, W.; Tung, C.; Tai, C.

    2007-12-01

    Climate change may cause more climate variability and further results in more frequent extreme hydrological events which may greatly influence reservoir¡¦s abilities to provide service, such as water supply and flood mitigation, and even danger reservoir¡¦s safety. Some local studies have identified that climate change may cause more flood in wet period and less flow in dry period in Taiwan. To mitigate climate change impacts, more reservoir space, i.e. less storage, may be required to store higher flood in wet periods, while more reservoir storage may be required to supply water for dry periods. The goals to strengthen adaptive capacity of water supply and flood mitigation are conflict under climate change. This study will focus on evaluating the impacts of climate change on reservoir systems. The evaluation procedure includes hydrological models, a reservoir water balance model, and a water supply system dynamics model. The hydrological models are used to simulate reservoir inflows under different climate conditions. Future climate scenarios are derived from several GCMs. Then, the reservoir water balance model is developed to calculate reservoir¡¦s storage and outflows according to the simulated inflows and operational rules. The ability of flood mitigation is also evaluated. At last, those outflows are further input to the system dynamics model to assess whether the goal of water supply can still be met. To mitigate climate change impacts, the implementing adaptation strategies will be suggested with the principles of risk management. Besides, uncertainties of this study will also be analyzed. The Feitsui reservoir system in northern Taiwan is chosen as a case study.

  11. Climate Change in Prehistory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burroughs, William James

    2005-06-01

    How did humankind deal with the extreme challenges of the last Ice Age? How have the relatively benign post-Ice Age conditions affected the evolution and spread of humanity across the globe? By setting our genetic history in the context of climate change during prehistory, the origin of many features of our modern world are identified and presented in this illuminating book. It reviews the aspects of our physiology and intellectual development that have been influenced by climatic factors, and how features of our lives - diet, language and the domestication of animals - are also the product of the climate in which we evolved. In short: climate change in prehistory has in many ways made us what we are today. Climate Change in Prehistory weaves together studies of the climate with anthropological, archaeological and historical studies, and will fascinate all those interested in the effects of climate on human development and history.

  12. A hybrid approach to incorporating climate change and variability into climate scenario for impact assessments

    OpenAIRE

    Gebretsadik, Yohannes; Strzepek, Kenneth; Schlosser, C. Adam

    2014-01-01

    Traditional 'delta-change' approach of scenario generation for climate change impact assessment to water resources strongly depends on the selected base-case observed historical climate conditions that the climate shocks are to be super-imposed. This method disregards the combined effect of climate change and the inherent hydro-climatological variability in the system. Here we demonstrated a hybrid uncertainty approach in which uncertainties in historical climate variability are combined with...

  13. Towards adaptive spatial planning for climate change: Balancing between robustness and flexibility

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Buuren, A. van; Driessen, P.P.J.; Rijswick, H.F.M.W. van; Rietveld, P.; Salet, W.; Spit, T.J.M.; Teisman, G.

    2013-01-01

    Adaptation to climate change necessitates serious adjustments to the spatial organization of our environment. However, the uncertainties, the controversial character of the climate debate, the variety of climate change consequences and the inherently complex character of climate change puts specific

  14. Towards adaptive spatial planning for climate change: balancing between robustness and flexibility

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    A. van Buuren; P.P.J. Driessen; M. van Rijswick; P. Rietveld; W. Salet; T. Spit; G. Teisman

    2013-01-01

    Adaptation to climate change necessitates serious adjustments to the spatial organization of our environment. However, the uncertainties, the controversial character of the climate debate, the variety of climate change consequences and the inherently complex character of climate change puts specific

  15. Climate Change and Roads

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Chinowsky, P.; Arndt, Channing

    2012-01-01

    Decision-makers who are responsible for determining when and where infrastructure should be developed and/or enhanced are facing a new challenge with the emerging topic of climate change. The paper introduces a stressor–response methodology where engineering-based models are used as a basis...... four climate projection scenarios, the paper details how climate change response decisions may cost the Mozambican government in terms of maintenance costs and long-term roadstock inventory reduction. Through this approach the paper details how a 14% reduction in inventory loss can be achieved through...... the adoption of a proactive, design standard evolution approach to climate change....

  16. Climate and Global Change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The present volume contains the lessons delivered at the course held in Arles, France, on the subject Climate and Global Change: natural variability of the geosphere and biosphere systems, biogeochemical cycles and their perturbation by human activities, monitoring and forecasting global changes (satellite observations, modelling,...). Short presentations of students' own research activities are also proposed (climatic fluctuation in the Mediterranean area, climate/vegetation relations, etc.)

  17. The changing climate

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A historical outline of climate changes is followed by a discussion of the problem of predictability. The main section goes into anthropogenic changes of the local (urban) and global climate, with particular regard to the greenhouse effect and its consequences in terms of human action. The author points out that today's climate problems should be discussed in a subject-centered and objective manner. (KW)

  18. Communicating uncertainty in seasonal and interannual climate forecasts in Europe.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, Andrea L; Dessai, Suraje; de Bruin, Wändi Bruine

    2015-11-28

    Across Europe, organizations in different sectors are sensitive to climate variability and change, at a range of temporal scales from the seasonal to the interannual to the multi-decadal. Climate forecast providers face the challenge of communicating the uncertainty inherent in these forecasts to these decision-makers in a way that is transparent, understandable and does not lead to a false sense of certainty. This article reports the findings of a user-needs survey, conducted with 50 representatives of organizations in Europe from a variety of sectors (e.g. water management, forestry, energy, tourism, health) interested in seasonal and interannual climate forecasts. We find that while many participating organizations perform their own 'in house' risk analysis most require some form of processing and interpretation by forecast providers. However, we also find that while users tend to perceive seasonal and interannual forecasts to be useful, they often find them difficult to understand, highlighting the need for communication formats suitable for both expert and non-expert users. In addition, our results show that people tend to prefer familiar formats for receiving information about uncertainty. The implications of these findings for both the providers and users of climate information are discussed. PMID:26460115

  19. Climate Change Crunch Time

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Xie Zhenhua

    2011-01-01

    CLIMATE change is a severe challenge facing humanity in the 21st century and thus the Chinese Government always attaches great importance to the problem.Actively dealing with climate change is China's important strategic policy in its social and economic development.China will make a positive contribution to the world in this regard.

  20. Climate for change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Climate for Change: Non-State Actors and the Global Politics of the Greenhouse provides a challenging explanation of the forces that have shaped the international global warming debate. Unlike existing books on the politics of climate change, this book concentrates on how non-stage actors, such as scientific, environmental and industry groups, as opposed to governmental organisations, affect political outcomes in global fora on climate change. It also provides insights in to the role of the media in influencing the agenda. The book draws on a range of analytical approaches to assess and explain the influence of these non-governmental organisations in the course of global climate change politics. The book will be of interest to all researchers and policy-makers associated with climate change, and will be used on university courses in international relations, politics and environmental studies. (Author)

  1. Struggle against climate change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This document first proposes a presentation of the cross-cutting policy defined for the struggle against climate change. It notably presents its various programs. It describes the implemented strategy which aims at reducing on a short term greenhouse gas emissions with the available technologies, at making the climate challenge a driver for economic competitiveness, at developing the knowledge on climatic change and at preparing the necessary adaptation measures, and at stating on the international scene the French commitment and its dynamic role in front of the climate challenge

  2. Communities under climate change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nogues, David Bravo; Rahbek, Carsten

    2011-01-01

    The distribution of species on Earth and the interactions among them are tightly linked to historical and contemporary climate, so that global climate change will transform the world in which we live. Biological models can now credibly link recent decadal trends in field data to climate change......, but predicting future impacts on biological communities is a major challenge. Attempts to move beyond general macroecological predictions of climate change impact on one hand, and observations from specific, local-scale cases, small-scale experiments, or studies of a few species on the other, raise a plethora...... of unanswered questions. On page 1124 of this issue, Harley (1) reports results that cast new light on how biodiversity, across different trophic levels, responds to climate change....

  3. Climate Change and Mitigation

    OpenAIRE

    Nibleus, Kerstin; Lundin, Rickard

    2010-01-01

    Planet Earth has experienced repeated changes of its climate throughout time. Periods warmer than today as well as much colder, during glacial episodes, have alternated. In our time, rapid population growth with increased demand for natural resources and energy, has made society increasingly vulnerable to environmental changes, both natural and those caused by man; human activity is clearly affecting the radiation balance of the Earth. In the session “Climate Change and Mitigation” the speake...

  4. Cuba confronts climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alonso, Gisela; Clark, Ismael

    2015-04-01

    Among environmental problems, climate change presents the greatest challenges to developing countries, especially island nations. Changes in climate and the resulting effects on human health call for examination of the interactions between environmental and social factors. Important in Cuba's case are soil conditions, food availability, disease burden, ecological changes, extreme weather events, water quality and rising sea levels, all in conjunction with a range of social, cultural, economic and demographic conditions.

  5. CIRCLE 2 policy brief: Communicate uncertainties- design climate adaptation measures to be flexible and robust

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pelt, van S.C.; Avelar, D.; Swart, R.J.

    2010-01-01

    This policy brief is directed towards funders and managers of climate change impacts and adaptation research programmes as well as policy makers in this area. It notes various challenges in addressing uncertainties in climate change research and policy and provides suggestions on how to address them

  6. Biodiversity and Climate Change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Biological diversity or biodiversity is crucial for ecological stability including regulation of climate change, recreational and medicinal use; and scientific advancement. Kenya like other developing countries, especially, those in Sub-Saharan Africa, will continue to depend greatly on her biodiversity for present and future development. This important resource must, therefore be conserved. This chapter presents an overview of Kenya's biodiversity; its importance and initiatives being undertaken for its conservation; and in detail, explores issues of climate change and biodiversity, concentrating on impacts of climate change

  7. Witnesses of climate change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    After having evoked the process of climate change, the effect of greenhouse gas emissions, the evolution of average temperatures in France since 1900, and indicated the various interactions and impacts of climate change regarding air quality, water resources, food supply, degradation and loss of biodiversity, deforestation, desertification, this publication, while quoting various testimonies (from a mountain refuge guardian, a wine maker, a guide in La Reunion, an IFREMER bio-statistician engineer, and a representative of health professionals), describes the various noticed impacts of climate change on the environment in mountain chains, on agriculture, on sea level rise, on overseas biodiversity, and on health

  8. Adapting to climate change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Arndt, Channing; Strzepek, Kenneth; Tarp, Finn;

    2011-01-01

    Mozambique, like many African countries, is already highly susceptible to climate variability and extreme weather events. Climate change threatens to heighten this vulnerability. In order to evaluate potential impacts and adaptation options for Mozambique, we develop an integrated modeling...... framework that translates atmospheric changes from general circulation model projections into biophysical outcomes via detailed hydrologic, crop, hydropower and infrastructure models. These sector models simulate a historical baseline and four extreme climate change scenarios. Sector results are then passed...... down to a dynamic computable general equilibrium model, which is used to estimate economy-wide impacts on national welfare, as well as the total cost of damages caused by climate change. Potential damages without changes in policy are significant; our discounted estimates range from US2.3 to US2.3toUS7...

  9. Climate change governance

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Knieling, Joerg [HafenCity Univ. Hamburg (Germany). Urban Planning and Regional Development; Leal Filho, Walter (eds.) [HAW Hamburg (Germany). Research and Transfer Centre Applications of Life Science

    2013-07-01

    Climate change is a cause for concern both globally and locally. In order for it to be tackled holistically, its governance is an important topic needing scientific and practical consideration. Climate change governance is an emerging area, and one which is closely related to state and public administrative systems and the behaviour of private actors, including the business sector, as well as the civil society and non-governmental organisations. Questions of climate change governance deal both with mitigation and adaptation whilst at the same time trying to devise effective ways of managing the consequences of these measures across the different sectors. Many books have been produced on general matters related to climate change, such as climate modelling, temperature variations, sea level rise, but, to date, very few publications have addressed the political, economic and social elements of climate change and their links with governance. This book will address this gap. Furthermore, a particular feature of this book is that it not only presents different perspectives on climate change governance, but it also introduces theoretical approaches and brings these together with practical examples which show how main principles may be implemented in practice.

  10. Olivine and climate change

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schuiling, R.D.

    2012-01-01

    The greenhouse effect, thanks mainly to the water vapor in our atmosphere, has created a livable climate on Earth. Climate change, however, may potentially have dire consequences. It is generally assumed that the rise in CO2 levels in the atmosphere is the main culprit, although several other greenh

  11. Les scénarios globaux de changement climatique et leurs incertitudesGlobal scenarios of climate change and associated uncertainties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Le Treut, Hervé

    2003-06-01

    The changes in the atmospheric chemical composition since the beginning of the industrial era have no equivalent throughout the Quaternary. All model simulations indicate that, without a significant decrease of the greenhouse gases emissions, climate is bound to change importantly during the years and decades to come. The precise forecast of these changes is made difficult both by the characteristics of natural systems which are not entirely predictable - as well as by our present and future socio-economic choices. To cite this article: H. Le Treut, C. R. Geoscience 335 (2003).

  12. Criminality and climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, Rob

    2016-08-01

    The impacts of climate change imply a reconceptualization of environment-related criminality. Criminology can offer insight into the definitions and dynamics of this behaviour, and outline potential areas of redress.

  13. Climate Change Adaptation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hudecz, Adriána

    -operation and research into the common problems of the Northern Periphery. This report is an output of the ROADEX “Implementing Accessibility” project (2009-2012). It gives a summary of the results of research into adaptation measures to combat climate change effects on low volume roads in the Northern Periphery....... The research was carried out between January 2000 and March 2012. One of the biggest challenges that mankind has to face is the prospect of climate change resulting from emissions of greenhouse gases. These gases trap energy in the atmosphere and cause global surface temperatures to rise. This warming in turn...... causes changes in other climatic variables such as rainfall, humidity and wind speed that impact on the functioning of infrastructure such road networks. This paper discusses the climate changes predicted by the world’s meteorological organisations and considers how these may impact on the public...

  14. Climate for Change?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wejs, Anja

    Cities rather than national governments take the lead in acting on climate change. Several cities have voluntarily created climate change plans to prevent and prepare for the effects of climate change. In the literature climate change has been examined as a multilevel governance area taking place...... and to investigate the institutional dynamics new institutional theory is used with an emphasis on examining institutional mechanisms in relation to building legitimacy for action. The concept of mechanisms can help explain how and why constraints on action occur, and the concept of legitimacy is useful to clarify...... entrepreneurs create windows for action through the establishment of local networks. The thesis contributes knowledge on the constraints of the internal integration process in city governments. It provides explanations of why these constraints occur, and how officials seek to overcome them. The thesis provides...

  15. Climate change and compensation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Karsten Klint; Flanagan, Tine Bech

    2013-01-01

    This paper presents a case for compensation of actual harm from climate change in the poorest countries. First, it is shown that climate change threatens to reverse the fight to eradicate poverty. Secondly, it is shown how the problems raised in the literature for compensation to some extent...... are based on misconceptions and do not apply to compensation of present actual harm. Finally, two arguments are presented to the effect that, in so far as developed countries accept a major commitment to mitigate climate change, they should also accept a commitment to address or compensate actual harm from...... climate change. The first argument appeals to the principle that if it is an injustice to cause risk of incurring harm in the future, then it is also an injustice to cause a similar harm now. The second argument appeals to the principle that if there is moral reason to reduce the risk of specific harms...

  16. Uncertainty and Climate Change and its effect on Generalization and Prediction abilities by creating Diverse Classifiers and Feature Section Methods using Information Fusion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Y. P. Kosta

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available The model forecast suggests a deterministic approach. Forecasting was traditionally done by a singlemodel - deterministic prediction, recent years has witnessed drastic changes. Today, with InformationFusion (Ensemble technique it is possible to improve the generalization ability of classifiers with highlevels of reliability. Through Information Fusion it is easily possible to combine diverse & independentoutcomes for decision-making. This approach adopts the idea of combining the results of multiplemethods (two-way interactions between them using appropriate model on the testset. Althoughuncertainties are often very significant, for the purpose of single prediction, especially at the initialstage, one dose not consider uncertainties in the model, the initial conditions, or the very nature of theclimate (environment or atmosphere itself using single model. If we make small changes in the initialparameter setting, it will result in change in predictive accuracy of the model. Similarly, uncertainty inmodel physics can result in large forecast differences and errors. So, instead of running one prediction,run a collection/package/bundle (ensemble of predictions, each one kick starting from a different initialstate or with different conditions and sequentially executing the next. The variations resulting due toexecution of different prediction package/model could be then used (independently combining oraggregating to estimate the uncertainty of the prediction, giving us better accuracy and reliability. Inthis paper the authors propose to use Information fusion technique that will provide insight of probablekey parameters that is necessary to purposefully evaluate the successes of new generation of productsand services, improving forecasting. Ensembles can be creatively applied to provide insight against thenew generation products yielding higher probabilities of success. Ensemble will yield critical features ofthe products and also provide insight to

  17. Western water and climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dettinger, Michael; Udall, Bradley; Georgakakos, Aris

    2015-12-01

    The western United States is a region long defined by water challenges. Climate change adds to those historical challenges, but does not, for the most part, introduce entirely new challenges; rather climate change is likely to stress water supplies and resources already in many cases stretched to, or beyond, natural limits. Projections are for continued and, likely, increased warming trends across the region, with a near certainty of continuing changes in seasonality of snowmelt and streamflows, and a strong potential for attendant increases in evaporative demands. Projections of future precipitation are less conclusive, although likely the northern-most West will see precipitation increases while the southernmost West sees declines. However, most of the region lies in a broad area where some climate models project precipitation increases while others project declines, so that only increases in precipitation uncertainties can be projected with any confidence. Changes in annual and seasonal hydrographs are likely to challenge water managers, users, and attempts to protect or restore environmental flows, even where annual volumes change little. Other impacts from climate change (e.g., floods and water-quality changes) are poorly understood and will likely be location dependent. In this context, four iconic river basins offer glimpses into specific challenges that climate change may bring to the West. The Colorado River is a system in which overuse and growing demands are projected to be even more challenging than climate-change-induced flow reductions. The Rio Grande offers the best example of how climate-change-induced flow declines might sink a major system into permanent drought. The Klamath is currently projected to face the more benign precipitation future, but fisheries and irrigation management may face dire straits due to warming air temperatures, rising irrigation demands, and warming waters in a basin already hobbled by tensions between endangered fisheries

  18. Western water and climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dettinger, Michael; Udall, Bradley; Georgakakos, Aris

    2015-12-01

    The western United States is a region long defined by water challenges. Climate change adds to those historical challenges, but does not, for the most part, introduce entirely new challenges; rather climate change is likely to stress water supplies and resources already in many cases stretched to, or beyond, natural limits. Projections are for continued and, likely, increased warming trends across the region, with a near certainty of continuing changes in seasonality of snowmelt and streamflows, and a strong potential for attendant increases in evaporative demands. Projections of future precipitation are less conclusive, although likely the northern-most West will see precipitation increases while the southernmost West sees declines. However, most of the region lies in a broad area where some climate models project precipitation increases while others project declines, so that only increases in precipitation uncertainties can be projected with any confidence. Changes in annual and seasonal hydrographs are likely to challenge water managers, users, and attempts to protect or restore environmental flows, even where annual volumes change little. Other impacts from climate change (e.g., floods and water-quality changes) are poorly understood and will likely be location dependent. In this context, four iconic river basins offer glimpses into specific challenges that climate change may bring to the West. The Colorado River is a system in which overuse and growing demands are projected to be even more challenging than climate-change-induced flow reductions. The Rio Grande offers the best example of how climate-change-induced flow declines might sink a major system into permanent drought. The Klamath is currently projected to face the more benign precipitation future, but fisheries and irrigation management may face dire straits due to warming air temperatures, rising irrigation demands, and warming waters in a basin already hobbled by tensions between endangered fisheries

  19. Joint science academies' statement:Global response to climate change

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2005-01-01

    @@ Climate change is real There will always be uncertainty in understanding a system as complex as the world's climate. However there is now strong evidence that significant global warming is occurring1.

  20. Climate change and related activities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The production and consumption of energy contributes to the concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere and is the focus of other environmental concerns as well. Yet the use of energy contributes to worldwide economic growth and development. If we are to achieve environmentally sound economic growth, we must develop and deploy energy technologies that contribute to global stewardship. The Department of Energy carries out an aggressive scientific research program to address some of the key uncertainties associated with the climate change issue. Of course, research simply to study the science of global climate change is not enough. At the heart of any regime of cost-effective actions to address the possibility of global climate change will be a panoply of new technologies-technologies both to provide the services we demand and to use energy more efficiently than in the past. These, too, are important areas of responsibility for the Department. This report is a brief description of the Department's activities in scientific research, technology development, policy studies, and international cooperation that are directly related to or have some bearing on the issue of global climate change

  1. Climate change - global warming

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    An explanation about climate, weather, climate changes. What is a greenhouse effect, i.e. global warming and reasons which contribute to this effect. Greenhouse gases (GHG) and GWP (Global Warming Potential) as a factor for estimating their influence on the greenhouse effect. Indicators of the climate changes in the previous period by known international institutions, higher concentrations of global average temperature. Projecting of likely scenarios for the future climate changes and consequences of them on the environment and human activities: industry, energy, agriculture, water resources. The main points of the Kyoto Protocol and problems in its realization. The need of preparing a country strategy concerning the acts of the Kyoto Protocol, suggestions which could contribute in the preparation of the strategy. A special attention is pointed to the energy, its resources, the structure of energy consumption and the energy efficiency. (Author)

  2. Sustain : the climate change challenge

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This special report on climate change and greenhouse gas emissions focused on widely held current opinions which indicate that average global surface temperatures are increasing. The potential consequences of climate change can include rising sea levels, drought storms, disease, and mass migration of people. While the global climate change theory is widely accepted, the report warns that there are still many uncertainties about how climate change occurs and what processes can offset human-caused emissions. Canada produces about 2 per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions. Carbon dioxide comprises 80 per cent of Canada's total emissions. It is well known that Canadians place a heavy demand on energy to heat and light their homes because of the northern climate, and on transportation fuels to move people, goods and services across vast distances. With the Kyoto Protocol of December 1997, developed countries agreed to legally binding greenhouse gas emission reductions of at least five per cent by 2008 to 2012. Canada agreed to a six per cent reduction below 1990 levels by 2010. Although Canada signed the Kyoto Protocol, it does not intend to ratify it until an implementation strategy has been developed with broad support. The goal is to develop a strategy by 1999. The oil and gas industry has in general improved its efficiency and reduced emissions on a per unit of production basis by installing new equipment and new operating practices that reduce greenhouse gas emissions to the atmosphere, and improve energy efficiency. The industry is conscious of its responsibility, and while not fully in agreement with the environmental doomsayers, it is prepared to take proactive actions now, albeit on a voluntary basis. What the industry wants is a balance between environmental and economic responsibility. Emissions trading' and 'joint implementation' are seen as two important tools to tackle climate change on a global basis. 4 figs

  3. Future methane, hydroxyl, and their uncertainties: key climate and emission parameters for future predictions

    OpenAIRE

    Holmes, C. D.; Prather, M. J.; O.A. Søvde; Myhre, G.

    2012-01-01

    Accurate prediction of future methane abundances following a climate scenario requires understanding the lifetime changes driven by anthropogenic emissions, meteorological factors, and chemistry-climate feedbacks. Uncertainty in any of these influences or the underlying processes implies uncertainty in future abundance and radiative forcing. We simulate methane lifetime in three chemical transport models (CTMs) – UCI CTM, GEOS-Chem, and Oslo CTM3 – over the period 1997–2009 and compare the mo...

  4. Managing Climate Change Refugia for Climate Adaptation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morelli, Toni Lyn; Daly, Christopher; Dobrowski, Solomon Z; Dulen, Deanna M; Ebersole, Joseph L; Jackson, Stephen T; Lundquist, Jessica D; Millar, Constance I; Maher, Sean P; Monahan, William B; Nydick, Koren R; Redmond, Kelly T; Sawyer, Sarah C; Stock, Sarah; Beissinger, Steven R

    2016-01-01

    Refugia have long been studied from paleontological and biogeographical perspectives to understand how populations persisted during past periods of unfavorable climate. Recently, researchers have applied the idea to contemporary landscapes to identify climate change refugia, here defined as areas relatively buffered from contemporary climate change over time that enable persistence of valued physical, ecological, and socio-cultural resources. We differentiate historical and contemporary views, and characterize physical and ecological processes that create and maintain climate change refugia. We then delineate how refugia can fit into existing decision support frameworks for climate adaptation and describe seven steps for managing them. Finally, we identify challenges and opportunities for operationalizing the concept of climate change refugia. Managing climate change refugia can be an important option for conservation in the face of ongoing climate change. PMID:27509088

  5. Managing Climate Change Refugia for Climate Adaptation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daly, Christopher; Dobrowski, Solomon Z.; Dulen, Deanna M.; Ebersole, Joseph L.; Jackson, Stephen T.; Lundquist, Jessica D.; Millar, Constance I.; Maher, Sean P.; Monahan, William B.; Nydick, Koren R.; Redmond, Kelly T.; Sawyer, Sarah C.; Stock, Sarah; Beissinger, Steven R.

    2016-01-01

    Refugia have long been studied from paleontological and biogeographical perspectives to understand how populations persisted during past periods of unfavorable climate. Recently, researchers have applied the idea to contemporary landscapes to identify climate change refugia, here defined as areas relatively buffered from contemporary climate change over time that enable persistence of valued physical, ecological, and socio-cultural resources. We differentiate historical and contemporary views, and characterize physical and ecological processes that create and maintain climate change refugia. We then delineate how refugia can fit into existing decision support frameworks for climate adaptation and describe seven steps for managing them. Finally, we identify challenges and opportunities for operationalizing the concept of climate change refugia. Managing climate change refugia can be an important option for conservation in the face of ongoing climate change. PMID:27509088

  6. Setting Climate Mitigation Targets in the Face of Uncertainty

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raupach, M. R.

    2012-12-01

    Uncertainty in climate science is well known, and at least some of it may be irreducible. However, the presence of uncertainty increases the urgency of action rather than reducing it. For the purpose of setting climate targets, earth system models can be construed as giant transfer functions mapping anthropogenic forcings to climate responses. Recent work [Allen et al. 2009, Nature 458, and related papers] has shown that the broad structure of this mapping is captured by a near-linear relationship T = αQ between cumulative CO2 emissions (Q) and global warming (T), both measured from the start of the industrial era. The slope α is about 1.8 K/EgC (67% probability range 1.2 to 2.7), or 1.8 degrees per trillion tonnes of carbon, both for the recent past and also for future projections. Near-linearity occurs because of compensating interactions between CO2 emissions trajectories, emissions of non-CO2 gases, and nonlinear carbon-climate dynamics. The implication is that a all-time quota of about 1100 PgC of carbon can be emitted before T =2 K warming is exceeded, with median (50%) probability. Half of this quota (550 PgC) has been emitted already through the industrial era (since 1750). Accounting for the need to turn around the present growth in emissions, the eventual decline in emissions to meet a target T =2 K has to be at more than 5% per year if mitigation starts immediately [Raupach et al. 2011, Tellus B 63]. With delay, the required rate of decline rapidly rises further. A 50% chance of meeting a target T =2 K is inadequate, because of paleoclimatic evidence for destabilising climate feedbacks in response to small changes in forcing. This evidence calls for either or both of two responses: a tougher target such as T = 1 K, or a higher chance of meeting the target. It is shown here that (1) the cumulative probability distribution of T at given Q is approximately log-normal; and (2) consequently, the cumulative emission Q needed to stay below a warming T with

  7. Poverty and Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    van der Vink, G.; Franco, E.; Fuckar, N. S.; Kalmbach, E. R.; Kayatta, E.; Lankester, K.; Rothschild, R. E.; Sarma, A.; Wall, M. L.

    2008-05-01

    The poor are disproportionately vulnerable to environmental change because they have the least amount of resources with which to adapt, and they live in areas (e.g. flood plains, low-lying coastal areas, and marginal drylands) that are particularly vulnerable to the manifestations of climate change. By quantifying the various environmental, economic, and social factors that can contribute to poverty, we identify populations that are most vulnerable to poverty and poverty traps due to environmental change. We define vulnerability as consisting of risk (probability of event and exposed elements), resiliency, and capacity to respond. Resiliency captures the social system's ability to absorb a natural disaster while retaining the same basic structure, organization, and ways of functioning, as well as its general capacity to adapt to stress and change. Capacity to respond is a surrogate for technical skills, institutional capabilities, and efficacy within countries and their economies. We use a "climate change multiplier" to account for possible increases in the frequency and severity of natural events due to climate change. Through various analytical methods, we quantify the social, political, economic, and environmental factors that contribute to poverty or poverty traps. These data sets are then used to determine vulnerability through raster multiplication in geospatial analysis. The vulnerability of a particular location to climate change is then mapped, with areas of high vulnerability clearly delineated. The success of this methodology indicates that it is indeed possible to quantify the effects of climate change on global vulnerability to natural disasters, and can be used as a mechanism to identify areas where proactive measures, such as improving adaptation or capacity to respond, can reduce the humanitarian and economic impacts of climate change.

  8. Current Climate Variability & Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diem, J.; Criswell, B.; Elliott, W. C.

    2013-12-01

    Current Climate Variability & Change is the ninth among a suite of ten interconnected, sequential labs that address all 39 climate-literacy concepts in the U.S. Global Change Research Program's Climate Literacy: The Essential Principles of Climate Sciences. The labs are as follows: Solar Radiation & Seasons, Stratospheric Ozone, The Troposphere, The Carbon Cycle, Global Surface Temperature, Glacial-Interglacial Cycles, Temperature Changes over the Past Millennium, Climates & Ecosystems, Current Climate Variability & Change, and Future Climate Change. All are inquiry-based, on-line products designed in a way that enables students to construct their own knowledge of a topic. Questions representative of various levels of Webb's depth of knowledge are embedded in each lab. In addition to the embedded questions, each lab has three or four essential questions related to the driving questions for the lab suite. These essential questions are presented as statements at the beginning of the material to represent the lab objectives, and then are asked at the end as questions to function as a summative assessment. For example, the Current Climate Variability & Change is built around these essential questions: (1) What has happened to the global temperature at the Earth's surface, in the middle troposphere, and in the lower stratosphere over the past several decades?; (2) What is the most likely cause of the changes in global temperature over the past several decades and what evidence is there that this is the cause?; and (3) What have been some of the clearly defined effects of the change in global temperature on the atmosphere and other spheres of the Earth system? An introductory Prezi allows the instructor to assess students' prior knowledge in relation to these questions, while also providing 'hooks' to pique their interest related to the topic. The lab begins by presenting examples of and key differences between climate variability (e.g., Mt. Pinatubo eruption) and

  9. Greenland climate change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Masson-Delmotte, Valérie; Swingedouw, Didier; Landais, Amaëlle;

    2012-01-01

    Climate archives available from deep-sea and marine shelf sediments, glaciers, lakes and ice cores in and around Greenland allow us to place the current trends in regional climate, ice sheet dynamics, and land surface changes in a broader perspective. We show that during the last decade (2000s...... during the last 10 000 years, highlighting the role of soil dynamics in past vegetation changes, and stressing the growing anthropogenic impacts on soil erosion during recent decades. Furthermore, past and present changes in atmospheric and oceanic heat advection appear to severely influence both...... regional climate and ice sheet dynamics. The magnitude and rate of future changes in Greenland temperature, in response to increasing greenhouse gas emissions, may be faster than any past abrupt events occurring under interglacial conditions. Projections indicate that within one century Greenland may...

  10. Prediction uncertainty of environmental change effects on temperate European biodiversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dormann, Carsten F; Schweiger, Oliver; Arens, P; Augenstein, I; Aviron, St; Bailey, Debra; Baudry, J; Billeter, R; Bugter, R; Bukácek, R; Burel, F; Cerny, M; Cock, Raphaël De; De Blust, Geert; DeFilippi, R; Diekötter, Tim; Dirksen, J; Durka, W; Edwards, P J; Frenzel, M; Hamersky, R; Hendrickx, Frederik; Herzog, F; Klotz, St; Koolstra, B; Lausch, A; Le Coeur, D; Liira, J; Maelfait, J P; Opdam, P; Roubalova, M; Schermann-Legionnet, Agnes; Schermann, N; Schmidt, T; Smulders, M J M; Speelmans, M; Simova, P; Verboom, J; van Wingerden, Walter; Zobel, M

    2008-03-01

    Observed patterns of species richness at landscape scale (gamma diversity) cannot always be attributed to a specific set of explanatory variables, but rather different alternative explanatory statistical models of similar quality may exist. Therefore predictions of the effects of environmental change (such as in climate or land cover) on biodiversity may differ considerably, depending on the chosen set of explanatory variables. Here we use multimodel prediction to evaluate effects of climate, land-use intensity and landscape structure on species richness in each of seven groups of organisms (plants, birds, spiders, wild bees, ground beetles, true bugs and hoverflies) in temperate Europe. We contrast this approach with traditional best-model predictions, which we show, using cross-validation, to have inferior prediction accuracy. Multimodel inference changed the importance of some environmental variables in comparison with the best model, and accordingly gave deviating predictions for environmental change effects. Overall, prediction uncertainty for the multimodel approach was only slightly higher than that of the best model, and absolute changes in predicted species richness were also comparable. Richness predictions varied generally more for the impact of climate change than for land-use change at the coarse scale of our study. Overall, our study indicates that the uncertainty introduced to environmental change predictions through uncertainty in model selection both qualitatively and quantitatively affects species richness projections. PMID:18070098

  11. The climatic change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    In order to take stock on the climatic change situation and initiatives at the beginning of 2006, the INES (National Institute on the Solar Energy) proposes this special document. It presents the Montreal conference of December 2005, realized to reinforced the actions of the international community against the greenhouse gases. The technical decisions decided at this conference are detailed. The document discusses also the causes and consequences of the climatic warming, the intervention sectors and the actions possibilities. (A.L.B.)

  12. Evaporation and Climate Change

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Brandsma, T.

    1993-01-01

    In this article the influence of climate change on evaporation is discussed. The emphasis is on open water evaporation. Three methods for calculating evaporation are compared considering only changes in temperature and factors directly dependent on temperature. The Penman-method is used to investiga

  13. What is the Top Priority on Climate Change?

    OpenAIRE

    Klemperer, Paul

    2009-01-01

    Action on climate change is urgently needed. Substantial uncertainty about the importance of the problem remains, but this uncertainty means we should worry more, not less, because while things may not be as bad as the most likely scenarios suggest, outcomes could also be a lot worse. What, therefore, should be the West’s top priority for climate change policy?

  14. Climate Change: Good for Us?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oblak, Jackie

    2000-01-01

    Presents an activity with the objective of encouraging students to think about the effects of climate change. Explains background information on dependence to climate and discuses whether climate change is important. Provides information for the activity, extensions, and evaluation. (YDS)

  15. Undocumented migration in response to climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riosmena, Fernando; Hunter, Lori M.; Runfola, Daniel M.

    2016-01-01

    In the face of climate change induced economic uncertainty, households may employ migration as an adaptation strategy to diversify their livelihood portfolio through remittances. However, it is unclear whether such climate migration will be documented or undocumented. In this study we combine detailed migration histories with daily temperature and precipitation information for 214 weather stations to investigate whether climate change more strongly impacts undocumented or documented migration from 68 rural Mexican municipalities to the U.S. during the years 1986–1999. We employ two measures of climate change, the warm spell duration index (WSDI) and the precipitation during extremely wet days (R99PTOT). Results from multi-level event-history models demonstrate that climate-related international migration from rural Mexico was predominantly undocumented. We conclude that programs to facilitate climate change adaptation in rural Mexico may be more effective in reducing undocumented border crossings than increased border fortification.

  16. Topologies of climate change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Blok, Anders

    2010-01-01

    Climate change is quickly becoming a ubiquitous socionatural reality, mediating extremes of sociospatial scale from the bodily to the planetary. Although environmentalism invites us to ‘think globally and act locally', the meaning of these scalar designations remains ambiguous. This paper explores...... the topological presuppositions of social theory in the context of global climate change, asking how carbon emissions ‘translate' into various sociomaterial forms. Staging a meeting between Tim Ingold's phenomenology of globes and spheres and the social topologies of actor-network theory (ANT), the paper advances...

  17. African lessons on climate change risks for agriculture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Müller, Christoph

    2013-01-01

    Climate change impact assessments on agriculture are subject to large uncertainties, as demonstrated in the present review of recent studies for Africa. There are multiple reasons for differences in projections, including uncertainties in greenhouse gas emissions and patterns of climate change; assumptions on future management, aggregation, and spatial extent; and methodological differences. Still, all projections agree that climate change poses a significant risk to African agriculture. Most projections also see the possibility of increasing agricultural production under climate change, especially if suitable adaptation measures are assumed. Climate change is not the only projected pressure on African agriculture, which struggles to meet demand today and may need to feed an additional one billion individuals by 2050. Development strategies are urgently needed, but they will need to consider future climate change and its inherent uncertainties. Science needs to show how existing synergies between climate change adaptation and development can be exploited.

  18. Uncertainty quantification and propagation in a complex human-environment system driven by fire and climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terando, A. J.; Reich, B. J.; Pacifici, K.

    2013-12-01

    Fire is an important disturbance process in many coupled natural-human systems. Changes in the frequency and severity of fires due to anthropogenic climate change could have significant costs to society and the plant and animal communities that are adapted to a particular fire regime Planning for these changes requires a robust model of the relationship between climate and fire that accounts for multiple sources of uncertainty that are present when simulating ecological and climatological processes. Here we model how anthropogenic climate change could affect the wildfire regime for a region in the Southeast US whose natural ecosystems are dependent on frequent, low-intensity fires while humans are at risk from large catastrophic fires. We develop a modeling framework that incorporates three major sources of uncertainty: (1) uncertainty in the ecological drivers of expected monthly area burned, (2) uncertainty in the environmental drivers influencing the probability of an extreme fire event, and (3) structural uncertainty in different downscaled climate models. In addition we use two policy-relevant emission scenarios (climate stabilization and 'business-as-usual') to characterize the uncertainty in future greenhouse gas forcings. We use a Bayesian framework to incorporate different sources of uncertainty including simulation of predictive errors and Stochastic Search Variable Selection. Our results suggest that although the mean process remains stationary, the probability of extreme fires declines through time, owing to the persistence of high atmospheric moisture content during the peak fire season that dampens the effect of increasing temperatures. Including multiple sources of uncertainty leads to wide prediction intervals, but is potentially more useful for decision-makers that will require adaptation strategies that are robust to rapid but uncertain climate and ecological change.

  19. Climate change and amphibians

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Corn, P. S.

    2005-01-01

    Full Text Available Amphibian life histories are exceedingly sensitive to temperature and precipitation, and there is good evidence that recent climate change has already resulted in a shift to breeding earlier in the year for some species. There are also suggestions that the recent increase in the occurrence of El Niño events has caused declines of anurans in Central America and is linked to elevated mortality of amphibian embryos in the northwestern United States. However, evidence linking amphibian declines in Central America to climate relies solely on correlations, and the mechanisms underlying the declines are not understood. Connections between embryo mortality and declines in abundance have not been demonstrated. Analyses of existing data have generally failed to find a link between climate and amphibian declines. It is likely, however, that future climate change will cause further declines of some amphibian species. Reduced soil moisture could reduce prey species and eliminate habitat. Reduced snowfall and increased summer evaporation could have dramatic effects on the duration or occurrence of seasonal wetlands, which are primary habitat for many species of amphibians. Climate change may be a relatively minor cause of current amphibian declines, but it may be the biggest future challenge to the persistence of many species

  20. Energy and Climate Change

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2007-06-15

    Climate change, and more specifically the carbon emissions from energy production and use, is one of the more vexing problems facing society today. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has just completed its latest assessment on the state of the science of climate change, on the potential consequences related to this change, and on the mitigation steps that could be implemented beginning now, particularly in the energy sector. Few people now doubt that anthropogenic climate change is real or that steps must be taken to deal with it. The World Energy Council has long recognized this serious concern and that in its role as the world's leading international energy organization, it can address the concerns of how to provide adequate energy for human well-being while sustaining our overall quality of life. It has now performed and published 15 reports and working papers on this subject. This report examines what has worked and what is likely to work in the future in this regard and provides policymakers with a practical roadmap to a low-carbon future and the steps needed to achieve it.

  1. Climate change velocity underestimates climate change exposure in mountainous regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dobrowski, Solomon Z.; Parks, Sean A.

    2016-01-01

    Climate change velocity is a vector depiction of the rate of climate displacement used for assessing climate change impacts. Interpreting velocity requires an assumption that climate trajectory length is proportional to climate change exposure; longer paths suggest greater exposure. However, distance is an imperfect measure of exposure because it does not quantify the extent to which trajectories traverse areas of dissimilar climate. Here we calculate velocity and minimum cumulative exposure (MCE) in degrees Celsius along climate trajectories for North America. We find that velocity is weakly related to MCE; each metric identifies contrasting areas of vulnerability to climate change. Notably, velocity underestimates exposure in mountainous regions where climate trajectories traverse dissimilar climates, resulting in high MCE. In contrast, in flat regions velocity is high where MCE is low, as these areas have negligible climatic resistance to movement. Our results suggest that mountainous regions are more climatically isolated than previously reported. PMID:27476545

  2. Climate change velocity underestimates climate change exposure in mountainous regions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dobrowski, Solomon Z; Parks, Sean A

    2016-01-01

    Climate change velocity is a vector depiction of the rate of climate displacement used for assessing climate change impacts. Interpreting velocity requires an assumption that climate trajectory length is proportional to climate change exposure; longer paths suggest greater exposure. However, distance is an imperfect measure of exposure because it does not quantify the extent to which trajectories traverse areas of dissimilar climate. Here we calculate velocity and minimum cumulative exposure (MCE) in degrees Celsius along climate trajectories for North America. We find that velocity is weakly related to MCE; each metric identifies contrasting areas of vulnerability to climate change. Notably, velocity underestimates exposure in mountainous regions where climate trajectories traverse dissimilar climates, resulting in high MCE. In contrast, in flat regions velocity is high where MCE is low, as these areas have negligible climatic resistance to movement. Our results suggest that mountainous regions are more climatically isolated than previously reported. PMID:27476545

  3. Climate change velocity underestimates climate change exposure in mountainous regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dobrowski, Solomon Z.; Parks, Sean A.

    2016-08-01

    Climate change velocity is a vector depiction of the rate of climate displacement used for assessing climate change impacts. Interpreting velocity requires an assumption that climate trajectory length is proportional to climate change exposure; longer paths suggest greater exposure. However, distance is an imperfect measure of exposure because it does not quantify the extent to which trajectories traverse areas of dissimilar climate. Here we calculate velocity and minimum cumulative exposure (MCE) in degrees Celsius along climate trajectories for North America. We find that velocity is weakly related to MCE; each metric identifies contrasting areas of vulnerability to climate change. Notably, velocity underestimates exposure in mountainous regions where climate trajectories traverse dissimilar climates, resulting in high MCE. In contrast, in flat regions velocity is high where MCE is low, as these areas have negligible climatic resistance to movement. Our results suggest that mountainous regions are more climatically isolated than previously reported.

  4. Choice of baseline climate data impacts projected species' responses to climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baker, David J; Hartley, Andrew J; Butchart, Stuart H M; Willis, Stephen G

    2016-07-01

    Climate data created from historic climate observations are integral to most assessments of potential climate change impacts, and frequently comprise the baseline period used to infer species-climate relationships. They are often also central to downscaling coarse resolution climate simulations from General Circulation Models (GCMs) to project future climate scenarios at ecologically relevant spatial scales. Uncertainty in these baseline data can be large, particularly where weather observations are sparse and climate dynamics are complex (e.g. over mountainous or coastal regions). Yet, importantly, this uncertainty is almost universally overlooked when assessing potential responses of species to climate change. Here, we assessed the importance of historic baseline climate uncertainty for projections of species' responses to future climate change. We built species distribution models (SDMs) for 895 African bird species of conservation concern, using six different climate baselines. We projected these models to two future periods (2040-2069, 2070-2099), using downscaled climate projections, and calculated species turnover and changes in species-specific climate suitability. We found that the choice of baseline climate data constituted an important source of uncertainty in projections of both species turnover and species-specific climate suitability, often comparable with, or more important than, uncertainty arising from the choice of GCM. Importantly, the relative contribution of these factors to projection uncertainty varied spatially. Moreover, when projecting SDMs to sites of biodiversity importance (Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas), these uncertainties altered site-level impacts, which could affect conservation prioritization. Our results highlight that projections of species' responses to climate change are sensitive to uncertainty in the baseline climatology. We recommend that this should be considered routinely in such analyses. PMID:26950769

  5. Choice of baseline climate data impacts projected species' responses to climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baker, David J; Hartley, Andrew J; Butchart, Stuart H M; Willis, Stephen G

    2016-07-01

    Climate data created from historic climate observations are integral to most assessments of potential climate change impacts, and frequently comprise the baseline period used to infer species-climate relationships. They are often also central to downscaling coarse resolution climate simulations from General Circulation Models (GCMs) to project future climate scenarios at ecologically relevant spatial scales. Uncertainty in these baseline data can be large, particularly where weather observations are sparse and climate dynamics are complex (e.g. over mountainous or coastal regions). Yet, importantly, this uncertainty is almost universally overlooked when assessing potential responses of species to climate change. Here, we assessed the importance of historic baseline climate uncertainty for projections of species' responses to future climate change. We built species distribution models (SDMs) for 895 African bird species of conservation concern, using six different climate baselines. We projected these models to two future periods (2040-2069, 2070-2099), using downscaled climate projections, and calculated species turnover and changes in species-specific climate suitability. We found that the choice of baseline climate data constituted an important source of uncertainty in projections of both species turnover and species-specific climate suitability, often comparable with, or more important than, uncertainty arising from the choice of GCM. Importantly, the relative contribution of these factors to projection uncertainty varied spatially. Moreover, when projecting SDMs to sites of biodiversity importance (Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas), these uncertainties altered site-level impacts, which could affect conservation prioritization. Our results highlight that projections of species' responses to climate change are sensitive to uncertainty in the baseline climatology. We recommend that this should be considered routinely in such analyses.

  6. Climate Change Education in Earth System Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hänsel, Stephanie; Matschullat, Jörg

    2013-04-01

    The course "Atmospheric Research - Climate Change" is offered to master Earth System Science students within the specialisation "Climate and Environment" at the Technical University Bergakademie Freiberg. This module takes a comprehensive approach to climate sciences, reaching from the natural sciences background of climate change via the social components of the issue to the statistical analysis of changes in climate parameters. The course aims at qualifying the students to structure the physical and chemical basics of the climate system including relevant feedbacks. The students can evaluate relevant drivers of climate variability and change on various temporal and spatial scales and can transform knowledge from climate history to the present and the future. Special focus is given to the assessment of uncertainties related to climate observations and projections as well as the specific challenges of extreme weather and climate events. At the end of the course the students are able to critically reflect and evaluate climate change related results of scientific studies and related issues in media. The course is divided into two parts - "Climate Change" and "Climate Data Analysis" and encompasses two lectures, one seminar and one exercise. The weekly "Climate change" lecture transmits the physical and chemical background for climate variation and change. (Pre)historical, observed and projected climate changes and their effects on various sectors are being introduced and discussed regarding their implications for society, economics, ecology and politics. The related seminar presents and discusses the multiple reasons for controversy in climate change issues, based on various texts. Students train the presentation of scientific content and the discussion of climate change aspects. The biweekly lecture on "Climate data analysis" introduces the most relevant statistical tools and methods in climate science. Starting with checking data quality via tools of exploratory

  7. Learning Progressions & Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parker, Joyce M.; de los Santos, Elizabeth X.; Anderson, Charles W.

    2015-01-01

    Our society is currently having serious debates about sources of energy and global climate change. But do students (and the public) have the requisite knowledge to engage these issues as informed citizenry? The learning-progression research summarized here indicates that only 10% of high school students typically have a level of understanding…

  8. Tackling Climate Change

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2011-01-01

    Representatives from nearly 200 countries and regions have gathered in Durban,South Africa,for the 17th session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the 7th session of the Meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol.The meeting is the follow-up conference to tacklin

  9. Corporate Climate Change

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2006-01-01

    The American Chamber of Commerce, the People's Republic of China (AmCham-China) and the American Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai recently released "American Corporate Experience in a Changing China: Insights From AmCham Business Climate Surveys, 1999-2005." Excerpts of the report follow:

  10. DTU Climate Change Technologies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    During 2008 and 2009, DTU held a workshop series focusing on assessment of and adaption to climate changes as well as on mitigation of green house gasses. In the workshops, a total of 1500 scientists, government officials and business leaders have outlined scenarios for technology development...

  11. Adaptation to climate change

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    J. Carmin; K. Tierney; E. Chu; L.M. Hunter; J.T. Roberts; L. Shi

    2015-01-01

    Climate change adaptation involves major global and societal challenges such as finding adequate and equitable adaptation funding and integrating adaptation and development programs. Current funding is insufficient. Debates between the Global North and South center on how best to allocate the financ

  12. Climate change and developing country interests

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Arndt, Channing; Chinowsky, Paul; Fant, Charles;

    We consider the interplay of climate change impacts, global mitigation policies, and the interests of developing countries to 2050. Focusing on Malawi, Mozambique, and Zambia, we employ a structural approach to biophysical and economic modeling that incorporates climate uncertainty and allows...... for rigorous comparison of climate, biophysical, and economic outcomes across global mitigation regimes. We find that effective global mitigation policies generate two sources of benefit. First, less distorted climate outcomes result in typically more favourable economic outcomes. Second, successful global...... developing countries in effective global mitigation policies, even in the relatively near term, with the likelihood of much larger benefits post 2050....

  13. Adapting to Uncertainty: Comparing Methodological Approaches to Climate Adaptation and Mitigation Policy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huda, J.; Kauneckis, D. L.

    2013-12-01

    Climate change adaptation represents a number of unique policy-making challenges. Foremost among these is dealing with the range of future climate impacts to a wide scope of inter-related natural systems, their interaction with social and economic systems, and uncertainty resulting from the variety of downscaled climate model scenarios and climate science projections. These cascades of uncertainty have led to a number of new approaches as well as a reexamination of traditional methods for evaluating risk and uncertainty in policy-making. Policy makers are required to make decisions and formulate policy irrespective of the level of uncertainty involved and while a debate continues regarding the level of scientific certainty required in order to make a decision, incremental change in the climate policy continues at multiple governance levels. This project conducts a comparative analysis of the range of methodological approaches that are evolving to address uncertainty in climate change policy. It defines 'methodologies' to include a variety of quantitative and qualitative approaches involving both top-down and bottom-up policy processes that attempt to enable policymakers to synthesize climate information into the policy process. The analysis examines methodological approaches to decision-making in climate policy based on criteria such as sources of policy choice information, sectors to which the methodology has been applied, sources from which climate projections were derived, quantitative and qualitative methods used to deal with uncertainty, and the benefits and limitations of each. A typology is developed to better categorize the variety of approaches and methods, examine the scope of policy activities they are best suited for, and highlight areas for future research and development.

  14. Challenges of climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Husaini, Amjad M

    2014-01-01

    Kashmir valley is a major saffron (Crocus sativus Kashmirianus) growing area of the world, second only to Iran in terms of production. In Kashmir, saffron is grown on uplands (termed in the local language as “Karewas”), which are lacustrine deposits located at an altitude of 1585 to 1677 m above mean sea level (amsl), under temperate climatic conditions. Kashmir, despite being one of the oldest historical saffron-producing areas faces a rapid decline of saffron industry. Among many other factors responsible for decline of saffron industry the preponderance of erratic rainfalls and drought-like situation have become major challenges imposed by climate change. Saffron has a limited coverage area as it is grown as a ‘niche crop’ and is a recognized “geographical indication,” growing under a narrow microclimatic condition. As such it has become a victim of climate change effects, which has the potential of jeopardizing the livelihood of thousands of farmers and traders associated with it. The paper discusses the potential and actual impact of climate change process on saffron cultivation in Kashmir; and the biotechnological measures to address these issues. PMID:25072266

  15. Africa and climate change

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Toulmin, Camilla; Huq, Saleemul

    2006-10-15

    Remember the scenes from New Orleans of flooded streets and scavenging people? One year on and little progress is evident in achieving the step-change needed in controlling greenhouse gases. Hurricane Katrina showed only too vividly the massive power of natural forces combined with inadequate preparation. The flood waters washed away and exposed fully the lack of planning and low priority given to securing life and livelihoods, especially of the more vulnerable groups in the community. If this is what a whirlwind can bring in the southern USA, what might we reap in further storms and droughts tomorrow in poorer parts of the world? New research findings point to the likelihood of larger, faster and more substantial changes to our climate system. The African continent is particularly vulnerable to adverse changes in climate, the evidence for which is becoming more and more stark.

  16. Assessing the near-term risk of climate uncertainty : interdependencies among the U.S. states.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Loose, Verne W.; Lowry, Thomas Stephen; Malczynski, Leonard A.; Tidwell, Vincent Carroll; Stamber, Kevin Louis; Reinert, Rhonda K.; Backus, George A.; Warren, Drake E.; Zagonel, Aldo A.; Ehlen, Mark Andrew; Klise, Geoffrey T.; Vargas, Vanessa N.

    2010-04-01

    Policy makers will most likely need to make decisions about climate policy before climate scientists have resolved all relevant uncertainties about the impacts of climate change. This study demonstrates a risk-assessment methodology for evaluating uncertain future climatic conditions. We estimate the impacts of climate change on U.S. state- and national-level economic activity from 2010 to 2050. To understand the implications of uncertainty on risk and to provide a near-term rationale for policy interventions to mitigate the course of climate change, we focus on precipitation, one of the most uncertain aspects of future climate change. We use results of the climate-model ensemble from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) Fourth Assessment Report 4 (AR4) as a proxy for representing climate uncertainty over the next 40 years, map the simulated weather from the climate models hydrologically to the county level to determine the physical consequences on economic activity at the state level, and perform a detailed 70-industry analysis of economic impacts among the interacting lower-48 states. We determine the industry-level contribution to the gross domestic product and employment impacts at the state level, as well as interstate population migration, effects on personal income, and consequences for the U.S. trade balance. We show that the mean or average risk of damage to the U.S. economy from climate change, at the national level, is on the order of $1 trillion over the next 40 years, with losses in employment equivalent to nearly 7 million full-time jobs.

  17. Confronting climate change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Emissions of greenhouse gases (GHGs), especially from energy production and use, and their impact on global climate emerged as a major national issue in the United States during the 1980s. As a result, Congress directed the US Department of Energy (DOE) to ask the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering to assess the current state of research and development (R ampersand D) in the United States in alternative energy sources, and to suggest energy R ampersand D strategies involving roles for both the public and private sectors, should the government want to give priority to stabilizing atmospheric concentrations of GHGs. The findings and recommendations of the Committee on Alternative Energy Research and Development Strategies, appointed by the National Research Council in response to Congress's directive, are provided in this report and summarized in this chapter. The energy R ampersand D strategies and actions recommended by the committee are structured to facilitate prudent and decisive responses by the United States, despite uncertainties regarding the effects of GHGs on global climate. 96 refs., 4 figs., 17 tabs

  18. Teaching Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Donoghue, A.

    2011-09-01

    In giving public presentations about climate change, we face the barriers of mis-information in the political debate and lack of science literacy that extends to science phobia for some. In climate issues, the later problem is compounded by the fact that the science - reconstruction of past climate through the use of proxy sources, such as isotopes of oxygen and hydrogen - is complex, making it more challenging for general audiences. Also, the process of science, particularly peer review, is suspected by some to be a way of keeping science orthodox instead of keeping it honest. I approach these barriers by focusing on the data and the fact that the data have been carefully acquired over decades and centuries by dedicated people with no political agenda. I have taught elderhostel courses twice and have given many public talks on this topic. Thus I have experience in this area to share with others. I would also like to learn of others' approaches to the vast amount of scientific information and getting past the politics. A special interest group on climate change will allow those of us to speak on this important topic to share how we approach both the science and the politics of this issue.

  19. Carbon cycle feedbacks and future climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friedlingstein, Pierre

    2015-11-13

    Climate and carbon cycle are tightly coupled on many timescales, from interannual to multi-millennial timescales. Observations always evidence a positive feedback, warming leading to release of carbon to the atmosphere; however, the processes at play differ depending on the timescales. State-of-the-art Earth System Models now represent these climate-carbon cycle feedbacks, always simulating a positive feedback over the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, although with substantial uncertainty. Recent studies now help to reduce this uncertainty. First, on short timescales, El Niño years record larger than average atmospheric CO2 growth rate, with tropical land ecosystems being the main drivers. These climate-carbon cycle anomalies can be used as emerging constraint on the tropical land carbon response to future climate change. Second, centennial variability found in last millennium records can be used to constrain the overall global carbon cycle response to climatic excursions. These independent methods point to climate-carbon cycle feedback at the low-end of the Earth System Models range, indicating that these models overestimate the carbon cycle sensitivity to climate change. These new findings also help to attribute the historical land and ocean carbon sinks to increase in atmospheric CO2 and climate change. PMID:26438284

  20. Outchasing climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Showstack, Randy

    Pygmy possums, monarch butterflies, spoon-billed sandpipers, and a number of trees and other plants could be among the species unable to migrate fast enough to new habitat in the face of potential global climate changes, according to an August 30 report by the Switzerland-based World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) and the U.S. based Clean-Air-Cool Planet (CACP), two conservation organizations.

  1. Climate uncertainty and implications for U.S. state-level risk assessment through 2050.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Loose, Verne W.; Lowry, Thomas Stephen; Malczynski, Leonard A.; Tidwell, Vincent Carroll; Stamber, Kevin Louis; Kelic, Andjelka; Backus, George A.; Warren, Drake E.; Zagonel, Aldo A.; Ehlen, Mark Andrew; Klise, Geoffrey T.; Vargas, Vanessa N.

    2009-10-01

    Decisions for climate policy will need to take place in advance of climate science resolving all relevant uncertainties. Further, if the concern of policy is to reduce risk, then the best-estimate of climate change impacts may not be so important as the currently understood uncertainty associated with realizable conditions having high consequence. This study focuses on one of the most uncertain aspects of future climate change - precipitation - to understand the implications of uncertainty on risk and the near-term justification for interventions to mitigate the course of climate change. We show that the mean risk of damage to the economy from climate change, at the national level, is on the order of one trillion dollars over the next 40 years, with employment impacts of nearly 7 million labor-years. At a 1% exceedance-probability, the impact is over twice the mean-risk value. Impacts at the level of individual U.S. states are then typically in the multiple tens of billions dollar range with employment losses exceeding hundreds of thousands of labor-years. We used results of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) Fourth Assessment Report 4 (AR4) climate-model ensemble as the referent for climate uncertainty over the next 40 years, mapped the simulated weather hydrologically to the county level for determining the physical consequence to economic activity at the state level, and then performed a detailed, seventy-industry, analysis of economic impact among the interacting lower-48 states. We determined industry GDP and employment impacts at the state level, as well as interstate population migration, effect on personal income, and the consequences for the U.S. trade balance.

  2. Climate change science - beyond IPCC

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    -average temperatures, temperature extremes and wind patterns; For the next two decades, a warming of about 0.20 C per decade is projected for a range of emission scenarios. Even if the concentrations of all greenhouse gases and aerosols had been kept constant at year 2000 levels, a further warming of about 0.1 0C per decade would be expected; Continued greenhouse gas emissions at or above current rates would cause further warming and induce many changes in the global climate system during the 21st century that would very likely be larger than those observed during the 20th century; Anthropogenic warming and sea level rise would continue for centuries due to the time scales associated with climate processes and feedbacks, even if greenhouse gas concentrations were to be stabilised. The question of whether the IPCC Assessment is conservative will be considered, and those aspects of climate change on which there is still considerable uncertainty and a lack of consensus will be noted and discussed

  3. Designing Global Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griffith, P. C.; ORyan, C.

    2012-12-01

    In a time when sensationalism rules the online world, it is best to keep things short. The people of the online world are not passing back and forth lengthy articles, but rather brief glimpses of complex information. This is the target audience we attempt to educate. Our challenge is then to attack not only ignorance, but also apathy toward global climate change, while conforming to popular modes of learning. When communicating our scientific material, it was difficult to determine what level of information was appropriate for our audience, especially with complex subject matter. Our unconventional approach for communicating the carbon crisis as it applies to global climate change caters to these 'recreational learners'. Using story-telling devices acquired from Carolyne's biomedical art background coupled with Peter's extensive knowledge of carbon cycle and ecosystems science, we developed a dynamic series of illustrations that capture the attention of a callous audience. Adapting complex carbon cycle and climate science into comic-book-style animations creates a channel between artist, scientist, and the general public. Brief scenes of information accompanied by text provide a perfect platform for visual learners, as well as fresh portrayals of stale material for the jaded. In this way art transcends the barriers of the cerebral and the abstract, paving the road to understanding.;

  4. Effects of climate uncertainties on welfare optimal investment streams into mitigation technologies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Held, H.; Kriegler, E.; Lessmann, K.; Lorenz, A.

    2009-04-01

    We discuss a stylised portfolio of climate change mitigation options and ask the following question: what is the intertemporally optimal mix of these options under the boundary condition of a climate guardrail and uncertainty about the temperature response to rising carbon dioxide concentrations? We impose a guardrail that requires the increase of global mean temperature T to be limited to 2K with at least a minimum probability P (e.g., P=0.75). The uncertainty about the temperature response is captured by a PDF for climate sensitivity and ocean heat uptake. For economic optimisation, we use an ensemble-version of the growth model MIND [1]. As a key results we show that robust climate protection paths will require aggressive mitigation measures [2]. In this context it is also possible to ask for the economic potential of reducing uncertainty in climate sensitivity [3] and ocean heat uptake [4] that is generically by orders of magnitude larger than the costs induced by the related research programmes. References [1] O. Edenhofer., N. Bauer, E. Kriegler: The Impact of Technological Change on Climate Protection and Welfare: Insights from the Model MIND. Ecological Economics, 54 (2-3): 277-292 (2005). [2] H. Held, E. Kriegler, K. Lessmann, O. Edenhofer, Efficient Climate Policies under Technology and Climate Uncertainty, Energy Economics, in press. [3] T. Schneider von Deimling, H. Held, A. Ganopolski, S. Rahmstorf, Climate sensitivity estimated from ensemble simulations of glacial climates, Climate Dynamics 27, 149-163, DOI 10.1007/s00382-006-0126-8 (2006). [4] A. Lorenz, Diploma Thesis, U Potsdam (2007).

  5. Strategy for Climate Change Adaptation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Torben Valdbjørn

    The absence of a global agreement on the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions calls for adaptation to climate change. The associated paper explains the need for climate change adaptation of the building stock and suggests a pattern for a strategic approach to how to reach the climate change...... adaptation needed. Issues that must be addressed in case a strategic approach is not developed, as the building sector is continuously investing in measures to adapt to climate change as impacts emerge are described....

  6. Economic impacts of climate change

    OpenAIRE

    Tol, Richard S.J.

    2015-01-01

    Climate change will probably have a limited impact on the economy and human welfare in the 21st century. The initial impacts of climate change may well be positive. In the long run, the negative impacts dominate the positive ones. Negative impacts will be substantially greater in poorer, hotter, and lower-lying countries. Poverty reduction complements greenhouse gas emissions reduction as a means to reduce climate change impacts. Climate change may affect the growth rate of the economy and ma...

  7. Coastal Risk Management in a Changing Climate

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    such as deltas, estuaries and wetlands, where many large cities and industrial areas are located. Integrated risk assessment tools for considering the effects of climate change and related uncertainties. Presents latest insights on coastal engineering defenses. Provides integrated guidelines for setting up......Existing coastal management and defense approaches are not well suited to meet the challenges of climate change and related uncertanities. Professionals in this field need a more dynamic, systematic and multidisciplinary approach. Written by an international group of experts, "Coastal Risk...... Management in a Changing Climate" provides innovative, multidisciplinary best practices for mitigating the effects of climate change on coastal structures. Based on the Theseus program, the book includes eight study sites across Europe, with specific attention to the most vulnerable coastal environments...

  8. Climate change, agriculture and poverty

    OpenAIRE

    Hertel, Thomas W.; Rosch, Stephanie D

    2010-01-01

    Although much has been written about climate change and poverty as distinct and complex problems, the link between them has received little attention. Understanding this link is vital for the formulation of effective policy responses to climate change. This paper focuses on agriculture as a primary means by which the impacts of climate change are transmitted to the poor, and as a sector at...

  9. Climatic change and impacts: a general introduction

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    These proceedings are divided into six parts containing 29 technical papers. 1. An Overview of the Climatic System, 2. Past climate Changes, 3. Climate Processes and Climate Modelling, 4. Greenhouse Gas Induced Climate Change, 5. Climatic Impacts, 6. STUDENTS' PAPERS

  10. État des connaissances et incertitudes sur le changement climatique induit par les activités humainesScientific basis and uncertainties of human induced climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duplessy, Jean-Claude

    2001-12-01

    During the 20th century, the mean temperature of the air at the ground level has increased by 0.6±0.2 °C and the warmest air temperatures occurred after 1980. These were significantly warmer than those of the last millennium. Simultaneously, rain and drought, cold and heat wave frequencies have changed, mountain glaciers retreated and the sea-level increased by ˜10 cm. This warming was at least in part induced by human activities and will continue during the next decades. Its amplitude will depend on the rate of greenhouse gas and sulphate aerosols emissions, i.e. on energetic scenarios. Pending scientific uncertainties include cloud variations and interactions between the physical parts of the climate system and the biogeochemical cycles and the biosphere.

  11. Scenarios of climate change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This article provides an overview of current and prospected climate changes, their causes and implied threats, and of a possible route to keep the changes within a tolerable level. The global mean temperature has up to 2005 risen by almost 0.8 C deg., and the change expected by 2100 is as large as glacial-interglacial changes in the past, which were commonly spread out over 10 000 years. As is well known, the principle actor is man-made CO2, which, together with other anthropogenic gases, enhances the atmosphere's greenhouse effect. The only man-made cooling agent appears to be atmospheric aerosols. Atmospheric CO2 has now reached levels unprecedented during the past several million years. Principal threats are a greatly reduced biodiversity (species extinction), changes in the atmospheric precipitation pattern, more frequent weather extremes, and not the least, sea level rise. The expected precipitation pattern will enhance water scarcity in and around regions that suffer from water shortage already, affecting many countries. Sea level rise will act on a longer time scale. It is expected to amount to more than 50 cm by 2100, and over the coming centuries the potential rise is of the order of 10 m. A global-mean temperature increase of 2 C deg. is often quoted as a safe limit, beyond which irreversible effects must be expected. To achieve that limit, a major, rapid, and coordinated international effort will be needed. Up to the year 2050, the man-made CO2 releases must be reduced by at least 50%. This must be accompanied by a complete overhaul of the global energy supply toward depending increasingly on the Sun's supply of energy, both directly and in converted form, such as wind energy. Much of the information and insight available today has been generated by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), in particular its Fourth Assessment Report of 2007, which greatly advanced both public attention and political action. (author)

  12. Turning points in climate change adaptation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Saskia Elisabeth. Werners

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Concerned decision makers increasingly pose questions as to whether current management practices are able to cope with climate change and increased climate variability. This signifies a shift in the framing of climate change from asking what its potential impacts are to asking whether it induces policy failure and unacceptable change. In this paper, we explore the background, feasibility, and consequences of this new framing. We focus on the specific situation in which a social-political threshold of concern is likely to be exceeded as a result of climate change, requiring consideration of alternative strategies. Action is imperative when such a situation is conceivable, and at this point climate change becomes particularly relevant to decision makers. We call this situation an "adaptation turning point." The assessment of adaptation turning points converts uncertainty surrounding the extent of a climate impact into a time range over which it is likely that specific thresholds will be exceeded. This can then be used to take adaptive action. Despite the difficulty in identifying adaptation turning points and the relative newness of the approach, experience so far suggests that the assessment generates a meaningful dialogue between stakeholders and scientists. Discussion revolves around the amount of change that is acceptable; how likely it is that unacceptable, or more favorable, conditions will be reached; and the adaptation pathways that need to be considered under these circumstances. Defining and renegotiating policy objectives under climate change are important topics in the governance of adaptation.

  13. The climatic change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This paper has been developed to show how the future of the climate of our planet could become. The factors that takes places in this possible change are also carefully explained. The human action over the environment is probably disturbing the atmospheric system. The processes that involves this perturbations are shown: pollution, fires in hugh regions such as Amazonia Central Australia, Central and East Africa and some others. Factors like these seems are destroying the ozone shell. We also explain the problems to be sure that the expectatives for the future are reliable. Finally, we propose some solutions for this situation. Special situations like nuclear winter or the desertization are also included. (Author)

  14. Uncertainty vs. learning in climate policy: Some classical results and new directions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lange, A. [Univ. of Maryland (United States); Treich, N. [Univ. of Toulouse (France)

    2007-07-01

    Climate policy decisions today have to be made under substantial uncertainty: the impact of accumulating greenhouse gases in the atmosphere is not perfectly known, the future economic and social consequences of climate change, in particular the valuation of possible damages, are uncertain. However, learning will change the basis of making future decisions on abatement policies. These important issues of uncertainty and learning are often presented in a colloquial sense. Two opposing effects are typically put forward: First, uncertainty about future climate damage, which is often associated with the possibility of a catastrophic scenario is said to give a premium to slow down global warming and therefore to increase abatement efforts today. Second learning opportunities will reduce scientific undertainty about climate damage over time. This is often used as an argument to postpone abatement efforts until new information is received. The effects of uncertainty and learning on the optimal design of current climate policy are still much debated both in the academic and the political arena. In this paper, the authors study and contrast the effect of uncertainty and learning in a two-decision model that encompasses most existing microeconomics models of climate change. They first consider the common expected utility framework: While uncertainty has generally no or a negative effect on welfare, learning has always a positive, and thus opposite, effect. The effects of both uncertainty and learning on decisions are less clear. Neither uncertainty nor learning can be used as an argument to increase or reduce emissions today, independently on the degree of risk aversion of the decision-marker and on the nature of irreversibility constraints. The authors then deviate from the expected utility framework and consider a model with ambiguity aversion. The model accounts well for situations of imprecise or multiple probability distributions, as present in the context of climate

  15. Strategy for Climate Change Adaptation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Torben Valdbjørn

    2013-01-01

    . This absence of an agreement calls for adaptation to climate change. Emphasis should be put on buildings, as they play a vital economic and social role in society and are vulnerable to climate change. Therefore, the building stock deserves its own policy and implementation plans as well as tools that enable...... adequate and cost-efficient adaptation to climate change. This paper explains the need for climate change adaptation of the building stock and suggests a pattern for a strategic approach to how to reach the climate change adaptation needed. The suggested and presented need of a strategic approach is based...... on three main initiatives consisting of the need to examine the potential impacts of climate change on the building stock, the need to assess and develop a roadmap of current and future adaptation measures that can withstand the effects of climate change, and the need to engage relevant stakeholders...

  16. A Survey of the Relationship between Climatic Heat Stress Indices and Fundamental Milk Components Considering Uncertainty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohammad Reza Marami Milani

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available The main purpose of this study is to assess the relationship between four bioclimatic indices for cattle (environmental stress, heat load, modified heat load, and respiratory rate predictor indices and three main milk components (fat, protein, and milk yield considering uncertainty. The climate parameters used to calculate the climate indices were taken from the NASA-Modern Era Retrospective-Analysis for Research and Applications (NASA-MERRA reanalysis from 2002 to 2010. Cow milk data were considered for the same period from April to September when the cows use the natural pasture. The study is based on a linear regression analysis using correlations as a summarizing diagnostic. Bootstrapping is used to represent uncertainty information in the confidence intervals. The main results identify an interesting relationship between the milk compounds and climate indices under all climate conditions. During spring, there are reasonably high correlations between the fat and protein concentrations vs. the climate indices, whereas there are insignificant dependencies between the milk yield and climate indices. During summer, the correlation between the fat and protein concentrations with the climate indices decreased in comparison with the spring results, whereas the correlation for the milk yield increased. This methodology is suggested for studies investigating the impacts of climate variability/change on food and agriculture using short term data considering uncertainty.

  17. Identification and Categorization of Climate Change Risks

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHANG Yuehong; WU Shaohong; DAI Erfu; LIU Dengwei; YIN Yunhe

    2008-01-01

    The scientific evidence that climate is changing due to greenhouse gas emission is now incontestable,which may put many social,biological,and geophysical systems in the world at risk.In this paper,we first identified main risks induced from or aggravated by climate change.Then we categorized them applying a new risk categorization system brought forward by Renn in a framework of International Risk Governance Council.We proposed that "uncertainty" could be treated as the classification criteria.Based on this,we established a quantitative method with fuzzy set theory,in which "confidence" and "likelihood",the main quantitative terms for expressing uncertainties in IPCC,were used as the feature parameters to construct the fuzzy membership functions of four risk types.According to the maximum principle,most climate change risks identified were classified into the appropriate risk types.In the mean time,given that not all the quantitative terms are available,a qualitative approach was also adopted as a complementary classification method.Finally,we get the preliminary results of climate change risk categorization,which might lay the foundation for the future integrated risk management of climate change.

  18. NPOESS, Essential Climates Variables and Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forsythe-Newell, S. P.; Bates, J. J.; Barkstrom, B. R.; Privette, J. L.; Kearns, E. J.

    2008-12-01

    Advancement in understanding, predicting and mitigating against climate change implies collaboration, close monitoring of Essential Climate Variable (ECV)s through development of Climate Data Record (CDR)s and effective action with specific thematic focus on human and environmental impacts. Towards this end, NCDC's Scientific Data Stewardship (SDS) Program Office developed Climate Long-term Information and Observation system (CLIO) for satellite data identification, characterization and use interrogation. This "proof-of-concept" online tool provides the ability to visualize global CDR information gaps and overlaps with options to temporally zoom-in from satellite instruments to climate products, data sets, data set versions and files. CLIO provides an intuitive one-stop web site that displays past, current and planned launches of environmental satellites in conjunction with associated imagery and detailed information. This tool is also capable of accepting and displaying Web-based input from Subject Matter Expert (SME)s providing a global to sub-regional scale perspective of all ECV's and their impacts upon climate studies. SME's can access and interact with temporal data from the past and present, or for future planning of products, datasets/dataset versions, instruments, platforms and networks. CLIO offers quantifiable prioritization of ECV/CDR impacts that effectively deal with climate change issues, their associated impacts upon climate, and this offers an intuitively objective collaboration and consensus building tool. NCDC's latest tool empowers decision makers and the scientific community to rapidly identify weaknesses and strengths in climate change monitoring strategies and significantly enhances climate change collaboration and awareness.

  19. Mapping Vulnerability to Climate Change

    OpenAIRE

    Heltberg, Rasmus; Bonch-Osmolovskiy, Misha

    2011-01-01

    This paper develops a methodology for regional disaggregated estimation and mapping of the areas that are ex-ante the most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change and variability and applies it to Tajikistan, a mountainous country highly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. The authors construct the vulnerability index as a function of exposure to climate variability and natura...

  20. Optimal portfolio design to reduce climate-related conservation uncertainty in the Prairie Pothole Region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ando, Amy W; Mallory, Mindy L

    2012-04-24

    Climate change is likely to alter the spatial distributions of species and habitat types but the nature of such change is uncertain. Thus, climate change makes it difficult to implement standard conservation planning paradigms. Previous work has suggested some approaches to cope with such uncertainty but has not harnessed all of the benefits of risk diversification. We adapt Modern Portfolio Theory (MPT) to optimal spatial targeting of conservation activity, using wetland habitat conservation in the Prairie Pothole Region (PPR) as an example. This approach finds the allocations of conservation activity among subregions of the planning area that maximize the expected conservation returns for a given level of uncertainty or minimize uncertainty for a given expected level of returns. We find that using MPT instead of simple diversification in the PPR can achieve a value of the conservation objective per dollar spent that is 15% higher for the same level of risk. MPT-based portfolios can also have 21% less uncertainty over benefits or 6% greater expected benefits than the current portfolio of PPR conservation. Total benefits from conservation investment are higher if returns are defined in terms of benefit-cost ratios rather than benefits alone. MPT-guided diversification can work to reduce the climate-change-induced uncertainty of future ecosystem-service benefits from many land policy and investment initiatives, especially when outcomes are negatively correlated between subregions of a planning area.

  1. Uncertainty and dissent in climate risk assessment : a post-normal perspective

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sluijs, J.P. van der

    2012-01-01

    Uncertainty complexity and dissent make climate change hard to tackle with normal scientific procedures. In a post-normal perspective the normal science task of “getting the facts right” is still regarded as necessary but no longer as fully feasible nor as sufficient to interface science and policy.

  2. Changing heathlands in a changing climate

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ransijn, Johannes

    Atmospheric CO2 concentrations and temperatures are rising and precipitation regimes are changing at global scale. How ecosystem will be affected by global climatic change is dependent on the responses of plants and plant communities. This thesis focuses on how climate change affects heathland......) a study on the effects of elevated atmospheric CO2-concentration, warming and drought on the photosynthetic capacity and phenology of C. vulgaris and D. flexuosa in an outdoor climate change experiment on a grassy heathland in Denmark; 4) a study on climate change impacts on the competitive interactions...... between C. vulgaris and D. flexuosa in the same climate change experiment and 5) a study where we compared the responses of shrubland plant communities to experimental warming and recurrent experimental droughts in seven climate change experiments across Europe. Heathland vegetation dynamics are slow...

  3. Assessing climate adaptation options and uncertainties for cereal systems in West Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guan, K.; Sultan, B.; Biasutti, M.; Lobell, D. B.

    2015-12-01

    The already fragile agriculture production system in West Africa faces further challenges in meeting food security in the coming decades, primarily due to a fast increasing population and risks of climate change. Successful adaptation of agriculture should not only benefit in the current climate but should also reduce negative (or enhance positive) impacts for climate change. Assessment of various possible adaptation options and their uncertainties provides key information for prioritizing adaptation investments. Here, based on the several robust aspects of climate projections in this region (i.e. temperature increases and rainfall pattern shifts), we use two well-validated crop models (i.e. APSIM and SARRA-H) and an ensemble of downscaled climate forcing to assess five possible and realistic adaptation options (late sowing, intensification, thermal time increase, water harvesting and increased resilience to heat stress) in West Africa for the staple crop production of sorghum. We adopt a new assessment framework to account for both the impacts of adaptation options in current climate and their ability to reduce impacts of future climate change, and also consider changes in both mean yield and its variability. Our results reveal that most proposed "adaptation options" are not more beneficial in the future than in the current climate, i.e. not really reduce the climate change impacts. Increased temperature resilience during grain number formation period is the main adaptation that emerges. We also find that changing from the traditional to modern cultivar, and later sowing in West Sahel appear to be robust adaptations.

  4. Climate Change and Poverty Reduction

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Anderson, Simon

    2011-08-15

    Climate change will make it increasingly difficult to achieve and sustain development goals. This is largely because climate effects on poverty remain poorly understood, and poverty reduction strategies do not adequately support climate resilience. Ensuring effective development in the face of climate change requires action on six fronts: investing in a stronger climate and poverty evidence base; applying the learning about development effectiveness to how we address adaptation needs; supporting nationally derived, integrated policies and programmes; including the climate-vulnerable poor in developing strategies; and identifying how mitigation strategies can also reduce poverty and enable adaptation.

  5. Climate Change and Maize Yield in Iowa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Hong; Twine, Tracy E; Girvetz, Evan

    2016-01-01

    Climate is changing across the world, including the major maize-growing state of Iowa in the USA. To maintain crop yields, farmers will need a suite of adaptation strategies, and choice of strategy will depend on how the local to regional climate is expected to change. Here we predict how maize yield might change through the 21st century as compared with late 20th century yields across Iowa, USA, a region representing ideal climate and soils for maize production that contributes substantially to the global maize economy. To account for climate model uncertainty, we drive a dynamic ecosystem model with output from six climate models and two future climate forcing scenarios. Despite a wide range in the predicted amount of warming and change to summer precipitation, all simulations predict a decrease in maize yields from late 20th century to middle and late 21st century ranging from 15% to 50%. Linear regression of all models predicts a 6% state-averaged yield decrease for every 1°C increase in warm season average air temperature. When the influence of moisture stress on crop growth is removed from the model, yield decreases either remain the same or are reduced, depending on predicted changes in warm season precipitation. Our results suggest that even if maize were to receive all the water it needed, under the strongest climate forcing scenario yields will decline by 10-20% by the end of the 21st century.

  6. Conservation and adaptation to climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brooke, Cassandra

    2008-12-01

    The need to adapt to climate change has become increasingly apparent, and many believe the practice of biodiversity conservation will need to alter to face this challenge. Conservation organizations are eager to determine how they should adapt their practices to climate change. This involves asking the fundamental question of what adaptation to climate change means. Most studies on climate change and conservation, if they consider adaptation at all, assume it is equivalent to the ability of species to adapt naturally to climate change as stated in Article 2 of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. Adaptation, however, can refer to an array of activities that range from natural adaptation, at one end of the spectrum, to sustainability science in coupled human and natural systems at the other. Most conservation organizations deal with complex systems in which adaptation to climate change involves making decisions on priorities for biodiversity conservation in the face of dynamic risks and involving the public in these decisions. Discursive methods such as analytic deliberation are useful for integrating scientific knowledge with public perceptions and values, particularly when large uncertainties and risks are involved. The use of scenarios in conservation planning is a useful way to build shared understanding at the science-policy interface. Similarly, boundary organizations-organizations or institutions that bridge different scales or mediate the relationship between science and policy-could prove useful for managing the transdisciplinary nature of adaptation to climate change, providing communication and brokerage services and helping to build adaptive capacity. The fact that some nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) are active across the areas of science, policy, and practice makes them well placed to fulfill this role in integrated assessments of biodiversity conservation and adaptation to climate change. PMID:18759775

  7. Climate change and human health

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Warren, John A; Berner, James E; Curtis, Tine

    2005-01-01

    In northern regions, climate change can include changes in precipitation magnitude and frequency, reductions in sea ice extent and thickness, and climate warming and cooling. These changes can increase the frequency and severity of storms, flooding, or erosion; other changes may include drought o...

  8. Climate changes and biodiversity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    As some people forecast an average temperature increase between 1 and 3.5 degrees by the end of the century, with higher increases under high latitudes (it could reach 8 degrees in some regions of Canada), other changes will occur: precipitations, sea level rise, reductions in polar ice, extreme climatic events, glacier melting, and so on. The author discusses how these changes will impact biodiversity as they will threat habitat and living conditions of many species. Some studies assess a loss of 15 to 37 per cent of biodiversity by 2050. Moreover, physiology is influenced by temperature: for some species, higher temperatures favour the development of female embryos, or the increase of their population, or may result in an evolution of their reproduction strategy. Life rhythm will also change, for plants as well as for animals. Species will keep on changing their distribution area, but some others will not be able to and are therefore threatened. Finally, as the evolutions concern their vectors, some diseases will spread in new regions

  9. Climate change, wine, and conservation

    OpenAIRE

    Hannah, L.; Roehrdanz, PR; Ikegami, M; Shepard, AV; Shaw; Tabor, G; Zhi, L; Marquet, PA; Hijmans, RJ

    2013-01-01

    Climate change is expected to impact ecosystems directly, such as through shifting climatic controls on species ranges, and indirectly, for example through changes in human land use that may result in habitat loss. Shifting patterns of agricultural production in response to climate change have received little attention as a potential impact pathway for ecosystems. Wine grape production provides a good test case for measuring indirect impacts mediated by changes in agriculture, because viticul...

  10. Climate change and catchment hydrology

    OpenAIRE

    Murphy, Conor

    2013-01-01

    Climate change is expected to alter catchment hydrology through changes in extremes of flooding and drought. River catchments are complex, dynamic systems and it is important to develop our understanding of how these systems are likely to respond to changes in climate. Work is ongoing in using EC-Earth simulations to further our understanding of how climate change will affect catchment hydrology and flood risk. In Ireland, the importance of this task is emphasised ...

  11. Climate variability and vulnerability to climate change: a review

    OpenAIRE

    Thornton, Philip K.; Polly J Ericksen; Herrero, Mario; Challinor, Andrew J.

    2014-01-01

    The focus of the great majority of climate change impact studies is on changes in mean climate. In terms of climate model output, these changes are more robust than changes in climate variability. By concentrating on changes in climate means, the full impacts of climate change on biological and human systems are probably being seriously underestimated. Here, we briefly review the possible impacts of changes in climate variability and the frequency of extreme events on biological and food syst...

  12. Climate change and marine life

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Richardson, Anthony J.; Brown, Christopher J.; Brander, Keith;

    2012-01-01

    A Marine Climate Impacts Workshop was held from 29 April to 3 May 2012 at the US National Center of Ecological Analysis and Synthesis in Santa Barbara. This workshop was the culmination of a series of six meetings over the past three years, which had brought together 25 experts in climate change...... ecology, analysis of large datasets, palaeontology, marine ecology and physical oceanography. Aims of these workshops were to produce a global synthesis of climate impacts on marine biota, to identify sensitive habitats and taxa, to inform the current Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC......) process, and to strengthen research into ecological impacts of climate change...

  13. Philosophy of climate science part I: observing climate change

    OpenAIRE

    Frigg, Roman; Thompson, Erica; Werndl, Charlotte

    2015-01-01

    This is the first of three parts of an introduction to the philosophy of climate science. In this first part about observing climate change, the topics of definitions of climate and climate change, data sets and data models, detection of climate change, and attribution of climate change will be discussed.

  14. Climate change policy position

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP) is a firm believer in the need to take action to mitigate the risks associated with climate change, and that clear government policy is called for. The principles of sustainable development must guide this policy development effort. The initiatives required to address greenhouse gas emissions over both the short and long term must be carefully considered, and it is up to industries to ensure their production efficiency and emission intensity. Promoting improved performance of industries in Canada and developing technology that can be deployed internationally for larger global effects represents Canada's best contribution to progress on greenhouse gas emissions. The increase in energy demand along with increases in population and economic growth have contributed to an increase in greenhouse gas emissions despite improved energy efficiency in industry. Significant damage to the economy will result if Canada is to meet its commitment under the Kyoto Protocol, forcing the country to buy large quantities of foreign credits instead of using those funds for increased research and development. CAPP indicated that an effective plan must be: balanced, equitable, responsible, competitive, focused on technology and innovation, and based on agreements on sectoral plans. Each of these principles were discussed, followed by the fundamentals of approach for upstream oil and gas. The framework for climate change policy was described as well as the elements of a sector plan. CAPP wants to work with all levels of government on an appropriate plan for Canada, that considers our unique circumstances. Canada can play a significant role on the international stage by properly implementing the policy position proposed by the CAPP without unnecessary risks to the economy. refs

  15. Climate Change Modelling and Its Roles to Chinese Crops Yield

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    JU Hui; LIN Er-da; Tim Wheeler; Andrew Challinor; JIANG Shuai

    2013-01-01

    Climate has been changing in the last fifty years in China and will continue to change regardless any efforts for mitigation. Agriculture is a climate-dependent activity and highly sensitive to climate changes and climate variability. Understanding the interactions between climate change and agricultural production is essential for society stable development of China. The first mission is to fully understand how to predict future climate and link it with agriculture production system. In this paper, recent studies both domestic and international are reviewed in order to provide an overall image of the progress in climate change researches. The methods for climate change scenarios construction are introduced. The pivotal techniques linking crop model and climate models are systematically assessed and climate change impacts on Chinese crops yield among model results are summarized. The study found that simulated productions of grain crop inherit uncertainty from using different climate models, emission scenarios and the crops simulation models. Moreover, studies have different spatial resolutions, and methods for general circulation model (GCM) downscaling which increase the uncertainty for regional impacts assessment. However, the magnitude of change in crop production due to climate change (at 700 ppm CO2 eq correct) appears within ±10%for China in these assessments. In most literatures, the three cereal crop yields showed decline under climate change scenarios and only wheat in some region showed increase. Finally, the paper points out several gaps in current researches which need more studies to shorten the distance for objective recognizing the impacts of climate change on crops. The uncertainty for crop yield projection is associated with climate change scenarios, CO2 fertilization effects and adaptation options. Therefore, more studies on the fields such as free air CO2 enrichment experiment and practical adaptations implemented need to be carried out.

  16. Communicating Climate Uncertainties: Challenges and Opportunities Related to Spatial Scales, Extreme Events, and the Warming 'Hiatus'

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casola, J. H.; Huber, D.

    2013-12-01

    Many media, academic, government, and advocacy organizations have achieved sophistication in developing effective messages based on scientific information, and can quickly translate salient aspects of emerging climate research and evolving observations. However, there are several ways in which valid messages can be misconstrued by decision makers, leading them to inaccurate conclusions about the risks associated with climate impacts. Three cases will be discussed: 1) Issues of spatial scale in interpreting climate observations: Local climate observations may contradict summary statements about the effects of climate change on larger regional or global spatial scales. Effectively addressing these differences often requires communicators to understand local and regional climate drivers, and the distinction between a 'signal' associated with climate change and local climate 'noise.' Hydrological statistics in Missouri and California are shown to illustrate this case. 2) Issues of complexity related to extreme events: Climate change is typically invoked following a wide range of damaging meteorological events (e.g., heat waves, landfalling hurricanes, tornadoes), regardless of the strength of the relationship between anthropogenic climate change and the frequency or severity of that type of event. Examples are drawn from media coverage of several recent events, contrasting useful and potentially confusing word choices and frames. 3) Issues revolving around climate sensitivity: The so-called 'pause' or 'hiatus' in global warming has reverberated strongly through political and business discussions of climate change. Addressing the recent slowdown in warming yields an important opportunity to raise climate literacy in these communities. Attempts to use recent observations as a wedge between climate 'believers' and 'deniers' is likely to be counterproductive. Examples are drawn from Congressional testimony and media stories. All three cases illustrate ways that decision

  17. Preparing for climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holdgate, M

    1989-01-01

    There is a distinct probability that humankind is changing the climate and at the same time raising the sea level of the world. The most plausible projections we have now suggest a rise in mean world temperature of between 1 degree Celsius and 2 degrees Celsius by 2030--just 40 years hence. This is a bigger change in a smaller period than we know of in the experience of the earth's ecosystems and human societies. It implies that by 2030 the earth will be warmer than at any time in the past 120,000 years. In the same period, we are likely to see a rise of 15-30 centimeters in sea level, partly due to the melting of mountain glaciers and partly to the expansion of the warmer seas. This may not seem much--but it comes on top of the 12-centimeter rise in the past century and we should recall that over 1/2 the world's population lives in zones on or near coasts. A quarter meter rise in sea level could have drastic consequences for countries like the Maldives or the Netherlands, where much of the land lies below the 2-meter contour. The cause of climate change is known as the 'greenhouse effect'. Greenhouse glass has the property that it is transparent to radiation coming in from the sun, but holds back radiation to space from the warmed surfaces inside the greenhouse. Certain gases affect the atmosphere in the same way. There are 5 'greenhouse gases' and we have been roofing ourselves with them all: carbon dioxide concentrations in the atmosphere have increased 25% above preindustrial levels and are likely to double within a century, due to tropical forest clearance and especially to the burning of increasing quantities of coal and other fossil fuels; methane concentrations are now twice their preindustrial levels as a result of releases from agriculture; nitrous oxide has increased due to land clearance for agriculture, use of fertilizers, and fossil fuel combustion; ozone levels near the earth's surface have increased due mainly to pollution from motor vehicles; and

  18. Preparing for climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holdgate, M

    1989-01-01

    There is a distinct probability that humankind is changing the climate and at the same time raising the sea level of the world. The most plausible projections we have now suggest a rise in mean world temperature of between 1 degree Celsius and 2 degrees Celsius by 2030--just 40 years hence. This is a bigger change in a smaller period than we know of in the experience of the earth's ecosystems and human societies. It implies that by 2030 the earth will be warmer than at any time in the past 120,000 years. In the same period, we are likely to see a rise of 15-30 centimeters in sea level, partly due to the melting of mountain glaciers and partly to the expansion of the warmer seas. This may not seem much--but it comes on top of the 12-centimeter rise in the past century and we should recall that over 1/2 the world's population lives in zones on or near coasts. A quarter meter rise in sea level could have drastic consequences for countries like the Maldives or the Netherlands, where much of the land lies below the 2-meter contour. The cause of climate change is known as the 'greenhouse effect'. Greenhouse glass has the property that it is transparent to radiation coming in from the sun, but holds back radiation to space from the warmed surfaces inside the greenhouse. Certain gases affect the atmosphere in the same way. There are 5 'greenhouse gases' and we have been roofing ourselves with them all: carbon dioxide concentrations in the atmosphere have increased 25% above preindustrial levels and are likely to double within a century, due to tropical forest clearance and especially to the burning of increasing quantities of coal and other fossil fuels; methane concentrations are now twice their preindustrial levels as a result of releases from agriculture; nitrous oxide has increased due to land clearance for agriculture, use of fertilizers, and fossil fuel combustion; ozone levels near the earth's surface have increased due mainly to pollution from motor vehicles; and

  19. Climate Change Mitigation A Balanced Approach to Climate Change

    CERN Document Server

    2012-01-01

    This book provides a fresh and innovative perspective on climate change policy. By emphasizing the multiple facets of climate policy, from mitigation to adaptation, from technological innovation and diffusion to governance issues, it contains a comprehensive overview of the economic and policy dimensions of the climate problem. The keyword of the book is balance. The book clarifies that climate change cannot be controlled by sacrificing economic growth and many other urgent global issues. At the same time, action to control climate change cannot be delayed, even though gradually implemented. Therefore, on the one hand climate policy becomes pervasive and affects all dimensions of international policy. On the other hand, climate policy cannot be too ambitious: a balanced approach between mitigation and adaptation, between economic growth and resource management, between short term development efforts and long term innovation investments, should be adopted. I recommend its reading. Carlo Carraro, President, Ca�...

  20. An Objective Approach to Select Climate Scenarios when Projecting Species Distribution under Climate Change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casajus, Nicolas; Périé, Catherine; Logan, Travis; Lambert, Marie-Claude; de Blois, Sylvie; Berteaux, Dominique

    2016-01-01

    An impressive number of new climate change scenarios have recently become available to assess the ecological impacts of climate change. Among these impacts, shifts in species range analyzed with species distribution models are the most widely studied. Whereas it is widely recognized that the uncertainty in future climatic conditions must be taken into account in impact studies, many assessments of species range shifts still rely on just a few climate change scenarios, often selected arbitrarily. We describe a method to select objectively a subset of climate change scenarios among a large ensemble of available ones. Our k-means clustering approach reduces the number of climate change scenarios needed to project species distributions, while retaining the coverage of uncertainty in future climate conditions. We first show, for three biologically-relevant climatic variables, that a reduced number of six climate change scenarios generates average climatic conditions very close to those obtained from a set of 27 scenarios available before reduction. A case study on potential gains and losses of habitat by three northeastern American tree species shows that potential future species distributions projected from the selected six climate change scenarios are very similar to those obtained from the full set of 27, although with some spatial discrepancies at the edges of species distributions. In contrast, projections based on just a few climate models vary strongly according to the initial choice of climate models. We give clear guidance on how to reduce the number of climate change scenarios while retaining the central tendencies and coverage of uncertainty in future climatic conditions. This should be particularly useful during future climate change impact studies as more than twice as many climate models were reported in the fifth assessment report of IPCC compared to the previous one.

  1. Bias and robustness of uncertainty components estimates in transient climate projections

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hingray, Benoit; Blanchet, Juliette; Jean-Philippe, Vidal

    2016-04-01

    A critical issue in climate change studies is the estimation of uncertainties in projections along with the contribution of the different uncertainty sources, including scenario uncertainty, the different components of model uncertainty and internal variability. Quantifying the different uncertainty sources faces actually different problems. For instance and for the sake of simplicity, an estimate of model uncertainty is classically obtained from the empirical variance of the climate responses obtained for the different modeling chains. These estimates are however biased. Another difficulty arises from the limited number of members that are classically available for most modeling chains. In this case, the climate response of one given chain and the effect of its internal variability may be actually difficult if not impossible to separate. The estimate of scenario uncertainty, model uncertainty and internal variability components are thus likely to be not really robust. We explore the importance of the bias and the robustness of the estimates for two classical Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) approaches: a Single Time approach (STANOVA), based on the only data available for the considered projection lead time and a time series based approach (QEANOVA), which assumes quasi-ergodicity of climate outputs over the whole available climate simulation period (Hingray and Saïd, 2014). We explore both issues for a simple but classical configuration where uncertainties in projections are composed of two single sources: model uncertainty and internal climate variability. The bias in model uncertainty estimates is explored from theoretical expressions of unbiased estimators developed for both ANOVA approaches. The robustness of uncertainty estimates is explored for multiple synthetic ensembles of time series projections generated with MonteCarlo simulations. For both ANOVA approaches, when the empirical variance of climate responses is used to estimate model uncertainty, the bias

  2. Urban Growth and Climate Change

    OpenAIRE

    Kahn, Matthew E.

    2008-01-01

    Between 1950 and 2030, the share of the world's population that lives in cities is predicted to grow from 30% to 60%. This urbanization has consequences for the likelihood of climate change and for the social costs that climate change will impose on the world's quality of life. This paper examines how urbanization affects greenhouse gas production, and it studies how urbanites in the developed and developing world will adapt to the challenges posed by climate change.

  3. Global warming and climate change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A panel discussion was held to discuss climate change. Six panelists made presentations that summarized ozone depletion and climate change, discussed global responses, argued against the conventional scientific and policy dogmas concerning climate change, examined the effects of ultraviolet radiation on phytoplankton, examined the effects of carbon taxes on Canadian industry and its emissions, and examined the political and strategic aspects of global warming. A question session followed the presentations. Separate abstracts have been prepared for the six presentations

  4. Adapting agriculture to climate change

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Howden, S.M.; Soussana, J.F.; Tubiello, F.N.; Chhetri, N.; Dunlop, M.; Meinke, H.B.

    2007-01-01

    The strong trends in climate change already evident, the likelihood of further changes occurring, and the increasing scale of potential climate impacts give urgency to addressing agricultural adaptation more coherently. There are many potential adaptation options available for marginal change of exi

  5. Evaluating the uncertainty of predicting future climate time series at the hourly time scale

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caporali, E.; Fatichi, S.; Ivanov, V. Y.

    2011-12-01

    A stochastic downscaling methodology is developed to generate hourly, point-scale time series for several meteorological variables, such as precipitation, cloud cover, shortwave radiation, air temperature, relative humidity, wind speed, and atmospheric pressure. The methodology uses multi-model General Circulation Model (GCM) realizations and an hourly weather generator, AWE-GEN. Probabilistic descriptions of factors of change (a measure of climate change with respect to historic conditions) are computed for several climate statistics and different aggregation times using a Bayesian approach that weights the individual GCM contributions. The Monte Carlo method is applied to sample the factors of change from their respective distributions thereby permitting the generation of time series in an ensemble fashion, which reflects the uncertainty of climate projections of future as well as the uncertainty of the downscaling procedure. Applications of the methodology and probabilistic expressions of certainty in reproducing future climates for the periods, 2000 - 2009, 2046 - 2065 and 2081 - 2100, using the 1962 - 1992 period as the baseline, are discussed for the location of Firenze (Italy). The climate predictions for the period of 2000 - 2009 are tested against observations permitting to assess the reliability and uncertainties of the methodology in reproducing statistics of meteorological variables at different time scales.

  6. Effects of climate model interdependency on the uncertainty quantification of extreme rainfall projections

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sunyer Pinya, Maria Antonia; Madsen, H.; Rosbjerg, Dan;

    Climate Models (RCMs) and General Circulation Models (GCMs). These multi-model ensembles provide the information needed to estimate probabilistic climate change projections. Several probabilistic methods have been suggested. One common assumption in most of these methods is that the climate models...... are independent. The effects of this assumption on the uncertainty quantification of extreme rainfall projections are addressed in this study. First, the interdependency of the 95% quantile of wet days in the ENSEMBLES RCMs is estimated. For this statistic and the region studied, the RCMs cannot be assumed...

  7. Climate change and shareholder value

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    During 2005, the Carbon Trust worked with Cairneagle Associates to develop a methodology for analysing shareholder value at risk from climate change. The model developed offers a robust, replicable, top-down approach to analysing such value at risk. In addition to a company's own energy linked ('direct' and electricity linked 'indirect') carbon emissions, it looks further along the value chain and considers broader potential risk. In calculating the financial impact, the analysis quantifies the potential impact on profits, using the shape of the business in 2004, but applying a potential 2013 emissions regulatory regime. 2013 was chosen as the first year after the end of the 2008-2012 Kyoto compliance period (which also equates to Phase Two in the EU Emissions Trading Scheme). A major uncertainty is to what extent countries not currently regulated by the Kyoto Protocol (particularly the USA, India and China) will be brought into committed emission reduction targets from 2013. 2013 therefore represents the earliest year under this uncertain, but likely tougher, regulatory regime. However, although this report focuses on 2013, it needs to be recognised that, for many sectors, financial impacts will be seen significantly before this time. Ten 'case study companies' have been studied, from a range of sectors. In some cases, the 'case study company' analysed is strictly linked to a single company within that sector. In others, just a single corporate division has been reviewed, and in others yet again, characteristics from several companies have been combined to produce a more representative example. In order to enable analysis on a strictly like-for-like basis, the research has been based entirely upon public sources of information. This analysis illustrates what a determined shareholder (or other onlooker) could derive about value at risk from climate change, based upon what companies disclose today. A summary of the analysis for each sector case study is given, with

  8. Man-made climate change: an overview

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Holopainen, E. [Helsinki Univ. (Finland). Dept. of Meteorology

    1995-12-31

    The first major man-made environmental problem was the soil acidification, caused primarily by the massive industrial emissions of sulphur dioxide. Then came the problem of ozone depletion, caused by the emissions of man-made halocarbons. More recently, the possibility of man-made climate change has received a lot of attention. These three man-made problems are interconnected in fundamental ways and require for their solution interdisciplinary and international approach. Narrowing of the scientific uncertainties connected with the problems mentioned above can be expected through international `Global Change` programmes such as the World Climate Research Programme (WCRP) and the International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme (IGBP). Periodic assessments of the type produced by the IPCC will clearly be needed. Also in the future such assessments should form the scientific basis for international negotiations and conventions on the climate change issue

  9. Climate change - a natural hazard

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kininmonth, William

    2003-07-01

    The impacts of weather and climate extremes (floods, storms, drought, etc) have historically set back development and will continue to do so into the future, especially in developing countries. It is essential to understand how future climate change will be manifest as weather and climate extremes in order to implement policies of sustainable development. The purpose of this article is to demonstrate that natural processes have caused the climate to change and it is unlikely that human influences will dominate the natural processes. Any suggestion that implementation of the Kyoto Protocol will avoid future infrastructure damage, environmental degradation and loss of life from weather and climate extremes is a grand delusion. (Author)

  10. Climate@Home: Crowdsourcing Climate Change Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, C.; Yang, C.; Li, J.; Sun, M.; Bambacus, M.

    2011-12-01

    Climate change deeply impacts human wellbeing. Significant amounts of resources have been invested in building super-computers that are capable of running advanced climate models, which help scientists understand climate change mechanisms, and predict its trend. Although climate change influences all human beings, the general public is largely excluded from the research. On the other hand, scientists are eagerly seeking communication mediums for effectively enlightening the public on climate change and its consequences. The Climate@Home project is devoted to connect the two ends with an innovative solution: crowdsourcing climate computing to the general public by harvesting volunteered computing resources from the participants. A distributed web-based computing platform will be built to support climate computing, and the general public can 'plug-in' their personal computers to participate in the research. People contribute the spare computing power of their computers to run a computer model, which is used by scientists to predict climate change. Traditionally, only super-computers could handle such a large computing processing load. By orchestrating massive amounts of personal computers to perform atomized data processing tasks, investments on new super-computers, energy consumed by super-computers, and carbon release from super-computers are reduced. Meanwhile, the platform forms a social network of climate researchers and the general public, which may be leveraged to raise climate awareness among the participants. A portal is to be built as the gateway to the climate@home project. Three types of roles and the corresponding functionalities are designed and supported. The end users include the citizen participants, climate scientists, and project managers. Citizen participants connect their computing resources to the platform by downloading and installing a computing engine on their personal computers. Computer climate models are defined at the server side. Climate

  11. Scaling Climate Change Communication for Behavior Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodriguez, V. C.; Lappé, M.; Flora, J. A.; Ardoin, N. M.; Robinson, T. N.

    2014-12-01

    Ultimately, effective climate change communication results in a change in behavior, whether the change is individual, household or collective actions within communities. We describe two efforts to promote climate-friendly behavior via climate communication and behavior change theory. Importantly these efforts are designed to scale climate communication principles focused on behavior change rather than soley emphasizing climate knowledge or attitudes. Both cases are embedded in rigorous evaluations (randomized controlled trial and quasi-experimental) of primary and secondary outcomes as well as supplementary analyses that have implications for program refinement and program scaling. In the first case, the Girl Scouts "Girls Learning Environment and Energy" (GLEE) trial is scaling the program via a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) for Troop Leaders to teach the effective home electricity and food and transportation energy reduction programs. The second case, the Alliance for Climate Education (ACE) Assembly Program, is advancing the already-scaled assembly program by using communication principles to further engage youth and their families and communities (school and local communities) in individual and collective actions. Scaling of each program uses online learning platforms, social media and "behavior practice" videos, mastery practice exercises, virtual feedback and virtual social engagement to advance climate-friendly behavior change. All of these communication practices aim to simulate and advance in-person train-the-trainers technologies.As part of this presentation we outline scaling principles derived from these two climate change communication and behavior change programs.

  12. Uncertainty and sensitivity analysis of the retrieved essential climate variables from remotely sensed observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Djepa, Vera; Badii, Atta

    2016-04-01

    The sensitivity of weather and climate system to sea ice thickness (SIT), Sea Ice Draft (SID) and Snow Depth (SD) in the Arctic is recognized from various studies. Decrease in SIT will affect atmospheric circulation, temperature, precipitation and wind speed in the Arctic and beyond. Ice thermodynamics and dynamic properties depend strongly on sea Ice Density (ID) and SD. SIT, SID, ID and SD are sensitive to environmental changes in the Polar region and impact the climate system. For accurate forecast of climate change, sea ice mass balance, ocean circulation and sea- atmosphere interactions it is required to have long term records of SIT, SID, SD and ID with errors and uncertainty analyses. The SID, SIT, ID and freeboard (F) have been retrieved from Radar Altimeter (RA) (on board ENVISAT) and IceBridge Laser Altimeter (LA) and validated, using over 10 years -collocated observations of SID and SD in the Arctic, provided from the European Space Agency (ESA CCI sea ice ECV project). Improved algorithms to retrieve SIT from LA and RA have been derived, applying statistical analysis. The snow depth is obtained from AMSR-E/Aqua and NASA IceBridge Snow Depth radar. The sea ice properties of pancake ice have been retrieved from ENVISAT/Synthetic Aperture Radar (ASAR). The uncertainties of the retrieved climate variables have been analysed and the impact of snow depth and sea ice density on retrieved SIT has been estimated. The sensitivity analysis illustrates the impact of uncertainties of input climate variables (ID and SD) on accuracy of the retrieved output variables (SIT and SID). The developed methodology of uncertainty and sensitivity analysis is essential for assessment of the impact of environmental variables on climate change and better understanding of the relationship between input and output variables. The uncertainty analysis quantifies the uncertainties of the model results and the sensitivity analysis evaluates the contribution of each input variable to

  13. Climate Twins - a tool to explore future climate impacts by assessing real world conditions: Exploration principles, underlying data, similarity conditions and uncertainty ranges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loibl, Wolfgang; Peters-Anders, Jan; Züger, Johann

    2010-05-01

    To achieve public awareness and thorough understanding about expected climate changes and their future implications, ways have to be found to communicate model outputs to the public in a scientifically sound and easily understandable way. The newly developed Climate Twins tool tries to fulfil these requirements via an intuitively usable web application, which compares spatial patterns of current climate with future climate patterns, derived from regional climate model results. To get a picture of the implications of future climate in an area of interest, users may click on a certain location within an interactive map with underlying future climate information. A second map depicts the matching Climate Twin areas according to current climate conditions. In this way scientific output can be communicated to the public which allows for experiencing climate change through comparison with well-known real world conditions. To identify climatic coincidence seems to be a simple exercise, but the accuracy and applicability of the similarity identification depends very much on the selection of climate indicators, similarity conditions and uncertainty ranges. Too many indicators representing various climate characteristics and too narrow uncertainty ranges will judge little or no area as regions with similar climate, while too little indicators and too wide uncertainty ranges will address too large regions as those with similar climate which may not be correct. Similarity cannot be just explored by comparing mean values or by calculating correlation coefficients. As climate change triggers an alteration of various indicators, like maxima, minima, variation magnitude, frequency of extreme events etc., the identification of appropriate similarity conditions is a crucial question to be solved. For Climate Twins identification, it is necessary to find a right balance of indicators, similarity conditions and uncertainty ranges, unless the results will be too vague conducting a

  14. Lay representations on climate change

    OpenAIRE

    Cabecinhas, Rosa; Lázaro, Alexandra; Carvalho, Anabela

    2006-01-01

    Lay representations on climate change were mapped via the free-word association method in two pilot studies. Participants were asked to generate words associated to “the big problems faced by humankind nowadays” (1st study) and to “climate change” (2nd study). Climate change was not spontaneously evoked by the participants in the first study: pollution was among the top 10 problems, but references to other environmental issues were very low. In the second study, climate change was consid...

  15. Schneider lecture: From climate change impacts to climate change risks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Field, C. B.

    2014-12-01

    Steve Schneider was a strong proponent of considering the entire range of possible climate-change outcomes. He wrote and spoke frequently about the importance of low probability/high consequence outcomes as well as most likely outcomes. He worked tirelessly on communicating the risks from overlapping stressors. Technical and conceptual issues have made it difficult for Steve's vision to reach maturity in mainstream climate-change research, but the picture is changing rapidly. The concept of climate-change risk, considering both probability and consequence, is central to the recently completed IPCC Fifth Assessment Report, and the concept frames much of the discussion about future research agendas. Framing climate change as a challenge in managing risks is important for five core reasons. First, conceptualizing the issue as being about probabilities builds a bridge between current climate variability and future climate change. Second, a formulation based on risks highlights the fact that climate impacts occur primarily in extremes. For historical variability and future impacts, the real concern is the conditions under which things break and systems fail, namely, in the extremes. Third, framing the challenge as one of managing risks puts a strong emphasis on exploring the full range of possible outcomes, including low-probability, high/consequence outcomes. Fourth, explaining climate change as a problem in managing risks links climate change to a wide range of sophisticated risk management tools and strategies that underpin much of modern society. Fifth, the concept of climate change as a challenge in managing risks helps cement the understanding that climate change is a threat multiplier, adding new dimensions and complexity to existing and emerging problems. Framing climate change as a challenge in managing risks creates an important but difficult agenda for research. The emphasis needs to shift from most likely outcomes to most risky outcomes, considering the full

  16. To define climate politics: role of uncertainties and lessons of economic modelling

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    After an overview of the state-of-the-art of scientific knowledge on the climate change phenomenon considered according to its three components (climates, damages and socio-economy) and a focus on the nature and extent of scientific uncertainties (a typology of these is presented), this research presents and analyses the results of technico-economic models dealing with the Kyoto protocol's implementation costs. It aims at determining economical stakes related to action, at looking for the most efficient intervention ways. It analyses the results of bottom-up and top-down models, tries to identify robustness and uncertainties by using the previously introduced uncertainty typology. It presents and analyses long term scenarios, and highlights the role of energy systems in the determination of emissions. Finally, the author presents various categories of instruments which policy makers can use to implement a mitigation policy

  17. The International Climate Change Regime

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamin, Farhana; Depledge, Joanna

    2005-01-01

    Aimed at the increasing number of policy-makers, stakeholders, researchers, and other professionals working on climate change, this volume presents a detailed description and analysis of the international regime established in 1992 to combat the threat of global climate change. It provides a comprehensive accessible guide to a high-profile area of international law and politics, covering not only the obligations and rights of countries, but ongoing climate negotiations as well.

  18. Ground water and climate change

    OpenAIRE

    Taylor, Richard G; Scanlon, Bridget; Döll, Petra; Rodell, Matt; van Beek, Rens; Wada, Yoshihide; Longuevergne, Laurent; Leblanc, Marc; Famiglietti, James S.; Edmunds, Mike; Konikow, Leonard; Green, Timothy R.; Chen, Jianyao; Taniguchi, Makoto; Bierkens, Marc F P

    2013-01-01

    As the world’s largest distributed store of fresh water, ground water plays a central part in sustaining ecosystems and enabling human adaptation to climate variability and change. The strategic importance of ground water for global water and food security will probably intensify under climate change as more frequent and intense climate extremes (droughts and floods) increase variability in precipitation, soil moisture and surface water. Here we critically review recent research assessing the...

  19. Climate variability and change

    CERN Document Server

    Grassl, H

    1998-01-01

    Many factors influence climate. The present knowledge concerning the climate relevance of earth orbital parameters, solar luminosity, volcanoes, internal interactions, and human activities will be reported as well as the vulnerability of emission scenarios for given stabilization goals for greenhouse gas concentrations and the main points of the Kyoto Protocol

  20. Ground Water and Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, Richard G.; Scanlon, Bridget; Doell, Petra; Rodell, Matt; van Beek, Rens; Wada, Yoshihide; Longuevergne, Laurent; Leblanc, Marc; Famiglietti, James S.; Edmunds, Mike; Konikow, Leonard; Green, Timothy R.; Chen, Jianyao; Taniguchi, Makoto; Bierkens, Marc F. P.; MacDonald, Alan; Fan, Ying; Maxwell, Reed M.; Yechieli, Yossi; Gurdak, Jason J.; Allen, Diana M.; Shamsudduha, Mohammad; Hiscock, Kevin; Yeh, Pat J. -F; Holman, Ian; Treidel, Holger

    2013-01-01

    As the world's largest distributed store of fresh water, ground water plays a central part in sustaining ecosystems and enabling human adaptation to climate variability and change. The strategic importance of ground water for global water and food security will probably intensify under climate change as more frequent and intense climate extremes (droughts and floods) increase variability in precipitation, soil moisture and surface water. Here we critically review recent research assessing the impacts of climate on ground water through natural and human-induced processes as well as through groundwater-driven feedbacks on the climate system. Furthermore, we examine the possible opportunities and challenges of using and sustaining groundwater resources in climate adaptation strategies, and highlight the lack of groundwater observations, which, at present, limits our understanding of the dynamic relationship between ground water and climate.

  1. Nuclear Energy and Climate Change

    OpenAIRE

    Méritet, Sophie; Zaleski, Pierre

    2009-01-01

    The paper will discuss the possibilities of the development of nuclear energy in the world in the midterm and long term. It will correlate the prospects with the emissions of CO2 and the effects on climate change. In particular it will discuss the problems nuclear energy face to make a large contribution of climate change issue.

  2. Climate change challenges for SEA

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larsen, Sanne Vammen

    This paper takes a theoretical perspective on the challenges that climate changes pose for SEA. The theoretical framework used is the sociologist Ulrich Beck’s theory of risk society and the aspects that characterise this society. Climate change is viewed as a risk, and the theory is used to derive...

  3. Teaching about Global Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heffron, Susan Gallagher; Valmond, Kharra

    2011-01-01

    Students are exposed to many different media reports about global climate change. Movies such as "The Day After Tomorrow" and "Ice Age" are examples of instances when movie producers have sought to capture the attention of audiences by augmenting the challenges that climate change poses. Students may receive information from a wide range of media…

  4. Congress Assesses Climate Change Paleodata

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bierly, Eugene W.

    2006-08-01

    The `hockey stick' graph of surfacetemperature change overthe past millennium and implicationsfor climate change assessments wasthe subject of two hearings held by the U.S.House of Representatives Energy and CommerceSubcommittee on Oversight andInvestigations, on 19 and 27 July. These hearingsmarked only the second time that thecommittee has discussed climate issuessince George W. Bush became president.

  5. Dune erosion under climate change

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Winter, R.C.

    2014-01-01

    This PhD-thesis investigated the effect of future climate change on dune erosion in the Netherlands. At present, dune erosion occurs under a combination of large storm surge and high waves, which are both generated by a storm event. Therefore to investigate the affect of future climate change on dun

  6. Climate Change, Growth, and Poverty

    OpenAIRE

    Hull, Katy

    2008-01-01

    Equity emerged as the principal theme during the Poverty Reduction and Economic Management (PREM) week session 'climate change, growth and poverty,' where presenters addressed the distributional consequences of climate change, as well as countries' unequal capacity to cope with the twin challenges of adaptation and mitigation. They highlighted actions to strengthen the global knowledge bas...

  7. Uncertainty in flow and sediment projections due to future climate scenarios for the 3S Rivers in the Mekong Basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shrestha, Bikesh; Cochrane, Thomas A.; Caruso, Brian S.; Arias, Mauricio E.; Piman, Thanapon

    2016-09-01

    Reliable projections of discharge and sediment are essential for future water and sediment management plans under climate change, but these are subject to numerous uncertainties. This study assessed the uncertainty in flow and sediment projections using the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) associated with three Global Climate Models (GCMs), three Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs) and three model parameter (MP) sets for the 3S Rivers in the Mekong River Basin. The uncertainty was analyzed for the short term future (2021-2040 or 2030s) and long term future (2051-2070 or 2060s) time horizons. Results show that dominant sources of uncertainty in flow and sediment constituents vary spatially across the 3S basin. For peak flow, peak sediment, and wet seasonal flows projection, the greatest uncertainty sources also vary with time horizon. For 95% low flows and for seasonal and annual flow projections, GCM and MP were the major sources of uncertainty, whereas RCPs had less of an effect. The uncertainty due to RCPs is large for annual sediment load projections. While model parameterization is the major source of uncertainty in the short term (2030s), GCMs and RCPs are the major contributors to uncertainty in flow and sediment projections in the longer term (2060s). Overall, the uncertainty in sediment load projections is larger than the uncertainty in flow projections. In general, our results suggest the need to investigate the major contributing sources of uncertainty in large basins temporally and at different scales, as this can have major consequences for water and sediment management decisions. Further, since model parameterization uncertainty can play a significant role for flow and sediment projections, there is a need to incorporate hydrological model parameter uncertainty in climate change studies and efforts to reduce the parameter uncertainty as much as possible should be considered through a careful calibration and validation process.

  8. Food security under climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hertel, Thomas W.

    2016-01-01

    Using food prices to assess climate change impacts on food security is misleading. Differential impacts on income require a broader measure of household well-being, such as changes in absolute poverty.

  9. Comparing snow models under current and future climates: Uncertainties and implications for hydrological impact studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Troin, Magali; Poulin, Annie; Baraer, Michel; Brissette, François

    2016-09-01

    Projected climate change effects on snow hydrology are investigated for the 2041-2060 horizon following the SRES A2 emissions scenario over three snowmelt-dominated catchments in Quebec, Canada. A 16-member ensemble of eight snow models (SM) simulations, based on the high-resolution Canadian Regional Climate Model (CRCM-15 km) simulations driven by two realizations of the Canadian Global Climate Model (CGCM3), is established per catchment. This study aims to compare a range of SMs in their ability at simulating snow processes under current climate, and to evaluate how they affect the assessment of the climate change-induced snow impacts at the catchment scale. The variability of snowpack response caused by the use of different models within two different SM approaches (degree-day (DD) versus mixed degree-day/energy balance (DD/EB)) is also evaluated, as well as the uncertainty of natural climate variability. The simulations cover 1961-1990 in the present period and 2041-2060 in the future period. There is a general convergence in the ensemble spread of the climate change signals on snow water equivalent at the catchment scale, with an earlier peak and a decreased magnitude in all basins. The results of four snow indicators show that most of the uncertainty arises from natural climate variability (inter-member variability of the CRCM) followed by the snow model. Both the DD and DD/EB models provide comparable assessments of the impacts of climate change on snow hydrology at the catchment scale.

  10. Malaria ecology and climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCord, G. C.

    2016-05-01

    Understanding the costs that climate change will exact on society is crucial to devising an appropriate policy response. One of the channels through while climate change will affect human society is through vector-borne diseases whose epidemiology is conditioned by ambient ecology. This paper introduces the literature on malaria, its cost on society, and the consequences of climate change to the physics community in hopes of inspiring synergistic research in the area of climate change and health. It then demonstrates the use of one ecological indicator of malaria suitability to provide an order-of-magnitude assessment of how climate change might affect the malaria burden. The average of Global Circulation Model end-of-century predictions implies a 47% average increase in the basic reproduction number of the disease in today's malarious areas, significantly complicating malaria elimination efforts.

  11. Climate change and marine vertebrates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sydeman, William J; Poloczanska, Elvira; Reed, Thomas E; Thompson, Sarah Ann

    2015-11-13

    Climate change impacts on vertebrates have consequences for marine ecosystem structures and services. We review marine fish, mammal, turtle, and seabird responses to climate change and discuss their potential for adaptation. Direct and indirect responses are demonstrated from every ocean. Because of variation in research foci, observed responses differ among taxonomic groups (redistributions for fish, phenology for seabirds). Mechanisms of change are (i) direct physiological responses and (ii) climate-mediated predator-prey interactions. Regional-scale variation in climate-demographic functions makes range-wide population dynamics challenging to predict. The nexus of metabolism relative to ecosystem productivity and food webs appears key to predicting future effects on marine vertebrates. Integration of climate, oceanographic, ecosystem, and population models that incorporate evolutionary processes is needed to prioritize the climate-related conservation needs for these species. PMID:26564847

  12. Climate Change and Floodplain Management in the United States

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Olsen, J.R. [Institute for Water Resources, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, CEIWR-PD, Casey Building, 7701 Telegraph Road, Alexandria, VA 22315 (United States)

    2006-06-15

    Federal agencies use flood frequency estimates to delineate flood risk, manage the National Flood Insurance Program, and ensure that Federal programs are economically efficient. The assumption behind traditional flood risk analysis is that climate is stationary, but anthropogenic climate change and better knowledge of interdecadal climate variability challenge the validity of the assumption. This paper reviews several alternative statistical models for flood risk estimation that do not assume climate stationarity. Some models require subjective judgement or presuppose an understanding of the causes of the underlying non-stationarity, which is problematic given our current knowledge of the interaction of climate and floods. Although currently out of favor, hydrometeorological models have been used for engineering design as alternatives to statistical models and could be adapted to different climate conditions. Floodplain managers should recognize the potentially greater uncertainty in flood risk estimation due to climate change and variability and try to incorporate the uncertainties into floodplain management decision-making and regulation.

  13. Learning from integrated assessment of climate change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The objective of integrated assessment of climate change is to put available knowledge together in order to evaluate what has been learned, policy implications, and research needs. This paper summarizes insights gained from five years of integrated assessment activity at Carnegie Mellon. After an introduction, Section 2 asks; who are the climate decision makers? It is concluded that they are a diffuse and often divergent group spread all over the world whose decisions are primarily driven by local non-climate considerations. Insights are illustrated with results from the ICAM-2 model. Section 3 asks: what is the climate problem? In addition to the conventional answer, it is noted that in a democracy the problem is whatever voters and their elected representatives think it is. Results from studies of public understanding are reported. Several other specific issues that define the problem, including the treatment of aerosols and alternative indices for comparing greenhouse gases are discussed. Section 4 discusses studies of climate impacts, focusing on coastal zones, the terrestrial biosphere and human health. Particular attention is placed on the roles of adaptation, value change, and technological innovation. In Section 5 selected policy issues are discussed. It is concluded by noting that equity has received too little attention in past work. It is argued that many conventional tools for policy analysis are not adequate to deal with climate problems. Values that change, and mixed levels of uncertainty, pose particularly important challenges for the future. 90 refs., 4 figs., 4 tabs

  14. Climate variability and change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    When Australia's climate should not be definite barrier to the population reaching 30 million by 2050, it is recognised that our climate has limited the development of the nation over the past 200 years. Indeed in 1911, based on a comparison of the climate and development between the US and Australia. Griffith Taylor predicted that Australia's population would be 19 million at the end of the 20th century, which is a pretty good 90-year forecast. The climate constraint is not only due to much of the country being semi-arid with an annual rainfall below 400 millimetres, but also due to the large year-to-year variability of rainfall across the country

  15. Climate change experiments in Hamburg

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gubasch, U. [DKRZ, Hamburg (Germany)

    1995-12-31

    Nowadays the anthropogenic climate change is been simulated world wide with a fair number of coupled ocean atmosphere general circulation models (IPCC, 1995). Typical model problems do not only blur the estimates of the anthropogenic climate change, but they also cause errors in the estimates of the natural variability. An accurate representation of the natural variability of the climate system is, however, essential for the detection of the anthropogenic climate change. All model simulations world wide show, even though they differ considerably in their technical details and the experimental setup and the forcing data, similar amplitudes and pattern of the predicted climate change. In the model world it is already at the beginning of the next century possible to detect the anthropogenic climate change in the global mean. If the model results are applied in a `fingerprint analysis`, then it is possible to prove that the climate change during the last 30 years is with a significance of 95 % larger than any other climate change during the last 100 years. The experiments performed in Hamburg show that the experimental conditions are of great importance for the estimate of the future climate. The usual starting point of most of the simulations with present day conditions (1980-1990) is too late, because then a considerable part of the warming since the beginning of the industrialization (ca. 1750) has been neglected. Furthermore it has only recently become clear that the sulphat-aerosols play an important role in the present day climate and in the future climate. The effect of the sulphat aerosols has first been simulated in a number of equilibrium simulations with mixed layer models, but nowadays with globally coupled ocean-atmosphere circulation models

  16. Climate change or variable weather

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Baron, Nina; Kjerulf Petersen, Lars

    2015-01-01

    Climate scenarios predict that an effect of climate change will be more areas at risk of extensive flooding. This article builds on a qualitative case study of homeowners in the flood-prone area of Lolland in Denmark and uses the theories of Tim Ingold and Bruno Latour to rethink the way we...... understand homeowners’ perception of climate change and local flood risk. Ingold argues that those perceptions are shaped by people’s experiences with and connections to their local landscape. People experience the local variability of the weather, and not global climate change as presented in statistical...... data and models. This influences the way they understand the future risks of climate change. Concurrently, with the theory of Latour, we can understand how those experiences with the local landscape are mediated by the existing water-managing technologies such as pumps and dikes. These technologies...

  17. Modelling land surface fluxes of CO2 in response to climate change and nitrogen deposition

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Kristina; Ambelas Skjøth, Carsten; Geels, Camilla;

    Climate change, land use variations, and impacts of atmospheric nitrogen (N) deposition represent uncertainties for the prediction of future greenhouse gas exchange between land surfaces and the atmosphere as the mechanisms describing nutritional effects are not well developed in climate...... climate feedback mechanisms of CO2 between changes in management, land use practise, and climate change....

  18. Uncertainty in runoff based on Global Climate Model precipitation and temperature data – Part 1: Assessment of Global Climate Models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. A. McMahon

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Two key sources of uncertainty in projections of future runoff for climate change impact assessments are uncertainty between Global Climate Models (GCMs and within a GCM. Uncertainty between GCM projections of future climate can be assessed through analysis of runs of a given scenario from a wide range of GCMs. Within GCM uncertainty is the variability in GCM output that occurs when running a scenario multiple times but each run has slightly different, but equally plausible, initial conditions. The objective of this, the first of two complementary papers, is to reduce between-GCM uncertainty by identifying and removing poorly performing GCMs prior to the analysis presented in the second paper. Here we assess how well 46 runs from 22 Coupled Model Intercomparison Project phase 3 (CMIP3 GCMs are able to reproduce observed precipitation and temperature climatological statistics. The performance of each GCM in reproducing these statistics was ranked and better performing GCMs identified for later analyses. Observed global land surface precipitation and temperature data were drawn from the CRU 3.10 gridded dataset and re-sampled to the resolution of each GCM for comparison. Observed and GCM based estimates of mean and standard deviation of annual precipitation, mean annual temperature, mean monthly precipitation and temperature and Köppen climate type were compared. The main metrics for assessing GCM performance were the Nash–Sutcliffe efficiency index and RMSE between modelled and observed long-term statistics. This information combined with a literature review of the performance of the CMIP3 models identified the following five models as the better performing models for the next phase of our analysis in assessing the uncertainty in runoff estimated from GCM projections of precipitation and temperature: HadCM3 (Hadley Centre for Climate Prediction and Research, MIROCM (Center for Climate System Research (The University of Tokyo, National

  19. Integrating climate change adaptation into forest management

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Spittlehouse, D.L. [British Columbia Ministry of Forestry, Victoria, BC (Canada)

    2005-10-01

    Although forest management decisions are often based on the assumption that the climate will remain relatively stable throughout a forest's life-time, the prospect of future climate change has challenged current decision-making processes. This paper reviewed challenges currently impeding responses to climate change and presented suggestions for integrating adaptation strategies into forest management. Adaptive actions reduce the risks of climate change by preparing for adverse effects and capitalizing on the benefits. However, the importance of forest ecosystems to society means that the direction and timing of adaptation should be carefully managed. Uncertainty in the magnitude and timing of future climate change is a significant challenge. In addition, different ecosystems are vulnerable to different aspects of change, and an important component of adaptation will be the balancing of different values. The size of the forested land base in most of Canada will mean that much of the forest will have to adjust to climatic changes without human intervention. Seed planning zones, reforestation standards and hydrologic and wildlife management guidelines are designed for the current climate regime, and there are currently no regulatory requirements for adaptation strategies. Societal adaptation will be a major component of any forest management adaptation strategy, and demands on forest resources will need to be revised. Adaptation to reduce the vulnerability of resources such as water quality and quantity and biological conservation will become high priorities in some areas. It was suggested that the adaptation of culverts, bridges and roads should be incorporated into an infrastructure replacement cycle. Areas for preservation where the future climate will become suitable for species whose current range is threatened by climate change should be identified. Adapting the forest through reforestation after disturbances such as harvest or fire was recommended. Other

  20. Climate Change Projections for African Urban Areas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simonis, Ingo; Engelbrecht, Francois; Bucchignani, Edoardo; Mercogliano, Paola; Naidoo, Mogesh

    2013-04-01

    Africa have been derived (six at CSIR and two at CMCC). That is, a multi-model ensemble of simulations of present-day and future climate has been made available for a number of African regions. This approach is most useful to describe the range of uncertainty associated with future climate. In order to obtain a set of plausible and physically defensible projections that can be used for a broad range of subsequent research questions, the two partners followed two different modelling approaches. The first approach, (by CMCC) uses a single dynamic climate change model: the model gets executed several times using a number of pertubations, e.g. changing initial conditions to account for the non-linear dynamics, perturbations of the boundary conditions to account for the 'imperfect' characterizations of the non-atmospheric components of the climate system or to handle the uncertainty of the driving global model, or perturbations of the model physics to account for the uncertainties inherent in the parameterizations. The second approach, (by CSIR) keeps the boundary conditions static but downscales a number of different global circulation models to account for the uncertainties inherent in the models themselves. In total, CSIR has run six different dynamic models. All runs have been conducted on super computing clusters to be completed within reasonable timeframes. The full data set is currently made available on the web. A number of tools is used to provide maximum user experience for climate change experts, social geographers, city planners and policy decision makers.

  1. Climate change and avian influenza

    OpenAIRE

    Gilbert, Marius; Slingenbergh, Jan; Xiao, Xiangming

    2008-01-01

    This paper discusses impacts of climate change on the ecology of avian influenza viruses (AI viruses), which presumably co-evolved with migratory water birds, with virus also persisting outside the host in subarctic water bodies. Climate change would almost certainly alter bird migration, influence the AI virus transmission cycle and directly affect virus survival outside the host. The joint, net effects of these changes are rather unpredictable, but it is likely that AI virus circulation in ...

  2. Future methane, hydroxyl, and their uncertainties: key climate and emission parameters for future predictions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. D. Holmes

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Accurate prediction of future methane abundances following a climate scenario requires understanding the lifetime changes driven by anthropogenic emissions, meteorological factors, and chemistry-climate feedbacks. Uncertainty in any of these influences or the underlying processes implies uncertainty in future abundance and radiative forcing. We simulate methane lifetime in multiple models over the period 1997–2009, adding sensitivity tests to determine key variables that drive the year-to-year variability. Across three atmospheric chemistry and transport models – UCI CTM, GEOS-Chem, and Oslo CTM3 – we find that temperature, water vapor, ozone column, biomass burning and lightning NOx are the dominant sources of interannual changes in methane lifetime. We also evaluate the model responses to forcings that have impacts on decadal time scales, such as methane feedback, and anthropogenic NOx emissions. In general, these different CTMs show similar sensitivities to the driving variables. We construct a parametric model that reproduces most of the interannual variability of each CTM and use it to predict methane lifetime from 1980 through 2100 following a specified emissions and climate scenario (RCP 8.5. The parametric model propagates uncertainties through all steps and provides a foundation for predicting methane abundances in any climate scenario. Our sensitivity tests also enable a new estimate of the methane global warming potential (GWP, accounting for stratospheric ozone effects, including those mediated by water vapor. We estimate the 100-yr GWP to be 32.

  3. Modelling impacts of climate change on arable crop diseases: progress, challenges and applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newbery, Fay; Qi, Aiming; Fitt, Bruce Dl

    2016-08-01

    Combining climate change, crop growth and crop disease models to predict impacts of climate change on crop diseases can guide planning of climate change adaptation strategies to ensure future food security. This review summarises recent developments in modelling climate change impacts on crop diseases, emphasises some major challenges and highlights recent trends. The use of multi-model ensembles in climate change modelling and crop modelling is contributing towards measures of uncertainty in climate change impact projections but other aspects of uncertainty remain largely unexplored. Impact assessments are still concentrated on few crops and few diseases but are beginning to investigate arable crop disease dynamics at the landscape level.

  4. Modelling impacts of climate change on arable crop diseases: progress, challenges and applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newbery, Fay; Qi, Aiming; Fitt, Bruce Dl

    2016-08-01

    Combining climate change, crop growth and crop disease models to predict impacts of climate change on crop diseases can guide planning of climate change adaptation strategies to ensure future food security. This review summarises recent developments in modelling climate change impacts on crop diseases, emphasises some major challenges and highlights recent trends. The use of multi-model ensembles in climate change modelling and crop modelling is contributing towards measures of uncertainty in climate change impact projections but other aspects of uncertainty remain largely unexplored. Impact assessments are still concentrated on few crops and few diseases but are beginning to investigate arable crop disease dynamics at the landscape level. PMID:27471781

  5. Uncertainty in predicting range dynamics of endemic alpine plants under climate warming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hülber, Karl; Wessely, Johannes; Gattringer, Andreas; Moser, Dietmar; Kuttner, Michael; Essl, Franz; Leitner, Michael; Winkler, Manuela; Ertl, Siegrun; Willner, Wolfgang; Kleinbauer, Ingrid; Sauberer, Norbert; Mang, Thomas; Zimmermann, Niklaus E; Dullinger, Stefan

    2016-07-01

    Correlative species distribution models have long been the predominant approach to predict species' range responses to climate change. Recently, the use of dynamic models is increasingly advocated for because these models better represent the main processes involved in range shifts and also simulate transient dynamics. A well-known problem with the application of these models is the lack of data for estimating necessary parameters of demographic and dispersal processes. However, what has been hardly considered so far is the fact that simulating transient dynamics potentially implies additional uncertainty arising from our ignorance of short-term climate variability in future climatic trends. Here, we use endemic mountain plants of Austria as a case study to assess how the integration of decadal variability in future climate affects outcomes of dynamic range models as compared to projected long-term trends and uncertainty in demographic and dispersal parameters. We do so by contrasting simulations of a so-called hybrid model run under fluctuating climatic conditions with those based on a linear interpolation of climatic conditions between current values and those predicted for the end of the 21st century. We find that accounting for short-term climate variability modifies model results nearly as differences in projected long-term trends and much more than uncertainty in demographic/dispersal parameters. In particular, range loss and extinction rates are much higher when simulations are run under fluctuating conditions. These results highlight the importance of considering the appropriate temporal resolution when parameterizing and applying range-dynamic models, and hybrid models in particular. In case of our endemic mountain plants, we hypothesize that smoothed linear time series deliver more reliable results because these long-lived species are primarily responsive to long-term climate averages.

  6. Uncertainty in predicting range dynamics of endemic alpine plants under climate warming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hülber, Karl; Wessely, Johannes; Gattringer, Andreas; Moser, Dietmar; Kuttner, Michael; Essl, Franz; Leitner, Michael; Winkler, Manuela; Ertl, Siegrun; Willner, Wolfgang; Kleinbauer, Ingrid; Sauberer, Norbert; Mang, Thomas; Zimmermann, Niklaus E; Dullinger, Stefan

    2016-07-01

    Correlative species distribution models have long been the predominant approach to predict species' range responses to climate change. Recently, the use of dynamic models is increasingly advocated for because these models better represent the main processes involved in range shifts and also simulate transient dynamics. A well-known problem with the application of these models is the lack of data for estimating necessary parameters of demographic and dispersal processes. However, what has been hardly considered so far is the fact that simulating transient dynamics potentially implies additional uncertainty arising from our ignorance of short-term climate variability in future climatic trends. Here, we use endemic mountain plants of Austria as a case study to assess how the integration of decadal variability in future climate affects outcomes of dynamic range models as compared to projected long-term trends and uncertainty in demographic and dispersal parameters. We do so by contrasting simulations of a so-called hybrid model run under fluctuating climatic conditions with those based on a linear interpolation of climatic conditions between current values and those predicted for the end of the 21st century. We find that accounting for short-term climate variability modifies model results nearly as differences in projected long-term trends and much more than uncertainty in demographic/dispersal parameters. In particular, range loss and extinction rates are much higher when simulations are run under fluctuating conditions. These results highlight the importance of considering the appropriate temporal resolution when parameterizing and applying range-dynamic models, and hybrid models in particular. In case of our endemic mountain plants, we hypothesize that smoothed linear time series deliver more reliable results because these long-lived species are primarily responsive to long-term climate averages. PMID:27061825

  7. Climatic change; Le Changement climatique

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Perthuis, Ch. de [Universite de Paris-Dauphine, 75 - Paris (France); Caisse des depots, Mission climat, 75 - Paris (France); Delbosc, A. [Caisse des depots, Mission climat, 75 - Paris (France)

    2009-07-01

    Received ideas about climatic change are a mixture of right and wrong information. The authors use these ideas as starting points to shade light on what we really know and what we believe to know. The book is divided in three main chapters: should we act in front of climatic change? How can we efficiently act? How can we equitably act? For each chapter a series of received ideas is analyzed in order to find those which can usefully contribute to mitigate the environmental, economical and social impacts of climatic change. (J.S.)

  8. Inhalation anaesthetics and climate change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Mads Peter Sulbæk; Sander, S P; Nielsen, O J;

    2010-01-01

    Although the increasing abundance of CO(2) in our atmosphere is the main driver of the observed climate change, it is the cumulative effect of all forcing agents that dictate the direction and magnitude of the change, and many smaller contributors are also at play. Isoflurane, desflurane......, and sevoflurane are widely used inhalation anaesthetics. Emissions of these compounds contribute to radiative forcing of climate change. To quantitatively assess the impact of the anaesthetics on the forcing of climate, detailed information on their properties of heat (infrared, IR) absorption and atmospheric...

  9. Detection of greenhouse-gas-induced climatic change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The aims of the US Department of Energy's Carbon Dioxide Research Program are to improve assessments of greenhouse-gas-induced climatic change and to define and reduce uncertainties through selected research. This project will address: The regional and seasonal details of the expected climatic changes; how rapidly will these changes occur; how and when will the climatic effects of CO2 and other greenhouse gases be first detected; and the relationships between greenhouse-gas-induced climatic change and changes caused by other external and internal factors. The present project addresses all of these questions. Many of the diverse facets of greenhouse-gas-related climate research can be grouped under three interlinked subject areas: modeling, first detection and supporting data. This project will include the analysis of climate forcing factors, the development and refinement of transient response climate models, and the use of instrumental data in validating General Circulation Models (GCMs)

  10. Ground water and climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    As the world’s largest distributed store of fresh water, ground water plays a central part in sustaining ecosystems and enabling human adaptation to climate variability and change. The strategic importance of ground water for global water and food secu¬rity will probably intensify under climate chan...

  11. Deliberating Climate Change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Agger, Annika; Jelsøe, Erling; Jæger, Birgit;

    to include the voice of the citizens into complex scientific and technological issues. The purpose of WWV was to pass on the opinions of ordinary citizens to political decision-makers at The United Nations Climate Summit, COP15, in Copenhagen in December 2009. The authors made a study of the Danish WWV event...

  12. Coping with climate change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zheng, Yuan; Byg, Anja

    2014-01-01

    found across villages regarding the degree of perceived sensitivity and responses despite similar exposure to climate extremes. These differences are partly related to the nature of events and varied socio-economic characteristics of households, which influence their vulnerability and ability to cope...

  13. International aspects of climate change: The intergovernmental panel on climate change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The impact of various international conferences concerning global climate change on international opinions and attitudes is discussed. A number of conferences over the past two decades have drawn attention to the large socio-economic consequences of climate change. There has been increasing attention given to the likely affect of anthropogenically derived greenhouse gases on the global climate. Some early uncertainty over the likely long term changes in global temperature have been replaced by a scientific consensus that global temperatures are increasing and will continue to do so into the next century. Public awareness of the possibility of climate change and severe socio-economic consequences has been increasing and was given a major impetus by the Toronto Conference on the Changing Atmosphere. An estimate of the possible time to solution of the climate change issue is given as 1988-2005, a span of 17 years. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has focused work into three working groups examining science, impacts and response strategies. 28 refs., 3 figs., 6 tabs

  14. Can Climate Change Negotiations Succeed?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jon Hovi

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available More than two decades of climate change negotiations have produced a series of global climate agreements, such as the Kyoto Protocol and the Copenhagen Accords, but have nevertheless made very limited progress in curbing global emissions of greenhouse gases. This paper considers whether negotiations can succeed in reaching an agreement that effectively addresses the climate change problem. To be effective, a climate agreement must cause substantial emissions reductions either directly (in the agreement's own lifetime or indirectly (by paving the way for a future agreement that causes substantial emissions reductions directly. To reduce global emissions substantially, an agreement must satisfy three conditions. Firstly, participation must be both comprehensive and stable. Secondly, participating countries must accept deep commitments. Finally, the agreement must obtain high compliance rates. We argue that three types of enforcement will be crucial to fulfilling these three conditions: (1 incentives for countries to ratify with deep commitments, (2 incentives for countries that have ratified with deep commitments to abstain from withdrawal, and (3 incentives for countries having ratified with deep commitments to comply with them. Based on assessing the constraints that characterize the climate change negotiations, we contend that adopting such three-fold potent enforcement will likely be politically infeasible, not only within the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, but also in the framework of a more gradual approach. Therefore, one should not expect climate change negotiations to succeed in producing an effective future agreement—either directly or indirectly.

  15. Climate change; Le changement climatique

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2010-07-01

    Based on contributions on 120 French and foreign scientists representing different disciplines (mathematics, physics, mechanics, chemistry, biology, medicine, and so on), this report proposes an overview of the scientific knowledge and debate about climate change. It discusses the various indicators of climate evolution (temperatures, ice surfaces, sea level, biological indicators) and the various factors which may contribute to climate evolution (greenhouse gases, solar radiation). It also comments climate evolutions in the past as they can be investigated through some geological, thermal or geochemical indicators. Then, the authors describe and discuss the various climate mechanisms: solar activity, oceans, ice caps, greenhouse gases. In a third part, the authors discuss the different types of climate models which differ by the way they describe processes, and the current validation process for these models

  16. Relative role of parameter vs. climate uncertainty for predictions of future Southeastern U.S. pine carbon cycling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jersild, A.; Thomas, R. Q.; Brooks, E.; Teskey, R. O.; Wynne, R. H.; Arthur, D.; Gonzalez, C.; Thomas, V. A.; Fox, T. D.; Smallman, L.

    2015-12-01

    Predictions of the how forest productivity and carbon sequestration will respond to climate change are essential for assisting land managers in adapting to future climate. However, current predictions can include considerable uncertainty that is often not well quantified. To address the need for better quantification of uncertainty, we calculated and compared parameter and climate prediction uncertainty for predictions of Southeastern U.S. pine forest productivity. We used a Metropolis-Hastings Markov Chain Monte Carlo-based data assimilation technique to fuse regionally widespread and diverse datasets with the Physiological Principles Predicting Growth model (3PG) model. The datasets incorporated include biomass observations from forest research plots that are part of the Pine Integrated Network: Education, Mitigation, and Adaptation project (PINEMAP) project, photosynthesis and evaporation observations from loblolly pine Ameriflux sites, and productivity responses to elevated CO2 from the Duke Free Air C site. These spatially and temporally diverse data sets give our unique analysis a more accurately measured uncertainty by constraining complimentary components of the model. In our analysis, parameter uncertainty was quantified using simulations that integrate across the posterior parameter distributions, while climate model uncertainty was quantified using downscaled RCP 8.5 simulations from twenty different CMIP5 climate models. Overall, we found that the uncertainty in future productivity of Southeastern U.S. managed pine forests that was associated with parameterization is comparable to the uncertainty associated with climate simulations. Our results indicate that reducing parameterization in ecosystem model development can improve future predictions of forest productivity and carbon sequestration, but uncertainties in future climate predictions also need to be properly quantified and communicated to forest owners and managers.

  17. Cities lead on climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pancost, Richard D.

    2016-04-01

    The need to mitigate climate change opens up a key role for cities. Bristol's year as a Green Capital led to great strides forward, but it also revealed that a creative and determined partnership across cultural divides will be necessary.

  18. Welfare impacts of climate change

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hof, Andries F.

    2015-01-01

    Climate change can affect well-being in poor economies more than previously shown if its effect on economic growth, and not only on current production, is considered. But this result does not necessarily suggest greater mitigation efforts are required.

  19. Making Sense of Climate Change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Blichfeldt, Nikolaj Vendelbo

    The thesis is an ethnographic description of a climate change mitigation campaign among retirees in the urban residential community Dongping Lane in central Hangzhou, and an examination of local understandings of connections between everyday life in the community and global climate change......, as a point of departure for an examination of what happens when a requirement to save energy and resources, as a response to global climate change, encounters local ways of knowing the world. Developed through meetings, workshops, competitions and the promotion of exemplary individuals, the campaign...... is conceived as part of wider state-sponsored efforts to foster civilized behavior and a sense of belonging to the residential community among urban citizens in China. The campaigners connect unspectacular everyday consumer practices with climate change and citizenship by showing that among them, making...

  20. Climate change and group dynamics

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Postmes, Tom

    2015-01-01

    The characteristics and views of people sceptical about climate change have been analysed extensively. A study now confirms that sceptics in the US have some characteristics of a social movement, but shows that the same group dynamics propel believers

  1. Climate Change Science Program Collection

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The Climate Change Science Program (CCSP) Collection consists of publications and other resources produced between 2007 and 2009 by the CCSP with the intention of...

  2. Climate change: Unattributed hurricane damage

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hallegatte, Stéphane

    2015-11-01

    In the United States, hurricanes have been causing more and more economic damage. A reanalysis of the disaster database using a statistical method that accounts for improvements in resilience opens the possibility that climate change has played a role.

  3. Climate impacts on human livelihoods: where uncertainty matters in projections of water availability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. K. Lissner

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Climate change will have adverse impacts on many different sectors of society, with manifold consequences for human livelihoods and well-being. However, a systematic method to quantify human well-being and livelihoods across sectors is so far unavailable, making it difficult to determine the extent of such impacts. Climate impact analyses are often limited to individual sectors (e.g. food or water and employ sector-specific target-measures, while systematic linkages to general livelihood conditions remain unexplored. Further, recent multi-model assessments have shown that uncertainties in projections of climate impacts deriving from climate and impact models as well as greenhouse gas scenarios are substantial, posing an additional challenge in linking climate impacts with livelihood conditions. This article first presents a methodology to consistently measure Adequate Human livelihood conditions for wEll-being And Development (AHEAD. Based on a transdisciplinary sample of influential concepts addressing human well-being, the approach measures the adequacy of conditions of 16 elements. We implement the method at global scale, using results from the Inter-Sectoral Impact Model Intercomparison Project (ISI-MIP to show how changes in water availability affect the fulfilment of AHEAD at national resolution. In addition, AHEAD allows identifying and differentiating uncertainty of climate and impact model projections. We show how the approach can help to put the substantial inter-model spread into the context of country-specific livelihood conditions by differentiating where the uncertainty about water scarcity is relevant with regard to livelihood conditions – and where it is not. The results indicate that in many countries today, livelihood conditions are compromised by water scarcity. However, more often, AHEAD fulfilment is limited through other elements. Moreover, the analysis shows that for 44 out of 111 countries, the water

  4. Responsible Reaction To Climate Change

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2007-01-01

    China calls for turning UNFCCC provisions into concrete actions Never before has climate change been as prominent on the public agenda as it is today.Its rele- vance was highlighted once again when more than 10,000 delegates from over 180 countries flocked to Bali early this month to discuss the topic.Environment officials as well as representatives from intergovernmental and nongovernmental organizations gath- ered on the Indonesian island on December 3-14 for the UN Climate Change Conference.

  5. Social protection and climate change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Johnson, Craig; Bansha Dulal, Hari; Prowse, Martin Philip;

    2013-01-01

    This article lays the foundation for this special issue on social protection and climate change, introducing and evaluating the ways in which the individual articles contribute to our understanding of the subject.......This article lays the foundation for this special issue on social protection and climate change, introducing and evaluating the ways in which the individual articles contribute to our understanding of the subject....

  6. Climate Change and Agricultural Vulnerability

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    After the introduction Chapter 2 presents details of the ecological-economic analysis based on the FAO/IIASA agro-ecological zones (AEZ) approach for evaluation of biophysical limitations and agricultural production potentials, and IIASA's Basic Linked System (BLS) for analyzing the world's food economy and trade system. The BLS is a global general equilibrium model system for analyzing agricultural policies and food system prospects in an international setting. BLS views national agricultural systems as embedded in national economies, which interact with each other through trade at the international level. The combination of AEZ and BLS provides an integrated ecological-economic framework for the assessment of the impact of climate change. We consider climate scenarios based on experiments with four General Circulation Models (GCM), and we assess the four basic socioeconomic development pathways and emission scenarios as formulated by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in its Third Assessment Report. Chapter 3 presents the main AEZ results of the impact of climate change on agriculture. Results comprise environmental constraints to crop agriculture; climate variability and the variability of rain-fed cereal production; changes in potential agricultural land; changes in crop-production patterns; and the impact of climate change on cereal-production potential. Chapter 4 discusses the AEZ-BLS integrated ecological-economic analysis of climate change on the world food system. This includes quantification of scale and location of hunger, international agricultural trade, prices, production, land use, etc. It assesses trends in food production, trade, and consumption, and the impact on poverty and hunger of alternative development pathways and varying levels of climate change. Chapter 5 presents the main conclusions and policy implications of this study

  7. Climate Change in Developing Countries

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Van Drunen, M.A.; Lasage, R.; Dorlands, C. (eds.) [Free University, Amsterdam (Netherlands)

    2006-09-15

    This book presents an overview of the studies conducted by the Netherlands Climate Change Studies Assistance programme. The programme was set up in recognition of the need for developing countries, in particular, to face the challenges confronting all countries under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. The book presents an overview of the main results in 13 countries: Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Egypt, Ghana, Kazakhstan, Mali, Mongolia, Senegal, Surinam, Vietnam, Yemen and Zimbabwe. It provides a critical evaluation of the methodologies and approaches used, a cross-country synthesis and recommendations for further studies. Subjects dealt with include not only impact studies, but also vulnerability and adaptation, mitigation and climate related policy.

  8. Climate Change Facts: Answers to Common Questions

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Basics Climate Change Facts: Answers to Common Questions Climate Change Facts: Answers to Common Questions This page ... All Responses Is there a scientific consensus on climate change? The major scientific agencies of the United ...

  9. Europeans' attitudes towards climate change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This report presents the results of a survey on Europeans' attitudes towards climate change which was carried out in January and February 2009. The survey focuses on: Citizens' perceptions of climate change in relation to other world problems; Citizens' perceptions of the seriousness of climate change; The extent to which citizens feel informed about climate change - its causes, consequences and ways of fighting it; Citizens' attitudes towards alternative fuels and CO2 emissions; Whether citizens feel that climate change is stoppable or has been exaggerated, and what impact it has on the European economy; Whether citizens have taken personal action to fight climate change. This Eurobarometer survey was carried out by TNS Opinion and Social network between 16 January and 22 February 2009. The interviews were conducted among 26,718 citizens in the 27 Member States of the European Union, the three candidate countries for accession to the European Union (Croatia, Turkey and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia) and in the Turkish Cypriot Community.

  10. Classifying climate change adaptation frameworks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Armstrong, Jennifer

    2014-05-01

    Complex socio-ecological demographics are factors that must be considered when addressing adaptation to the potential effects of climate change. As such, a suite of deployable climate change adaptation frameworks is necessary. Multiple frameworks that are required to communicate the risks of climate change and facilitate adaptation. Three principal adaptation frameworks have emerged from the literature; Scenario - Led (SL), Vulnerability - Led (VL) and Decision - Centric (DC). This study aims to identify to what extent these adaptation frameworks; either, planned or deployed are used in a neighbourhood vulnerable to climate change. This work presents a criterion that may be used as a tool for identifying the hallmarks of adaptation frameworks and thus enabling categorisation of projects. The study focussed on the coastal zone surrounding the Sizewell nuclear power plant in Suffolk in the UK. An online survey was conducted identifying climate change adaptation projects operating in the study area. This inventory was analysed to identify the hallmarks of each adaptation project; Levels of dependency on climate model information, Metrics/units of analysis utilised, Level of demographic knowledge, Level of stakeholder engagement, Adaptation implementation strategies and Scale of adaptation implementation. The study found that climate change adaptation projects could be categorised, based on the hallmarks identified, in accordance with the published literature. As such, the criterion may be used to establish the matrix of adaptation frameworks present in a given area. A comprehensive summary of the nature of adaptation frameworks in operation in a locality provides a platform for further comparative analysis. Such analysis, enabled by the criterion, may aid the selection of appropriate frameworks enhancing the efficacy of climate change adaptation.

  11. Climate variability and change in Ethiopia : exploring impacts and adaptation options for cereal production

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kassie, B.T.

    2014-01-01

    Key words: Climate change, Adaptation, Crop modelling, Uncertainty, Maize (Zea mays), Central Rift Valley. Smallholder farmers in Ethiopia have been facing severe climate related hazards, in particular highly variable rainfall and severe droughts that negativelyaffect their livelihoods.Anticipated

  12. Executive summary for assessing the near-term risk of climate uncertainty : interdependencies among the U.S. states.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Loose, Verne W.; Lowry, Thomas Stephen; Malczynski, Leonard A.; Tidwell, Vincent Carroll; Stamber, Kevin Louis; Reinert, Rhonda K.; Backus, George A.; Warren, Drake E.; Zagonel, Aldo A.; Ehlen, Mark Andrew; Klise, Geoffrey T.; Vargas, Vanessa N.

    2010-04-01

    Policy makers will most likely need to make decisions about climate policy before climate scientists have resolved all relevant uncertainties about the impacts of climate change. This study demonstrates a risk-assessment methodology for evaluating uncertain future climatic conditions. We estimate the impacts of climate change on U.S. state- and national-level economic activity from 2010 to 2050. To understand the implications of uncertainty on risk and to provide a near-term rationale for policy interventions to mitigate the course of climate change, we focus on precipitation, one of the most uncertain aspects of future climate change. We use results of the climate-model ensemble from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) Fourth Assessment Report 4 (AR4) as a proxy for representing climate uncertainty over the next 40 years, map the simulated weather from the climate models hydrologically to the county level to determine the physical consequences on economic activity at the state level, and perform a detailed 70-industry analysis of economic impacts among the interacting lower-48 states. We determine the industry-level contribution to the gross domestic product and employment impacts at the state level, as well as interstate population migration, effects on personal income, and consequences for the U.S. trade balance. We show that the mean or average risk of damage to the U.S. economy from climate change, at the national level, is on the order of $1 trillion over the next 40 years, with losses in employment equivalent to nearly 7 million full-time jobs.

  13. Assessing uncertainty in high-resolution spatial climate data across the US Northeast.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel A Bishop

    Full Text Available Local and regional-scale knowledge of climate change is needed to model ecosystem responses, assess vulnerabilities and devise effective adaptation strategies. High-resolution gridded historical climate (GHC products address this need, but come with multiple sources of uncertainty that are typically not well understood by data users. To better understand this uncertainty in a region with a complex climatology, we conducted a ground-truthing analysis of two 4 km GHC temperature products (PRISM and NRCC for the US Northeast using 51 Cooperative Network (COOP weather stations utilized by both GHC products. We estimated GHC prediction error for monthly temperature means and trends (1980-2009 across the US Northeast and evaluated any landscape effects (e.g., elevation, distance from coast on those prediction errors. Results indicated that station-based prediction errors for the two GHC products were similar in magnitude, but on average, the NRCC product predicted cooler than observed temperature means and trends, while PRISM was cooler for means and warmer for trends. We found no evidence for systematic sources of uncertainty across the US Northeast, although errors were largest at high elevations. Errors in the coarse-scale (4 km digital elevation models used by each product were correlated with temperature prediction errors, more so for NRCC than PRISM. In summary, uncertainty in spatial climate data has many sources and we recommend that data users develop an understanding of uncertainty at the appropriate scales for their purposes. To this end, we demonstrate a simple method for utilizing weather stations to assess local GHC uncertainty and inform decisions among alternative GHC products.

  14. Climate Change and Nuclear Power

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The 1992 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change is one of a series of recent agreements through which countries around the world are banding together to meet the challenge of altering the global climate. In 1997, in respond to the growing public pressure and questions on climate change governments adopted the Kyoto Protocol. The 5th Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP5 UNFCCC) was a rather technical and complex conference which focused in particular on the development of a detailed framework for the application of ''flexible mechanisms'' as laid down in the Kyoto Protocol. Young Generation Network as a part of the International Nuclear Forum at COP5 took part in the debate saying that nuclear is the part of the solution. (author)

  15. Climate change and preventive medicine

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Faergeman, Ole

    2007-01-01

    disease do not result from climate change, but they do share causes with climate change. Burning fossil fuels, for example, is the major source of greenhouse gases, but it also makes pervasive physical inactivity possible. Similarly, modern agriculture's enormous production of livestock contributes...... substantially to greenhouse gas emissions, and it is the source of many of our most energy-rich foods. Physicians and societies of medical professionals have a particular responsibility, therefore, to contribute to the public discourse about climate change and what to do about it. Udgivelsesdato: 2007-Dec......Thermal stress, food poisoning, infectious diseases, malnutrition, psychiatric illness as well as injury and death from floods, storms and fire are all likely to become more common as the earth warms and the climate becomes more variable. In contrast, obesity, type II diabetes and coronary artery...

  16. CLIMATE CHANGES: CAUSES AND IMPACT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Camelia Slave

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Present brings several environmental problems for people. Many of these are closely related, but by far the most important problem is the climate change. In the course of Earth evolution, climate has changed many times, sometimes dramatically. Warmer eras always replaced and were in turn replaced by glacial ones. However, the climate of the past almost ten thousand years has been very stable. During this period human civilization has also developed. In the past nearly 100 years - since the beginning of industrialization - the global average temperature has increased by approx. 0.6 ° C (after IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, faster than at any time in the last 1000 years.

  17. Uncertainty As a Trigger for a Paradigm Change in Science Communication

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider, S.

    2014-12-01

    Over the last decade, the need to communicate uncertainty increased. Climate sciences and environmental sciences have faced massive propaganda campaigns by global industry and astroturf organizations. These organizations use the deep societal mistrust in uncertainty to point out alleged unethical and intentional delusion of decision makers and the public by scientists and their consultatory function. Scientists, who openly communicate uncertainty of climate model calculations, earthquake occurrence frequencies, or possible side effects of genetic manipulated semen have to face massive campaigns against their research, and sometimes against their person and live as well. Hence, new strategies to communicate uncertainty have to face the societal roots of the misunderstanding of the concept of uncertainty itself. Evolutionary biology has shown, that human mind is well suited for practical decision making by its sensory structures. Therefore, many of the irrational concepts about uncertainty are mitigated if data is presented in formats the brain is adapted to understand. At the end, the impact of uncertainty to the decision-making process is finally dominantly driven by preconceptions about terms such as uncertainty, vagueness or probabilities. Parallel to the increasing role of scientific uncertainty in strategic communication, science communicators for example at the Research and Development Program GEOTECHNOLOGIEN developed a number of techniques to master the challenge of putting uncertainty in the focus. By raising the awareness of scientific uncertainty as a driving force for scientific development and evolution, the public perspective on uncertainty is changing. While first steps to implement this process are under way, the value of uncertainty still is underestimated in the public and in politics. Therefore, science communicators are in need for new and innovative ways to talk about scientific uncertainty.

  18. Economics of adaptation to climate change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This report proposes a general economic framework for the issue of adaptation to climate change in order to help public and private actors to build up efficient adaptation strategies. It proposes a general definition of adaptation, identifies the major stakes for these strategies, and discusses the assessment of global costs of adaptation to climate change. It discusses the role and modalities of public action and gives some examples of possible adaptation measures in some important sectors (building and town planning, energy and transport infrastructures, water and agriculture, ecosystems, insurance). It examines the regional and national dimensions of adaptation and their relationship, and defines steps for implementing an adaptation strategy. It describes and discusses the use of economic tools in the elaboration of an adaptation strategy, i.e. how to take uncertainties into account, which scenarios to choose, how to use economic calculations to assess adaptation policies

  19. National plan for adaptation to climate change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This report first explains the rationale for such a plan, and discusses the costs associated to climate change impacts. It presents two scenarios for climate change in France during the 21. century, highlights the weight of uncertainty for the results of these scenarios, and indicates some current consequences. Then, it presents the Plan content and gives an overview of the Plan governance and evaluation. It proposes a set of action sheets which contain the main adopted measures and briefly describe some implemented or projected actions. These sheets concern the different fields of application of the plan: cross-cutting actions, health, water resources, biodiversity, natural hazards, agriculture, forest, fishery and aquaculture, energy and industry, transport infrastructures and systems, urban planning and built environment, tourism, information, education and training, research, finance and insurance, coasts, mountains, European and international actions, governance

  20. Late Quaternary changes in climate

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This review concerns the Quaternary climate with an emphasis on the last 200 000 years. The present state of art in this field is described and evaluated. The review builds on a thorough examination of classic and recent literature. General as well as detailed patterns in climate are described and the forcing factors and feed-back effects are discussed. Changes in climate occur on all time-scales. During more than 90% of the Quaternary period earth has experienced vast ice sheets, i.e. glaciations have been more normal for the period than the warm interglacial conditions we face today. Major changes in climate, such as the 100 000 years glacial/interglacial cycle, are forced by the Milankovitch three astronomical cycles. Because the cycles have different length climate changes on earth do not follow a simple pattern and it is not possible to find perfect analogues of a certain period in the geological record. Recent discoveries include the observation that major changes in climate seem to occur at the same time on both hemispheres, although the astronomical theory implies a time-lag between latitudes. This probably reflects the influence of feed-back effects within the climate system. Another recent finding of importance is the rapid fluctuations that seem to be a normal process. When earth warmed after the last glaciation temperature jumps of up to 10 deg C occurred within less than a decade and precipitation more than doubled within the same time. The forcing factors behind these rapid fluctuations are not well understood but are believed to be a result of major re-organisations in the oceanic circulation. Realizing that nature, on its own, can cause rapid climate changes of this magnitude put some perspective on the anthropogenic global warming debate, where it is believed that the release of greenhouse gases will result in a global warming of a few C. To understand the forcing behind natural rapid climate changes appears as important as to understand the role

  1. Late Quaternary changes in climate

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Holmgren, K.; Karlen, W. [Stockholm Univ. (Sweden). Dept. of Physical Geography

    1998-12-01

    This review concerns the Quaternary climate with an emphasis on the last 200 000 years. The present state of art in this field is described and evaluated. The review builds on a thorough examination of classic and recent literature. General as well as detailed patterns in climate are described and the forcing factors and feed-back effects are discussed. Changes in climate occur on all time-scales. During more than 90% of the Quaternary period earth has experienced vast ice sheets, i.e. glaciations have been more normal for the period than the warm interglacial conditions we face today. Major changes in climate, such as the 100 000 years glacial/interglacial cycle, are forced by the Milankovitch three astronomical cycles. Because the cycles have different length climate changes on earth do not follow a simple pattern and it is not possible to find perfect analogues of a certain period in the geological record. Recent discoveries include the observation that major changes in climate seem to occur at the same time on both hemispheres, although the astronomical theory implies a time-lag between latitudes. This probably reflects the influence of feed-back effects within the climate system. Another recent finding of importance is the rapid fluctuations that seem to be a normal process. When earth warmed after the last glaciation temperature jumps of up to 10 deg C occurred within less than a decade and precipitation more than doubled within the same time. The forcing factors behind these rapid fluctuations are not well understood but are believed to be a result of major re-organisations in the oceanic circulation. Realizing that nature, on its own, can cause rapid climate changes of this magnitude put some perspective on the anthropogenic global warming debate, where it is believed that the release of greenhouse gases will result in a global warming of a few C. To understand the forcing behind natural rapid climate changes appears as important as to understand the role

  2. Systemic change increases forecast uncertainty of land use change models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verstegen, J. A.; Karssenberg, D.; van der Hilst, F.; Faaij, A.

    2013-12-01

    Cellular Automaton (CA) models of land use change are based on the assumption that the relationship between land use change and its explanatory processes is stationary. This means that model structure and parameterization are usually kept constant over time, ignoring potential systemic changes in this relationship resulting from societal changes, thereby overlooking a source of uncertainty. Evaluation of the stationarity of the relationship between land use and a set of spatial attributes has been done by others (e.g., Bakker and Veldkamp, 2012). These studies, however, use logistic regression, separate from the land use change model. Therefore, they do not gain information on how to implement the spatial attributes into the model. In addition, they often compare observations for only two points in time and do not check whether the change is statistically significant. To overcome these restrictions, we assimilate a time series of observations of real land use into a land use change CA (Verstegen et al., 2012), using a Bayesian data assimilation technique, the particle filter. The particle filter was used to update the prior knowledge about the parameterization and model structure, i.e. the selection and relative importance of the drivers of location of land use change. In a case study of sugar cane expansion in Brazil, optimal model structure and parameterization were determined for each point in time for which observations were available (all years from 2004 to 2012). A systemic change, i.e. a statistically significant deviation in model structure, was detected for the period 2006 to 2008. In this period the influence on the location of sugar cane expansion of the driver sugar cane in the neighborhood doubled, while the influence of slope and potential yield decreased by 75% and 25% respectively. Allowing these systemic changes to occur in our CA in the future (up to 2022) resulted in an increase in model forecast uncertainty by a factor two compared to the

  3. The Pace of Perceivable Extreme Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan, X.; Gan, T. Y.

    2015-12-01

    When will the signal of obvious changes in extreme climate emerge over climate variability (Time of Emergence, ToE) is a key question for planning and implementing measures to mitigate the potential impact of climate change to natural and human systems that are generally adapted to potential changes from current variability. We estimated ToEs for the magnitude, duration and frequency of global extreme climate represented by 24 extreme climate indices (16 for temperature and 8 for precipitation) with different thresholds of the signal-to-noise (S/N) ratio based on projections of CMIP5 global climate models under RCP8.5 and RCP4.5 for the 21st century. The uncertainty of ToE is assessed by using 3 different methods to calculate S/N for each extreme index. Results show that ToEs of the projected extreme climate indices based on the RCP4.5 climate scenarios are generally projected to happen about 20 years later than that for the RCP8.5 climate scenarios. Under RCP8.5, the projected magnitude, duration and frequency of extreme temperature on Earth will all exceed 2 standard deviations by 2100, and the empirical 50th percentile of the global ToE for the frequency and magnitude of hot (cold) extreme are about 2040 and 2054 (2064 and 2054) for S/N > 2, respectively. The 50th percentile of global ToE for the intensity of extreme precipitation is about 2030 and 2058 for S/N >0.5 and S/N >1, respectively. We further evaluated the exposure of ecosystems and human societies to the pace of extreme climate change by determining the year of ToE for various extreme climate indices projected to occur over terrestrial biomes, marine realms and major urban areas with large populations. This was done by overlaying terrestrial, ecoregions and population maps with maps of ToE derived, to extract ToEs for these regions. Possible relationships between GDP per person and ToE are also investigated by relating the mean ToE for each country and its average value of GDP per person.

  4. Ocean Observations of Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chambers, Don

    2016-01-01

    The ocean influences climate by storing and transporting large amounts of heat, freshwater, and carbon, and exchanging these properties with the atmosphere. About 93% of the excess heat energy stored by the earth over the last 50 years is found in the ocean. More than three quarters of the total exchange of water between the atmosphere and the earth's surface through evaporation and precipitation takes place over the oceans. The ocean contains 50 times more carbon than the atmosphere and is at present acting to slow the rate of climate change by absorbing one quarter of human emissions of carbon dioxide from fossil fuel burning, cement production, deforestation and other land use change.Here I summarize the observational evidence of change in the ocean, with an emphasis on basin- and global-scale changes relevant to climate. These include: changes in subsurface ocean temperature and heat content, evidence for regional changes in ocean salinity and their link to changes in evaporation and precipitation over the oceans, evidence of variability and change of ocean current patterns relevant to climate, observations of sea level change and predictions over the next century, and biogeochemical changes in the ocean, including ocean acidification.

  5. The Fatter the Tail, the Fatter the Climate Agreement : Simulating the Influence of Fat Tails in Climate Change Damages on the Success of International Climate Negotiations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dekker, T.; Dellink, R.B.; Ketterer, J.

    2012-01-01

    International climate negotiations take place in a setting where uncertainties regarding the impacts of climate change are very large. In this paper, we examine the influence of increasing the probability and impact of large climate change damages, also known as the ‘fat tail’, on the formation of a

  6. The Fatter the Tail, the Fatter the Climate Agreement. Simulating the Influence of Fat Tails in Climate Change Damages on the Success of International Climate Negotiations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dellink, R.B.; Dekker, T.; Ketterer, J.

    2013-01-01

    International climate negotiations take place in a setting where uncertainties regarding the impacts of climate change are very large. In this paper, we examine the influence of increasing the probability and impact of large climate change damages, also known as the ‘fat tail’, on the formation of a

  7. The effect of climate and climate change on ammonia emissions in Europe

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Skjøth, Carsten Ambelas; Geels, Camilla

    2013-01-01

    to a standard Danish pig stable with 1000 animals and display how emissions from this source would vary geographically throughout central and northern Europe and from year to year. In view of future climate changes, we also evaluate the potential future changes in emission by including temperature projections...... from an ensemble of climate models. The results point towards four overall issues. (1) Emissions can easily vary by 20% for different geographical locations within a country due to overall variations in climate. The largest uncertainties are seen for large countries such as the UK, Germany and France....... (2) Annual variations in overall climate can at specific locations cause uncertainties in the range of 20 %. (3) Climate change may increase emissions by 0–40% in central to northern Europe. (4) Gradients in existing emission inventories that are seen between neighbour countries (e.g. between the UK...

  8. Climate Change Projections of the North American Regional Climate Change Assessment Program (NARCCAP)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mearns, L. O.; Sain, Steve; Leung, Lai-Yung R.; Bukovsky, M. S.; McGinnis, Seth; Biner, S.; Caya, Daniel; Arritt, R.; Gutowski, William; Takle, Eugene S.; Snyder, Mark A.; Jones, Richard; Nunes, A M B.; Tucker, S.; Herzmann, D.; McDaniel, Larry; Sloan, Lisa

    2013-10-01

    We investigate major results of the NARCCAP multiple regional climate model (RCM) experiments driven by multiple global climate models (GCMs) regarding climate change for seasonal temperature and precipitation over North America. We focus on two major questions: How do the RCM simulated climate changes differ from those of the parent GCMs and thus affect our perception of climate change over North America, and how important are the relative contributions of RCMs and GCMs to the uncertainty (variance explained) for different seasons and variables? The RCMs tend to produce stronger climate changes for precipitation: larger increases in the northern part of the domain in winter and greater decreases across a swath of the central part in summer, compared to the four GCMs driving the regional models as well as to the full set of CMIP3 GCM results. We pose some possible process-level mechanisms for the difference in intensity of change, particularly for summer. Detailed process-level studies will be necessary to establish mechanisms and credibility of these results. The GCMs explain more variance for winter temperature and the RCMs for summer temperature. The same is true for precipitation patterns. Thus, we recommend that future RCM-GCM experiments over this region include a balanced number of GCMs and RCMs.

  9. Reliability, sensitivity, and uncertainty of reservoir performance under climate variability in basins with different hydrogeologic settings

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Mateus

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available This study investigated how reservoir performance varied across different hydrogeologic settings and under plausible future climate scenarios. The study was conducted in the Santiam River basin, OR, USA, comparing the North Santiam basin (NSB, with high permeability and extensive groundwater storage, and the South Santiam basin (SSB, with low permeability, little groundwater storage, and rapid runoff response. We applied projections of future temperature and precipitation from global climate models to a rainfall-runoff model, coupled with a formal Bayesian uncertainty analysis, to project future inflow hydrographs as inputs to a reservoir operations model. The performance of reservoir operations was evaluated as the reliability in meeting flood management, spring and summer environmental flows, and hydropower generation objectives. Despite projected increases in winter flows and decreases in summer flows, results suggested little evidence of a response in reservoir operation performance to a warming climate, with the exception of summer flow targets in the SSB. Independent of climate impacts, historical prioritization of reservoir operations appeared to impact reliability, suggesting areas where operation performance may be improved. Results also highlighted how hydrologic uncertainty is likely to complicate planning for climate change in basins with substantial groundwater interactions.

  10. Uncertainties in predicting rice yield by current crop models under a wide range of climatic conditions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Li, T.; Hasegawa, T.; Yin, X.; Zhu, Y.; Boote, K.; Adam, M.; Bregaglio, S.; Buis, S.; Confalonieri, R.; Fumoto, T.; Gaydon, D.; Marcaida III, M.; Nakagawa, H.; Oriol, P.; Ruane, A.C.; Ruget, F.; Singh, B.; Singh, U.; Tang, L.; Yoshida, H.; Zhang, Z.; Bouman, B.

    2015-01-01

    Predicting rice (Oryza sativa) productivity under future climates is important for global food security. Ecophysiological crop models in combination with climate model outputs are commonly used in yield prediction, but uncertainties associated with crop models remain largely unquantified. We evaluat

  11. A deeper look at climate change and national security.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Baker, Arnold Barry; Backus, George A.; Romig, Alton Dale, Jr.

    2010-03-01

    Climate change is a long-term process that will trigger a range of multi-dimensional demographic, economic, geopolitical, and national security issues with many unknowns and significant uncertainties. At first glance, climate-change-related national security dimensions seem far removed from today's major national security threats. Yet climate change has already set in motion forces that will require U.S. attention and preparedness. The extent and uncertainty associated with these situations necessitate a move away from conventional security practices, toward a small but flexible portfolio of assets to maintain U.S. interests. Thoughtful action is required now if we are to acquire the capabilities, tools, systems, and institutions needed to meet U.S. national security requirements as they evolve with the emerging stresses and shifts of climate change.

  12. Climate and hydrological uncertainties in projections of flood and low-flows in France

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sauquet, E.; Vidal, J.-P.; Perrin, C.; Bourgin, P.-Y.; Chauveau, M.; Chazot, S.

    2012-04-01

    Changes in river flows are associated with different types of uncertainties, due to an imperfect knowledge of both future climate and rainfall-runoff processes. Due to computational constraints, impact and adaptation studies unfortunately cannot always afford to perform a detailed analysis of all these uncertainties. In that case, the modelling efforts have to focus on the most relevant source of uncertainty in order to provide the best estimate of the overall uncertainty. As part of the national Explore2070 project, the present study thus aims at assessing the hierarchy of uncertainties in changes on river flow extremes at the scale of France. Amongst all possible sources of uncertainties, two are here considered: (1) the uncertainty in General Circulation Model (GCM) configuration, with 7 different models that adequately sample the range of changes as projected by the GCMs used in the IPCC AR4 over France, and (2) the uncertainty in hydrological model structure, with 2 quite different models: GR4J (Perrin et al., 2003), a lumped conceptual model, and Isba-Modcou (Habets et al., 2008), a suite of a land surface scheme and a distributed hydrogeological model. The hydrological models have been run at more than 1500 locations in France over the 1961-1990 baseline period with forcings from both the Safran near-surface atmospheric reanalysis (Vidal et al., 2010) and the GCM control runs downscaled with a weather type method (Boé et al., 2006), and over the 2046-2065 period with forcings from all downscaled GCM runs under the A1B emissions scenario. Various high flow indices (annual maximum daily flow with return period of 10 and 20 years, the daily flow value exceeded 10% of the time) and low flow indices (annual minimum monthly flow with a 5-year return period, annual minimum 10-day mean flow with a 2-year return period, the daily flow value exceeded 95% of the time) as well as seasonality indices have been computed for both periods. An analysis of variance has been

  13. Assessment of adaptation measures to high-mountain risks in Switzerland under climate uncertainties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muccione, Veruska; Lontzek, Thomas; Huggel, Christian; Ott, Philipp; Salzmann, Nadine

    2015-04-01

    The economic evaluation of different adaptation options is important to support policy-makers that need to set priorities in the decision-making process. However, the decision-making process faces considerable uncertainties regarding current and projected climate impacts. First, physical climate and related impact systems are highly complex and not fully understood. Second, the further we look into the future, the more important the emission pathways become, with effects on the frequency and severity of climate impacts. Decision on adaptation measures taken today and in the future must be able to adequately consider the uncertainties originating from the different sources. Decisions are not taken in a vacuum but always in the context of specific social, economic, institutional and political conditions. Decision finding processes strongly depend on the socio-political system and usually have evolved over some time. Finding and taking decisions in the respective socio-political and economic context multiplies the uncertainty challenge. Our presumption is that a sound assessment of the different adaptation options in Switzerland under uncertainty necessitates formulating and solving a dynamic, stochastic optimization problem. Economic optimization models in the field of climate change are not new. Typically, such models are applied for global-scale studies but barely for local-scale problems. In this analysis, we considered the case of the Guttannen-Grimsel Valley, situated in the Swiss Bernese Alps. The alpine community has been affected by high-magnitude, high-frequency debris flows that started in 2009 and were historically unprecendented. They were related to thaw of permafrost in the rock slopes of Ritzlihorn and repeated rock fall events that accumulated at the debris fan and formed a sediment source for debris flows and were transported downvalley. An important transit road, a trans-European gas pipeline and settlements were severely affected and partly

  14. Uncertainty in project phases: A framework for organisational change management

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kreye, Melanie; Balangalibun, Sarah

    2015-01-01

    Uncertainty is an integral challenge when managing organisational change projects (OCPs). Current literature highlights the importance of uncertainty; however, falls short of giving insights into the nature of uncertainty and suggestions for managing it. Specifically, no insights exist on how...... in the early stage of the change project but was delayed until later phases. Furthermore, the sources of uncertainty were found to be predominantly within the organisation that initiated the change project and connected to the project scope. Based on these findings, propositions for future research are defined...

  15. Climate change and fuel poverty

    OpenAIRE

    Simon Dresner; Paul Ekins

    2005-01-01

    The research examined the possible effects of rapid climate change on fuel poverty (needing to spend more than 10% of income to maintain a satisfactory level of warmth and other energy services in the home). One particular concern was the prospect that there might be a shutting off of the Gulf Stream, which warms Britain and the rest of north-western Europe. Computer simulations of the climate indicate that shutting down the Gulf Stream would cool England by about 3°C. Climate is not the only...

  16. Reporting the climate change crisis

    OpenAIRE

    Carvalho, Anabela

    2010-01-01

    Climate change is one of the most serious threats that humankind will have to deal with in the coming decades. There is every indication that it will engender a significant upheaval in the climate patterns of the world regions, with corresponding impacts on agriculture, ecosystems and human health. This main entail unpredictable weather events, like storms and tornados, while posing significant risks for human security, destruction of housing and economic structures, and floodi...

  17. Climate change adaptation in Ethiopia

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Weldegebriel, Zerihun Berhane; Prowse, Martin

    Ethiopia is vulnerable to climate change due to its limited development and dependence on agriculture. Social protection schemes like the Productive Safety Net Programme (PSNP) can play a positive role in promoting livelihoods and enhancing households’ risk management. This article examines......, they suggest the PSNP may not be helping smallholders diversify income sources in a positive manner for climate adaptation. The article concludes by arguing for further investigation of the PSNP’s influence on smallholders’ adaptation strategies....

  18. Invasive species and climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Middleton, Beth A.

    2006-01-01

    Invasive species challenge managers in their work of conserving and managing natural areas and are one of the most serious problems these managers face. Because invasive species are likely to spread in response to changes in climate, managers may need to change their approaches to invasive species management accordingly.

  19. Climate Change: Meeting the Challenge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chance, Paul; Heward, William L.

    2010-01-01

    In "Climate Change: Meeting the Challenge," we conclude the special section by assuming that you have been persuaded by Thompson's paper or other evidence that global warming is real and poses a threat that must be dealt with, and that for now the only way to deal with it is by changing behavior. Then we ask what you, as behavior analysts, can do…

  20. Climate Change and Oil Depletion

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2 atmospheric content and of the average earth surface temperature are being considered to be interrelated. Carbon dioxide, water vapour and clouds all act as greenhouse forcing agents; cloud cover on account of its high solar reflectivity also acts as a direct cooling agent. Aerosols are of great importance in the processes of cloud formation and in precipitation initiation, thereby affecting the hydrological cycle; they also exhibit radiative forcing properties both direct and indirect, by the way of the clouds, either positive or negative, according to their particular composition. These particular influences are not yet well known and not yet properly incorporated in the simulations of climate scenarios adopted by the IPCC. And uncertainty brackets are still rather large. Notwithstanding, the results of these still incomplete climate scenarios have been taken as enough scientific evidence to decide upon imposing limits to greenhouse gas emissions. The European Union has already approved an European Climate Change Programme and took the political initiative in the Marrakech COP of the UNFCCC in November 2001, to the effect of the implementation of the Kyoto Protocol (1997). This is a political option which, besides setting emissions targets and energy policy terms of reference, also sets emission taxes and opens a new financial market for the trade of emission rights or permits. Evidence for the actual strain put upon the fossil energy supply is rather stronger than the evidence for anthropogenic climate changes. Rather more attention should be drawn to the supply of alternative energy sources, to the development of new energy carriers, to the improvement of technologies of energy conversion and storage as well as to the rationalization and moderation of demand at end use, so that a severe fossil energy supply crises might be avoided. In doing so, environmental and climatic consequences of any kind due to the rising worldwide level of energy demand would be

  1. Three eras of climate change

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Huq, Saleemul; Toulmin, Camilla

    2006-10-15

    Climate change as a global challenge has evolved through a series of stages in the last few decades. We are now on the brink of a new era which will see the terms of the debate shift once again. The different eras are characterised by the scientific evidence, public perceptions, responses and engagement of different groups to address the problem. In the first era, from the late 1980s to 2000, climate change was seen as an “environmental” problem to do with prevention of future impacts on the planet's climate systems over the next fifty to hundred years, through reductions in emissions of greenhouse gases, known as “mitigation”. The second era can be said to have started around the turn of the millennium, with the recognition that there will be some unavoidable impacts from climate change in the near term (over the next decade or two). These impacts must be coped with through “adaptation”, as well as mitigation, to prevent much more severe and possibly catastrophic impacts in the longer term. It has become clear that many of the impacts of climate change in the near term are likely to fall on the poorest countries and communities. The third era, which we are just about to enter, will see the issue change from tackling an environmental or development problem to a question of “global justice”. It will engage with a much wider array of citizens from around the world than previous eras.

  2. Dislocated interests and climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Steven J.; Diffenbaugh, Noah

    2016-06-01

    The predicted effects of climate change on surface temperatures are now emergent and quantifiable. The recent letter by Hansen and Sato (2016 Environ. Res. Lett. 11 034009) adds to a growing number of studies showing that warming over the past four decades has shifted the distribution of temperatures higher almost everywhere, with the largest relative effects on summer temperatures in developing regions such as Africa, South America, southeast Asia, and the Middle East (e.g., Diffenbaugh and Scherer 2011 Clim. Change 107 615-24 Anderson 2011 Clim. Change 108 581; Mahlstein et al 2012 Geophys. Res. Lett. 39 L21711). Hansen and Sato emphasize that although these regions are warming disproportionately, their role in causing climate change—measured by cumulative historical CO2 emissions produced—is small compared to the US and Europe, where the relative change in temperatures has been less. This spatial and temporal mismatch of climate change impacts and the burning of fossil fuels is a critical dislocation of interests that, as the authors note, has ‘substantial implications for global energy and climate policies.’ Here, we place Hansen and Sato’s ‘national responsibilities’ into a broader conceptual framework of problematically dislocated interests, and briefly discuss the related challenges for global climate mitigation efforts.

  3. Uncertainty in wind climate parameters and their influence on wind turbine fatigue loads

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Toft, Henrik Stensgaard; Svenningsen, Lasse; Sørensen, John Dalsgaard;

    2016-01-01

    Highlights • Probabilistic framework for reliability assessment of site specific wind turbines. • Uncertainty in wind climate parameters propagated to structural loads directly. • Sensitivity analysis to estimate wind climate parameters influence on reliability.......Highlights • Probabilistic framework for reliability assessment of site specific wind turbines. • Uncertainty in wind climate parameters propagated to structural loads directly. • Sensitivity analysis to estimate wind climate parameters influence on reliability....

  4. Building an ensemble of climate scenarios for decision-making in hydrology: benefits, pitfalls and uncertainties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braun, Marco; Chaumont, Diane

    2013-04-01

    Using climate model output to explore climate change impacts on hydrology requires several considerations, choices and methods in the post treatment of the datasets. In the effort of producing a comprehensive data base of climate change scenarios for over 300 watersheds in the Canadian province of Québec, a selection of state of the art procedures were applied to an ensemble comprising 87 climate simulations. The climate data ensemble is based on global climate simulations from the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project - Phase 3 (CMIP3) and regional climate simulations from the North American Regional Climate Change Assessment Program (NARCCAP) and operational simulations produced at Ouranos. Information on the response of hydrological systems to changing climate conditions can be derived by linking climate simulations with hydrological models. However, the direct use of raw climate model output variables as drivers for hydrological models is limited by issues such as spatial resolution and the calibration of hydro models with observations. Methods for downscaling and bias correcting the data are required to achieve seamless integration of climate simulations with hydro models. The effects on the results of four different approaches to data post processing were explored and compared. We present the lessons learned from building the largest data base yet for multiple stakeholders in the hydro power and water management sector in Québec putting an emphasis on the benefits and pitfalls in choosing simulations, extracting the data, performing bias corrections and documenting the results. A discussion of the sources and significance of uncertainties in the data will also be included. The climatological data base was subsequently used by the state owned hydro power company Hydro-Québec and the Centre d'expertise hydrique du Québec (CEHQ), the provincial water authority, to simulate future stream flows and analyse the impacts on hydrological indicators. While this

  5. Modelling Hydrological Consequences of Climate Change-Progress and Challenges

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2005-01-01

    The simulation of hydrological consequences of climate change has received increasing attention from the hydrology and land-surface modelling communities. There have been many studies of climate-change effects on hydrology and water resources which usually consist of three steps: (1) use of general circulation models (GCMs) to provide future global climate scenarios under the effect of increasing greenhouse gases,(2) use of downscaling techniques (both nested regional climate models, RCMs, and statistical methods)for "downscaling" the GCM output to the scales compatible with hydrological models, and (3) use of hydrologic models to simulate the effects of climate change on hydrological regimes at various scales.Great progress has been achieved in all three steps during the past few years, however, large uncertainties still exist in every stage of such study. This paper first reviews the present achievements in this field and then discusses the challenges for future studies of the hydrological impacts of climate change.

  6. Adaptation responses of crops to climate change

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Seino, Hiroshi [National Inst. of Agro-Environmental Sciences, Tsukuba, Ibaraki (Japan)

    1993-12-31

    Appreciable global climatic responses to increasing levels of atmospheric CO{sub 2} and other trace gases are expected to take place over the next 50 to 80 years. Increasing atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases are producing or will produce changes in the climate of the Earth. In particular, numerous efforts of climate modeling project very substantial increase of surface air temperature. In addition to a general warming of the atmosphere, the possibility of increased summer dryness in the continental mid-latitudes has been suggested on the basis of both historical analogues and some General Circulation Model (GCM) studies. There are three types of effect of climatic change on agriculture: (1) the physiological (direct) effect of elevated levels of atmospheric CO{sub 2} on crop plants and weeds, (2) the effect of changes in parameters of climate (e.g., temperature, precipitation, and solar radiation) on plants and animals, and (3) the effects of climate-related rises in sea-level on land use. The direct effects of elevated CO{sub 2} are on photosynthesis and respiration and thereby on growth, and there are additional effects of increased CO{sub 2} on development, yield quality and stomatal aperture and water use. A doubling of CO{sub 2} increases the instantaneous photosynthetic rate by 30% to 100%, depending on the other environmental conditions, and reduce water requirements of plants by reducing transpiration (per unit leaf area) through reductions in stomatal aperture. A doubling of CO{sub 2} causes partial stomatal closure on both C{sub 3} and C{sub 4} plants (approximately a 40% decrease in aperture). In many experiments this results in reductions of transpiration of about 23% to 46%. However. there is considerable uncertainty over the magnitude of this in natural conditions.

  7. Assessing urban climate change resilience

    Science.gov (United States)

    Voskaki, Asimina

    2016-04-01

    Recent extreme weather events demonstrate that many urban environments are vulnerable to climate change impacts and as a consequence designing systems for future climate seems to be an important parameter in sustainable urban planning. The focus of this research is the development of a theoretical framework to assess climate change resilience in urban environments. The methodological approach used encompasses literature review, detailed analysis, and combination of data, and the development of a series of evaluation criteria, which are further analyzed into a list of measures. The choice of the specific measures is based upon various environmental, urban planning parameters, social, economic and institutional features taking into consideration key vulnerabilities and risk associated with climate change. The selected criteria are further prioritized to incorporate into the evaluation framework the level of importance of different issues towards a climate change resilient city. The framework could support decision making as regards the ability of an urban system to adapt. In addition it gives information on the level of adaptation, outlining barriers to sustainable urban planning and pointing out drivers for action and reaction.

  8. Market Strategies for Climate Change

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kolk, A.; Pinkse, J. [Business School, University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam (Netherlands)

    2004-06-01

    The issue of climate change has attracted increasing business attention in the past decade. Whereas companies initially aimed primarily at influencing the policy debate, corporate strategies increasingly include economic responses. Existing classifications for climate change strategies however still reflect the political, non-market components. Using empirical information from the largest multinational companies worldwide, this article examines current market responses, focusing on the drivers (threats and opportunities) and the actions being taken by companies to address climate change. It also develops a typology of climate strategies that addresses the market dimensions, covering both the aim (strategic intent) and the degree of cooperation (form of organisation). The aim turns out to be either innovation or compensation, while the organisational arrangements to reach this objective can be oriented at the company level (internal), at companies' own supply chain (vertical) or at cooperation with other companies (competitors or companies in other sectors - horizontal). The typology can assist managers in deciding about the strategic option(s) they want to choose regarding climate change, also based on the insights offered by the paper about the current state of activities of other companies worldwide.

  9. Playing the odds: Climate change risks transform utility plans

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tennis, M.W. [Union of Concerned Scientists, Cambridge, MA (United States)

    1996-12-31

    Cost and uncertainty analyses conducted jointly by the Union of Concerned Scientists and World Resource Institute regarding climate change policy and regulations are presented in this paper. A utility model was developed to help determine whether action was required in the near term by the electric industry and policy makers to reduce carbon emissions. The cost and carbon dioxide emissions resulting from four case studies are tabulated. Analysis of the results shows that explicit consideration of climate change uncertainty can provide an economic justification for investing in low carbon resources at above market costs. A number of specific recommendations are made in the paper. 2 figs., 3 tabs.

  10. Quantification of structural uncertainty in climate data records from GPS radio occultation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. K. Steiner

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Global Positioning System (GPS radio occultation (RO provides continuous observations of the Earth's atmosphere since 2001 with global coverage, all-weather capability, and high accuracy and vertical resolution in the upper troposphere and lower stratosphere (UTLS. Precise time measurements enable long-term stability but careful processing is needed. Here we provide climate-oriented atmospheric scientists with multicenter-based results on the long-term stability of RO climatological fields for trend studies. We quantify the structural uncertainty of atmospheric trends estimated from the RO record, which arises from current processing schemes of six international RO processing centers, DMI Copenhagen, EUM Darmstadt, GFZ Potsdam, JPL Pasadena, UCAR Boulder, and WEGC Graz. Monthly-mean zonal-mean fields of bending angle, refractivity, dry pressure, dry geopotential height, and dry temperature from the CHAMP mission are compared for September 2001 to September 2008. We find that structural uncertainty is lowest in the tropics and mid-latitudes (50° S to 50° N from 8 km to 25 km for all inspected RO variables. In this region, the structural uncertainty in trends over 7 yr is <0.03% f or bending angle, refractivity, and pressure, <3 m for geopotential height of pressure levels, and <0.06 K for temperature; low enough for detecting a climate change signal within about a decade. Larger structural uncertainty above about 25 km and at high latitudes is attributable to differences in the processing schemes, which undergo continuous improvements. Though current use of RO for reliable climate trend assessment is bound to 50° S to 50° N, our results show that quality, consistency, and reproducibility are favorable in the UTLS for the establishment of a climate benchmark record.

  11. Climate engineering research : A precautionary response to climate change?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Reynolds, J.L.; Fleurke, F.M.

    2013-01-01

    In the face of dire forecasts for anthropogenic climate change, climate engineering is increasingly discussed as a possible additional set of responses to reduce climate change’s threat. These proposals have been controversial, in part because they – like climate change itself – pose uncertain risks

  12. Climate Change Impacts on Central China and Adaptation Measures

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    REN Yong-Jian; CUI Jiang-Xue; WAN Su-Qin; LIU Min; CHEN Zheng-Hong; LIAO Yu-Fang; WANG Ji-Jun

    2013-01-01

    In Central China, the obvious climate change has happened along with global warming. Based on the observational analysis, the climate change has significant effects, both positive and negative, in every field within the study area, and with the harmful effects far more prevalent. Under the scenario A1B, it is reported that temperature, precipitation, days of heat waves and extreme precipitation intensity will increase at respective rates of 0.38◦C per decade, 12.6 mm per decade, 6.4 d and 47 mm per decade in the 21st century. It is widely believed that these climate changes in the future will result in some apparent impacts on agro-ecosystems, water resources, wetland ecosystem, forest ecosystem, human health, energy sectors and other sensitive fields in Central China. Due to the limited scientific knowledge and researches, there are still some shortages in the climate change assessment methodologies and many uncertainties in the climate prediction results. Therefore, it is urgent and essential to increase the studies of the regional climate change adaptation, extend the research fields, and enhance the studies in the extreme weather and climate events to reduce the uncertainties of the climate change assessments.

  13. Drought, Climate Change and Potential Agricultural Productivity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheffield, J.; Herrera-Estrada, J. E.; Caylor, K. K.; Wood, E. F.

    2011-12-01

    climate change. Whether these events are exceptional in the context of the historic record is a key question in detecting a climate change signal and evaluating the potential future impacts. However, a detectable signal is generally masked by uncertainties in the data, particularly for precipitation, but also the impact of changes in evapotranspiration, and its driving radiative and aerodynamic controls. We also explore the potential future impacts of global warming on drought and agricultural productivity over the next 30-100 years using future climate data from downscaled and bias corrected climate model data. This indicates that drying in marginal climates coupled with increased evaporation may have the largest impact on drought occurrence and agricultural productivity.

  14. Position Statement On Climate Change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-05-01

    The North Carolina Environmental Justice Network (NCEJN), a coalition of grassroots organizations, developed a statement to explain our environmental justice perspective on climate change to predominantly white environmental groups that seek to partner with us. NCEJN opposes strategies that reduce greenhouse emissions while maintaining or magnifying existing social, economic, and environmental injustices. Wealthy communities that consume a disproportionate share of resources avoid the most severe consequences of their consumption by displacing pollution on communities of color and low income. Therefore, the success of climate change activism depends on building an inclusive movement based on principles of racial, social and economic justice, and self-determination for all people.

  15. Position Statement On Climate Change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-05-01

    The North Carolina Environmental Justice Network (NCEJN), a coalition of grassroots organizations, developed a statement to explain our environmental justice perspective on climate change to predominantly white environmental groups that seek to partner with us. NCEJN opposes strategies that reduce greenhouse emissions while maintaining or magnifying existing social, economic, and environmental injustices. Wealthy communities that consume a disproportionate share of resources avoid the most severe consequences of their consumption by displacing pollution on communities of color and low income. Therefore, the success of climate change activism depends on building an inclusive movement based on principles of racial, social and economic justice, and self-determination for all people. PMID:26920851

  16. Changing habits, changing climate : a foundation analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Enright, W. [Canadian Inst. of Child Health, Ottawa, ON (Canada)

    2001-03-01

    If Canada intends to meet its greenhouse gas reduction target of 6 per cent below 1990 levels, a fundamental shift in energy use by Canadians is required. The health sector will also be required to change. Global climate change is expected to affect regions differently, some might get wetter, some might get warmer, and others still might get colder. Climate changes will influence a number of health determinants: the geographical range of disease organisms and vectors; temperature extremes and violent weather events; air, food and water quality; the stability of ecosystems. There is a requirement to strongly regulate the emissions of carbon dioxide, methane and other greenhouse gases to limit health risks. Increased air pollution could negatively affect large numbers of people, especially asthma sufferers and people suffering from chronic respiratory ailments and cardiovascular diseases. Changes in precipitation and temperature could increase insect-borne diseases. Water sources could be badly affected by drought, flooding or increased glacial runoff. The thinning of the ozone layer could result in additional skin cancers, impaired vision and other diseases. The document explores the various impacts resulting from climate change. A chapter is devoted to each topic: air pollution, temperature extremes, extreme weather events, vector borne diseases, drought and increased evaporation, food supply and ecosystem range, sea level rise, stratospheric ozone depletion and describes the health impacts. In addition, a chapter deals with aboriginal communities. The topic of environmental refugees is discussed, followed by an historical perspective into climate change policy in Canada. The author concludes with adaptation measures. Further emphasis must be placed on priority topics such as the estimation of future emissions and modelling of climate processes. refs., tabs., figs.

  17. Changing habits, changing climate : a foundation analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    If Canada intends to meet its greenhouse gas reduction target of 6 per cent below 1990 levels, a fundamental shift in energy use by Canadians is required. The health sector will also be required to change. Global climate change is expected to affect regions differently, some might get wetter, some might get warmer, and others still might get colder. Climate changes will influence a number of health determinants: the geographical range of disease organisms and vectors; temperature extremes and violent weather events; air, food and water quality; the stability of ecosystems. There is a requirement to strongly regulate the emissions of carbon dioxide, methane and other greenhouse gases to limit health risks. Increased air pollution could negatively affect large numbers of people, especially asthma sufferers and people suffering from chronic respiratory ailments and cardiovascular diseases. Changes in precipitation and temperature could increase insect-borne diseases. Water sources could be badly affected by drought, flooding or increased glacial runoff. The thinning of the ozone layer could result in additional skin cancers, impaired vision and other diseases. The document explores the various impacts resulting from climate change. A chapter is devoted to each topic: air pollution, temperature extremes, extreme weather events, vector borne diseases, drought and increased evaporation, food supply and ecosystem range, sea level rise, stratospheric ozone depletion and describes the health impacts. In addition, a chapter deals with aboriginal communities. The topic of environmental refugees is discussed, followed by an historical perspective into climate change policy in Canada. The author concludes with adaptation measures. Further emphasis must be placed on priority topics such as the estimation of future emissions and modelling of climate processes. refs., tabs., figs

  18. The adaptation to climate change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The authors address the issue of adaptation to climate change. They first address the physical aspects related to this issue: scenarios of temperature evolution, main possible impacts. Then, they address the social impacts related to climate risks, and the adaptation strategies which aim at reducing the exposure and vulnerability of human societies, or at increasing their resilience. Some examples of losses of human lives and of economic damages due to recent catastrophes related to climate change are evoked. The authors address the international framework, the emergence of an international regime on climate, the quite recent emergence of adaptation within international negotiations in 2001, the emergence of the idea of a support to developing countries. National and local policies are presented in the next chapter (in the European Union, the Netherlands which are faced with the issue of sea level rise, programs in developing countries) and their limitations are also outlined. The next chapter addresses the adaptation actions performed by private actors (enterprises, households, associations, civil society, and so on) with example of vulnerability, and adaptation opportunities and possibilities in some specific sectors. The last chapter presents a typology of actions of adaptation, indicators of adaptation to climate change, and examples of mistaken adaptation

  19. Case grows for climate change

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hileman, B.

    1999-08-09

    In the four years since the IPCC stated that 'the balance of evidence suggests a discernible human influence on global climate', evidence for anomalous warming has become more compelling, and as a result scientists have become more concerned that human-induced climate change has already arrived. The article summarises recent extra evidence on global temperatures, carbon dioxide measurements, ice shelf breakup, coral bleaching, unstable climates and improved climate models. At the time of the Kyoto conference, the US became keen on the idea that enhancing forest and soil carbon sequestration was a good way to offset emissions reduction targets. Congress is however under the opinion on that the Kyoto protocol presents a threat to the US economy, and senate is very unlikely to ratify the protocol during the Clinton Administration. The debate as to whether the US government should mandate major emission reduction or wait for more scientific certainty may continue for a number of years, but, growing concern of scientists and the public for the harmful effects of climate change may cause a change. 4 figs., 8 photos.

  20. Maritime Archaeology and Climate Change: An Invitation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wright, Jeneva

    2016-08-01

    Maritime archaeology has a tremendous capacity to engage with climate change science. The field is uniquely positioned to support climate change research and the understanding of past human adaptations to climate change. Maritime archaeological data can inform on environmental shifts and submerged sites can serve as an important avenue for public outreach by mobilizing public interest and action towards understanding the impacts of climate change. Despite these opportunities, maritime archaeologists have not fully developed a role within climate change science and policy. Moreover, submerged site vulnerabilities stemming from climate change impacts are not yet well understood. This article discusses potential climate change threats to maritime archaeological resources, the challenges confronting cultural resource managers, and the contributions maritime archaeology can offer to climate change science. Maritime archaeology's ability to both support and benefit from climate change science argues its relevant and valuable place in the global climate change dialogue, but also reveals the necessity for our heightened engagement.

  1. Climatic servitude: climate change, business and politics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This book is together a contemporary history book and a global dossier about a topic of prime importance in our civilization. It treats of the history of science, of ideas and events put in the modern civilization context, of science situation and scientific controversies, of the media aspects, of carbon economy and its related business, of Al Gore's and Maurice Strong's biographies, and finally, it makes a critical geopolitical analysis and makes proposals for a renovated ecology. In the conclusion, the author shows how climate change has become the hobbyhorse of a new thinking trend, namely the New World Order, aiming at conducting people to the acceptance of constraining policies encompassing the energy security of nations, new taxes, a worldwide economic disruption, the limitation of the World's population, and a World governance supported by the United Nations and not constrained by classical democratic rules. (J.S.)

  2. Urban drainage design and climate change adaptation decision making

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Qianqian Zhou

    2012-10-15

    The emphasis of this PhD thesis is flood protection in the context of pluvial flooding by investigating new principles and approaches for assessment of urban drainage adaptation measures under climate change impacts. The thesis describes a new framework for design and analysis of urban drainage that accurately assesses hazards and vulnerabilities of urban areas and quantifies the present and future risks based on projections of climate change and city development. Furthermore, this framework can be utilized to identify cost-effective measures that can reduce the overall flood risk to an acceptable level considering both costs and benefits of adaptation. The framework is mainly based on a utilitarian approach that studies urban drainage adaptation solutions from a socio-economic point of view. The methodologies involve the state-of-the-art flood inundation modelling, risk assessment tools, socio-economic analysis tools, city planning, and uncertainty analysis. The thesis has explored several limitations of the current design practice of urban drainage. To further supplement and develop the common practice, a systemic and integrated framework is proposed by incorporating three research areas: (i) risk-based economic approaches for assessment of climate adaptation design, (ii) uncertainty analysis of climate adaptation assessment and (iii) reframing the assessment approaches by incorporating additional benefits and costs of adaptation alternatives. To strategically provide a functional performance of urban drainage systems, a risk-based economic approach is developed to take into account the impacts of all probable floods in terms of their probabilities and consequences (e.g. extents of floods, costing of damage). It is found that this approach contributes to a better understanding of the contributions of differ