Recent Science Highlights
Datasets for Indices of Climate Extremes 31.01.2013
The CLIMDEX Project aims to produce a suite of in situ and gridded land-based global datasets of indices representing the more extreme aspects of climate. Indices are derived from daily temperature and precipitation data using the definitions recommended by the CCl/CLIVAR/JCOMM Expert Team on Climate Change Detection and Indices (ETCCDI). The project also aims to develop software tools to allow users to access the resulting datasets via a Web interface... for more information click here
CORDEX Has 13 Domains... and Growing 10.01.2013
Find out more about CORDEX development and progress by visiting the new and informative webpage:
The CORDEX flyer,
recently published, provides description of Regional Climate Downscaling and its use in climate change adaptation and impact assessment... read more.
An International Conference on CORDEX will take place on 4-7 November 2013 in Brussels, Belgium. Read the announcement
Assessment of the Cloud Data Products for Climate 05.12.2012
The results of the GEWEX evaluation of the overall quality of the global, long-term cloud data products have been published recently in a report. The need of periodic assessments is a requirement for long-term, consistent data products. It is imperative that the long-term products be compared with more recent state of the art products to assess not only their fidelity, but their quality in light of increasingly accurate measurements... read the report
U.S. National Academies of Sciences Releases Report on Arctic Sea Ice Predictions 26.11.2012
The report "Seasonal-to-Decadal Predictions of Arctic Sea Ice: Challenges and Strategies" finds that in the past six summers, sea ice cover has shrunk to its smallest in three decades. The composition of the ice is also changing, now containing a higher fraction of thin first-year ice instead of thicker multi-year ice.... read more
How Does Science Support Climate Services? 22.11.2012
The second International Conference on Climate Services held in Brussels, Bergium, in September 2012 explored the wide set of issues, opportunities and challenges around the climate services enterprise concept. The agenda included the contribution of international research programmes.... see the conference report and presentations
Climate and Vector-Borne Diseases Symposium in Africa 18.11.2012
Readily accessible, high quality climate data can be extremely useful to health planners, as they can help understand current distributions of some diseases – notably those involving a biological vector - and are fundamental to the accurate forecasting of future outbreaks. The forthcoming 4th Annual East African Community Health & Scientific Conference in Kigali, Rwanda, brings together researchers at the cutting edge of efforts to understand the relationships between climate and vector-borne diseases, in Africa... read more
ACSYS Decade and Beyond: the Book 23.10.2012
A new book edited by Peter Lemke and Hans-Werner Jacobi, Hans-Werner on the history of the WCRP Arctic System Study (ACSYS) and ways forward has just been released. The ACSYS project was fundamental in raising the awareness of the role of the Arctic in the global climate system.... read more
BALTEX Celebrates 20 Years of Accomplishments 16.10.2012
The Baltic Sea Experiment (BALTEX) was founded in 1993 to study the hydrological cycle and energy fluxes between the atmosphere and the land surface, including rivers and lakes. BALTEX is the only GEWEX Regional Hydroclimate Project (RHP) with an oceanographic focus on the Baltic Sea... read more
Free e-Textbook on River Basins and Change 10.10.2012
The Global Water System Project has published a free e-book that brings together the major contributions to the conference "The Global Dimensions of Changes in River Basins: Threats, Linkages and Adaptations" held in December 2010. This publication aims to reach out to all graduate students whose curriculum includes water related topics and to assist young scientists and professionals from different water related academic disciplines... download the book.
New Accurate Method for Hurricane Activity Forecast 26.09.2012
Researchers from North Carolina State University, including Dr. Fredrick Semazzi (WCRP JSC member), have developed a new method for forecasting seasonal hurricane activity that is 15 percent more accurate than previous techniques... read more
YOTC: a "Year" of Achievements 19.09.2012
Find out more about the "Year" Of Tropical Convection (YOTC) - a coordinated research programme jointly proposed by WCRP and THORPEX/WWRP involving observing, modeling and forecasting of organized tropical convection around the world - by reading the three articles in the current issue of BAMS
25-Year Global Temperature Data Record 11.09.2012
The launch of the Special Sensor Microwave/Imager (SSM/I) on board the Defence Meteorological Satellite Program’s (DMSP) F08 spacecraft in June of 1987 marked the beginning of a nearly continuous 25-year record of high-quality global window-channel microwave observations. Since that first launch, a total of six SSM/I sensors and three of the next generation Special Sensor Microwave Imager Sounders (SSMIS) have flown on board the polar-orbiting DMSP satellite series... read more
Thickness changes of Himalayan Glaciers 24.08.2012
In a study published in Nature, scientists assembled new datasets from Earth-observing satellites and found that glaciers in the Hindu Kush–Karakoram– Himalaya region (HKKH) lost 12 gigatonnes per year over the period 2003–08, much faster than previously reported.... read more
Scenarios for Waves Heights in the Bay of Biscay 03.08.2012
Using dynamical downscaling, a group of french scientists produced a data set of wave conditions in the Bay of Biscay, France, under three future greenhouse gases emission scenarios. The authors, who are involved in WCRP/CORDEX, identified a general decrease in wave heights and concluded that climate change will most likely impact the costal dynamics and the long shore sediment flux... read more
The influence of Climate Change in the Extreme Events of 2011 16.07.2012
A collection of articles published in the July issue of BAMS examines some of the specific extreme weather or climate events of 2011. The articles show the importance of understanding the interplay of natural climate variability and anthropogenic climate change on the extreme events occurrence.... read the contributions
A Top-Down Approach 09.07.2012
The emerging datasets of stratospheric-resolving models in the CMIP5 and the Resolving Historical Forecast Project (Strat-HFP) are a major step forward in quantifying the role of the stratosphere in the observed record and future climate change. The SPARC DynVar activity is coordinating the investigation of this models... read the article in BAMS
ENSO Predictions are Improving 04.07.2012
A gradual improvement of ENSO predictions in the last decade is proved in a recent article appeared in BAMS (May issue). The authors of the article verified the real-time ENSO prediction skills in 20 models (12 dynamical and 8 statistical). The most comprehensive dynamical models are found to be better able to predict ENSO than simpler dynamical models or statistical models... read more
Subseasonal - Seasonal Predictability: Key in Weather and Climate Services 29.06.2012
Prof. Julia Slingo, chief scientist at UKMET and member of the WCRP Joint Scientific Committee, gave a compelling presentation on the need for a subseasonal prediction project. She provided evidences that ocean sea surface temperatures, stratospheric variability, solar variability and land surface conditions are potential sources of predictability at subseasonal and seasonal timescale. See her presentation
ESA Public Release of 30-years Soil Moisture Data 22.06.2012
The Climate Change Initiative (CCI) Soil Moisture project is proud to announce the public release of the Essential Climate Variables (ECV) soil moisture data set. The Soil Moisture CCI is part of the ESA programme on global monitoring if ECVs. The global soil moisture data set has been generated using active and passive microwave spaceborne instruments and covers the 32 year period from 1978 to 2010.... read more
The WCRP Geoengineering Model Intercomparison Project (GeoMIP) 01.06.2012
GeoMIP is an endorsed community coordinated project, as designated by the WCRP Working Group on Coupled Modeling (WGCM). GeoMIP attempts to address the question, "What are the expected climate effects of geoengineering?". It serves to organize geoengineering simulations by prescribing the experiments that are synergistically built upon the CMIP5 experiment framework. The first suite of GeoMIP experiments concentrates on Solar Radiation Management (SRM) schemes.... read more
U.S. Earth-Observing Vision at Risk 02.05.2012
A recent report from the U.S. National Academies' National Research Council (NRC) cautions that the U.S. Earth observation programme continues to deteriorate. Aging satellites are being replaced too slowly, the report concludes, and by 2020 the country may have only 25% of its current observing capacity. A. Busalacchi, chair of the WCRP Joint Scientific Committee, is a member of the NRC committee issuing the report that urges for an overarching national strategy of Earth Observation... read more
Developing a Global Drought Information System (GDIS) 23.04.2012
From 11 to 13 April 2012, the WCRP Global Drought Information System (GDIS) Workshop took place on the premises of ESA-ESRIN in Frascati, Italy. This workshop focused on the steps necessary to develop a GDIS that builds upon the extensive world-wide investments that have already been made in developing drought monitoring, drought risk management, and short term climate prediction capabilities... read the workshop outcomes.
The Global scientific and end-user communities found a place to meet and listen to each other´s stories.... read the blog
The Paleoclimate Modelling Contribution to CMIP5 19.03.2012
The Paleoclimate Modelling Intercomparison Project (PMIP) focuses on the analysis of general circulation models, specifically to test the models for future climate projections. The paleoclimate simulations in CMIP5 also offer the opportunity to use the same models in different configurations and thereby to increase our understanding of the relationship between climate feedbacks, or climate variability and teleconnections, with the background climate change... read more
Observe, Understand and Predict Changes in the Arctic Sea Ice 14.03.2012
The Arctic Sea Ice Working Group of the
WCRP Climate and Cryosphere Project held a workshop at the National Snow and Ice Data Center to discuss ways to improve our ability to observe, understand, and predict changes in Arctic sea ice through internationally coordinated activities. More than 40 researchers from 10 countries attended the workshop. The group included field experimentalists, remote sensing specialists, and sea ice and climate modelers.... read more
CORDEX-Africa Successful Simulations of Precipitation Climatology 12.03.2012
The first set of simulations in the CORDEX-Africa project have been analized with the aim to assess the ability of ten regional climate models (RCMs) to reproduce the precipitation climatology over Africa. In a paper published in Journal of Climate, the scientists involved -including the Director of WCRP, Dr. G. Asrar- show that all RCMs simulate the season mean and annual cycle quite accurately. Based on this performance, they concluded that the present set of RCMs can be used to provide useful information on climate projections over Africa... read more
Exploring the Skills for Decadal Prediction 12.03.2012
A series of experiments with a multi-model ensemble of four coupled ocean-atmosphere models concluded that the main source of skill in forecasting temperature at decadal time scales is the trend forced by rising greenhouse gas concentrations. The authors of this work that has been recently published in Clim. Dyn., argue that the ocean initial state contributed to skill in some regions, but variations in boundary forcings such as aerosols are as important in decadal forecasting.... read more
The MedCLIVAR Program and Network 08.03.2012
Climate models indicate that the Mediterranean region is expected to become warmer and drier by the end of the century. To help scientists better understand these changes, the Mediterranean Climate Variability and Predictability (MedCLIVAR) program was established to foster multidisciplinary studies that integrate atmospheric, marine, and terrestrial climate components at time scales ranging from paleoreconstructions to future climate scenarios.... read recent article in EOS
Climate Science and Services 28.02.2012
In a recent paper published in Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability, WCRP Director, Dr G. Asrar, describes the programme strategy and approach for providing tailored climate information in a timely and effective manner on global, regional, and national levels, and in response to the needs of different economic sectors such as agriculture and food production, water resources management, disaster risk management, and human health, energy and transport, among others, is key to the success of the Future Earth and GFCS initiatives... read the article
The Future of Climate Prediction: the Probabilistic Earth-system Simulator 24.02.2012
New scientific arguments in support of the conclusions of the WCRP World Summit on Climate Modelling are presented in a paper by Palmer et al. to appear in the Quart.J.Roy.Meteor.Soc. The authors argue that breakthroughs in improving climate predictions will likely occur within a stochastic framework rather than in the traditional deterministic framework. This support for a pool of human and computational resources amongst climate institutes and for a substantial rationalization of development work towards a very small number of independent Earth-system simulators... read the article
Refining Indices for Monitoring Changes in Extreme Climate Events 05.02.2012
A recent article published in the WIREs Climate Change summarizes the work on refining indices for climate variability and extremes carried out by the CCl/CLIVARE/JCOMM Expert Team on Climate Change Detection and Indices (ETCCDI). The paper describes recent progress in attribution of the changes in gridded indices of extremes that demonstrates human influence on the probability of extremes. The paper also describes model projections of the future and wraps up with a discussion of ongoing efforts to refine indices of extremes as they are being readied to contribute to the IPCC's Fifth Assessment Report... go to the article
Launching the MedCLIVAR Data Archive 23.01.2012
The Steering Committee of MedCLIVAR is inviting the Mediterranean climate research community to submit their data in the long-time archive of climate research data in the World Data Center for Climate (WDCC). The purpose of the MedCLIVAR data archive is to provide long-term preservation (including DOI registration) and easy public access to observational and model datasets for climate diagnostics and impact studies on the Mediterranean region.... read more
WCRP Action Plan on Surface Fluxes 16.01.2012
The WCRP Observation and Assimilation Panel (WOAP) recently published a report on research activities and actions on surface fluxes. It is recognised that surface fluxes are of interest because they represent exchanges across interfaces, and so they should not be considered in isolation from the state variables on both sides of the interface. The report identifies six important topics to be considered for an effective management of surface fluxes research across WCRP and GCOS.... read more
Grants for Students and Young Scientists to attend the Astronautical Congress 12.01.2012
The International Astronautical Federation (IAF) is pleased to announce its 2012 Emerging Space Leaders Grant Programme (formerly known as the Youth Grant Programme) that provides opportunities for students and young professionals to participate the annual International Astronautical Congresses. The individuals selected will also be given the opportunity to participate in other activities held the week prior and during the Congress such as the UN/IAF Workshop and the Space Generation Congress (SGC). Deadline for applications: 1st February 2012.....read more
The "long" way to Climate Services
Richard A. Kerr, science journalist, published an article in the latest issue of Science Magazine on the WCRP Conference in Denver. He argues that scientists are still striving to generate actionable science for use at the regional and local scale as many key speakers pointed to the great challenge of delivering actionable information effectively to users.... read article
Climate Extremes: the IPCC Guide to Manage the Risks 25.11.2011
The IPCC has released a summary of its special report on Managing the Risks of Extreme Events and Disasters to Advance Climate Change Adaptation (SREX). The report evaluates the role of climate change in altering the characteristics of extreme events. The full report will be published in early 2012. Carolina Vera, officer of the WCRP JSC, is one of the drafting authors.
Special Issue on iLeaps-Related Science 21.11.2011
The scientific goal of iLEAPS is to provide understanding how interacting physical, chemical and biological processes transport and transform energy and matter through the land-atmosphere interface. Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics (ACP) and Biogeosciences (BG) have opened a joint special issue on iLeaps-related science... view the submitted articles
A New Global Model Evaluation Project for Understanding and Predicting MJO 07.11.2011
The objective of this project is to characterize, compare and evaluate the heating, moistening and momentum mixing processes associated with the Madden-Julian Oscillation (MJO) that are produced by our global weather and climate models, with a particular focus on their vertical structure. This is a collaborative effort between the Year of Tropical Convection (YOTC) / MJO Task Force and the GEWEX Atmospheric System Study (GASS) .... read more
CORDEX Helping African Villages to Reduce Vulnerability 02.11.2011
The Coordinated Regional Climate Downscaling Experiment (CORDEX), an initiative of the WCRP is now able to render the data from regional climate models to the scale people live in, and decision makers work at. The information will not only help countries but also communities in their efforts to adapt to changing weather patterns, and to tailor their disaster risk reduction plans... read more
Challenges for Sustained Climate Observations 28.10.2011
A recent article in Nature magazine reports on one of the WCRP Conference plenary talks on Sustained Climate Observing System. Kevin Trenberth, chair of GEWEX SSG, told to the WCRP conference attendees in Denver, Colorado, that "We cannot manage what we can't measure,"... read more and see the video interview
WCRP Challenges for Current and Future Research 17.10.2011
One of the main output of the WCRP Open Science Conference are the community position papers. These papers are intended to address current and future research and intellectual challenges that must be tackled by WCRP, and in so doing engage the next generation of scientists who will lead the WCRP over the years and decades ahead. The conference participants strongly encouraged to read these papers and come to the OSC prepared to discuss them at open sessions and/or directly with the authors. Go to the papers
WCRP Monsoon Fact-Sheet 10.10.2011
Thanks to a team of GEWEX and CLIVAR experts, WCRP has published a fact-sheet on the Global Monsoon Systems. This document is meant to provide the state-of-the-art on the understanding of monsoon systems, their predictability and the impact of man-made climate change on the monsoonal systems worldwide... read more
Attribution of Climate-related Events 22.09.2011
In a recent article, the Nature journal features two WCRP Conference plenary speakers (Peter Stott and Kevin Trenberth) on the weather-attribution study. The aim is to create an international system that could assess the changing climate’s influence on weather events almost as soon as they happen or even before they hit. The article mentions the WCRP Open Science Conference and the position paper that Peter Stott and his team are preparing.
Special Issue on Climate and the AMOC 05.07.2011
Deep Sea Research (II) Journal is publishing a special issue on the Climate and the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation. The papers in this issue particularly emphasize how best to observe and monitor the AMOC and present an up-to-date discussion of the international observing program for AMOC... go to the articles
A Comprehensive Book on Global Drought 03.06.2011
Written by J. Sheffield (Uni. Princeton) and E. Wood (ex member of GEWEX SSG), the book provides a broad overview of large scale drought, from historic events and places, this in the context of climate variability and change. It also discuss the developing field of drought monitoring and seasonal forecasting and describe how this is vital for identifying emerging droughts and providing timely warning to help reduce the impacts... more
Strengthening of the Agulhas Leakage and its Impacts in the Climate System 28.04.2011
A study published in a recent issue of the journal Nature suggests an increase in the transport of warm and salty water from the tropical Indian Ocean in to the fresher Atlantic Ocean off the southern tip of Africa. The change is attributed to human-induced climate change and can have a profound implications for the future Earth Climate System. This study was cosponsored by SCOR, WCRP and IAPSO.
Special Issue of Climate Research: Climate Services for Sustainable Development 12.04.2011
This special issue presents results of the Technical Conference on Changing Climate and Demands for Climate Services for Sustainable Development, held in Antalya, Turkey, in February 2010, with sponsorship by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), the World Climate Research Programme (WCRP), the Turkish State Meteorological Service (TSMS) and Météo-France... go to articles
Improving Sub-Seasonal to Seasonal Forecast 01.04.2011
The World Weather Research Programme (WWRP) and WCRP convened a joint workshop in December 2010, to review the current capabilities in sub-seasonal to seasonal prediction and to identify high-priority problems which if addressed successfully would lead to improvements in predictions... read more
AMS Special Issue on West African Monsoon Prediction and Predictability 15.03.2011
Motivated by the considerable amount of research activity done through AMMA, this collection of articles covers several areas relevant to weather prediction in the West African monsoon region including process studies that relate to rainfall, African easterly waves, mesoscale systems and tropical cyclogenesis.
Interaction Between Ozone Depletion and Climate Change 08.03.2011
The WCRP SPARC project, through its Chemistry Climate Model Validation (CCMVal) activity, made a major contribution to the 2010 Ozone Assessment through the coordination and analysis of CCM simulations performed in support of the Assessment. A detailed process oriented evaluation of CCMs using performance metrics, as well as an objective and robust statistical analysis method, were developed as part of the peer-reviewed SPARC CCMVal Report... read more
Human influence on extreme rainfall 27.02.2011
A couple of studies recently published in Nature have demonstrated a direct link between the human induced global warming and the growing intensity of rain and snow in the Northern Hemisphere (NH). One of the study is co-authored by Xuebin Zhang who is the co-chair of the Expert Team on Climate Change Detection and Indices. The article provides evidence that the increasing concentration of greenhouse-gases led to the intensification of heavy precipitation events in NH during the latter half of the 20th century... read the article
New Data Analysis Tools in Support of YoTC 22.02.2011
The goal of the Goddard Giovanni for YoTC project at the NASA Goddard Earth Sciences (GES) and Data Information Services Center, is to facilitate NASA satellite data usage by providing a way the Year of Tropical Convection (YoTC) community can easily read, subset, visualize, access, and harmonize data from multiple space-borne sensors. YoTC is a joint activity of the World Climate Research Programme (WCRP) and the World Weather Research Programme (WWRP)/THORPEX... read more
Ensuring Open and User-Friendly Climate Data Access 18.02.2011
Climate data are dramatically increasing in volume and complexity, creating challenges for both archiving and sharing as well as providing easy access for non scientists. A recent article published in Science, co-authored by the WCRP WGCM co-chairs, discuss the new emerging paradigm in the future of climate data that joins traditional climate research with research on climate adaptation, services, assessment and applications... go to the article
Regional Climate Assessment: the Iberian Peninsula 27.01.2011
The science research network CLIVAR-Spain just published the english version of the study on the Past, Present and Future of the Climate in Spain. The study was presented by the Spanish Ministry of Environment last April 2010 in Madrid. It shows that the local temperature increase since 1975 is 50% higher than the Northern Hemisphere continental average... read the report
WMO ranks 2010 the warmest year on record 25.01.2011
The year 2010 equals records for the warmest year together with 2005 and 1998, according to the World Meteorological Organization. Data received by the WMO show no statistically significant difference between global temperatures in 2010, 2005 and 1998. These statistics are based on data sets maintained by the UK Meteorological Office Hadley Centre/Climatic Research Unit (HadCRU), the U.S. National Climatic Data Center (NCDC), and the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)... read more
Glacial Floods Increasing in a Warmer World 25.01.2011
In a recent article appeared in US Newsweek, Dr. G. Casassa (CliC co-chair) comments on the new cycle of activity in glacial lake outburst flood that is threatening millions of people. Dr. G. Asrar (WCRP Director) urges for early-warning system and adaptation measures to cope with climate-change floods... read the article
Sea Ice Historical Forecast Project 16.12.2010
A new experiment has been launched as part of the WCRP Climate-system Historical Forecast Project coordinated by the Working Group on Seasonal to Interannual Predictability (WGSIP). The Sea Ice Historical Forecast Project (Ice-HFP) consists of a set of multi-model sensitivity experiments design to explore the effects of sea ice in seasonal prediction systems especially the influence of proper initialisation of sea ice on atmospheric circulation... more
Exploring Polar Climate Predictability 15.12.2010
The WCRP workshop on Seasonal to Multi-decadal Predictability of Polar Climate, held in Bergen, Norway, on 25-29 October 2010, brought together about 80 experts to identify predictable elements of polar climate on timescales from seasons to years and centuries (see full report). There is a pressing societal need to improve the reliability of climate model predictions in polar regions including the response to anthropogenic forcings and the decadal-timescale variability. Early results concerning the extent of polar predictability do show some promise.... more
Advancing Subseasonal-to-Seasonal Predictions 05.12.2010
Increased collaboration between World Weather Research Programme (WWRP) and WCRP is timely for developing and apply new forecast and diagnostic products to societal needs. In a recent article published in BAMS, the scientists associated with these two programmes describe the four main areas of collaboration. This joint effort will provide great benefits to weather, climate and Earth-system prediction services worldwide.... read more
Atlas of Extremes for the Americas 29.11.2010
The CLIVAR VAMOS Working Group on Extremes,
lead by S. Schubert (NASA) and I. Cavalcanti (CPTEC), has created a webpage that displays the rainfall characteristics for the last three decades over the Americas. The geographical distribution and time series of the values are climatology, rainfall frequency, temporal variation of monthly precipitation in terms of the Standard Precipitation Index (SPI)... go to the Atlas
Earth-System Prediction: a 21st Century Challenge 16.11.2010
The Earth-System Prediction Initiative (EPI) was proposed in 2007. International organizations and agencies, including WMO, WCRP and GCOS, are beginning to coordinate activities that embrace components of EPI. Find out more about this grand challenge in a recent article published in BAMS.
WMO report on Climate, Carbon and Coral Reefs 27.10.2010
Jointly with the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), WMO has published a report on the damages that the coral reefs are subjected due to high CO2 emissions. Ocean warming causes extensive coral bleaching events and mass mortalities, while ocean acidification reduces the ability of coral reefs to grow and maintain their structure and function... read more
New Wiki Site on Reanalyses Intercomparison and Observations 19.10.2010
The wiki site provides information on the reanalyses datasets created at different climate/weather research centers. It also provides a forum for discussion about the reanalyses products, how they compare with each other and with observations. This is an activity carried out in collaboration with ACRE, GCOS and WCRP.
Framework for Assessing Operational MJO Forecasts 18.10.2010
A recent article published in BAMS provides an overview of the coordinated framework for the comparison of Madden-Julian Oscillation (MJO) forecasts. 10 world-wide operational forecast centers are adopting the diagnostic and skill metrics that was developed by the U.S. CLIVAR MJO working group and the International CLIVAR. Read the article
NSF call for proposals for CMIP5 analysis 18.10.2010
The US National Science Foundation is accepting proposals for one-year projects to analyse the output of CMIP5 in anticipation of the IPCC AR5. Click here to get more information on the NSF call. Together with model output, some selected observational data sets will be available from PCMDI data portal. These include a number of satellite data sets developed by NASA/JPL specifically designed for CMIP5 evaluation.
WCRP Focus on ENSO Cycle 12.10.2010
While a strong La Niña condition is developing in the equatorial Pacific Ocean (see WMO update), WCRP is organizing a workshop with a specific focus on trends, teleconnections and impacts of ENSO in South America (Guayaquil, Ecuador, 12-14 October 2010)... In the occasion of the release of the WMO press note on ENSO condition the director of WCRP, Dr. G. Asrar, was interviewed by Reuters on the progress of global seasonal climate forecasts... read more
WCRP survey on seasonal and decadal simulations 06.10.2010
WCRP invites the wide community of climate scientists to provide information of current and planned participation in the Climate-system Historical Project (CHFP) and CMIP5 Decadal Climate Prediction component. This survey will guide the coordination between WGSIP, WGCM and PCMDI in support of WCRP and IPCC in furthering studies in these areas. Click here to download the survey
Assessment of Interseasonal to Interannual Climate Prediction and Predictability 04.10.2010
This report is the result of the work done by a committee of international experts appointed by the US National Academies. Many of the members of this committee are involved in WCRP panels and working groups. The report makes recommendations about the development of the tools used in forecasting and about specific research goals for improving understanding of sources of predictability... read more
Network on Stochastic Parameterization and Modelling 22.09.2010
An informal network for those interested in Stochastic Parameterization and Modelling has been launched. It consists of an unmediated email list where information on publications, conferences or general opportunities in the field can be posted. This forum is open to everybody interested. A subscription form should be submitted in order to join the list.
WMO informs on Antarctic Ozone layer in 2010 06.09.2010
The Secretariat of the World Meteorological Organization issues bulletins containing information on the state of the ozone layer in the Antarctic at roughly two week intervals from August to November. The information are based on the data provided by WMO Members which operate ozone monitoring stations in the southern hemisphere and satellites to observe ozone globally. Download the 2010 Bulletin
Independent Review Confirms Solid Science Foundation and Recommends Improving Management in IPCC Assessments 02.09.2010
Last week the InterAcademy Council released their report on the U.N.'s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. The independent investigation found no evidence of wrongdoing by the scientists involved in the process. The main recommendations concern changes in the management structure and suggest IPCC to completely refresh its top leadership and limit the time for people to hold top positions... read the report
Release of updated GCOS Implementation Plan 31.08.2010
The Global Observing System for Climate has released its updated version of the Implementation Plan. This is the result of a two-month web-based open review by the scientific community between November 2009 and January 2010, to which many of WCRP affiliated scientists contributed, and it includes the revised list of GCOS Essential Climate Variables (ECVs)... read more
Release of Community Earth System Model (CESM 1.0) 18.08.2010
CESM is a fully-coupled, global climate model that provides state-of-the-art computer simulations of the Earth's past, present and future climate states. The improvements in the new software release "gives a better representations of the real world" says NCAR scientist James Hurrell, CLIVAR co-chair and chair of the scientific committee that developed the model.
Surface Temperature Datasets for the 21st Century 4.8.2010
The UK MetOffice is leading a multi-institutional initiative on producing a new suite of surface temperature datasets to characterise changes at finer space and time scales. A workshop is planned in September 2010 in Exeter UK and several white papers have been solicited ahead for broad input thought a moderated blog.... more
State of the Climate in 2009 - NOAA Report 30.07.2010
This 20th annual report evaluates 10 key indicators of the Earth's climate including air and sea temperatures, sea level, sea-ice extension, ice and snow cover on land. The document has been published in BAMS (vol. 91), June 2010.
Regional Variability of Sea-Level change in the Indian Ocean 27.07.2010
The warming of the Indo-Pacific warm pool in the past 50 years seems the cause of an unevenly rising of Indian Ocean Sea levels affecting some densely populated costal areas. The study, published in Nature Geosciences, is co-authored by scientists from U. Colorado at Boulder and NCAR: among those G. Meehl co-chair of WCRP WGCM.
Special JGR issue on Global Dimming and Brighting 20.07.2010
Recent evidences indicates that solar radiation incident at the Earth's surface is not stable over time, but undergoes significant decadal variations. The papers of this special issue of JGR discuss several aspects of global dimming and brightening including their representation in climate models and their impacts on the global climate system.
GRL article: Atmospheric aerosols and precipitation 16.07.2010
Aerosols affect precipitation in opposing ways. To find out the net effect, the scientists at GFDL, including WCRP JSC member V. Ramaswamy, simulated the response to increased black carbon levels. They found a small reduction in global mean precipitation... read more
WCRP effort to understand Low Cloud Feedback in Climate Models 12.07.2010
The WGCM Cloud Feedback Model Intercomparison Project (CFMIP) and the GEWEX Cloud System Study (GCSS) have initiated a joint project on the intercomparison of Large Eddy Models and Single Column Models (CGILS) to understand the physical mechanisms of low cloud feedback in climate models... read more
MJO dynamical forecast Intercomparison web resource 1.7.2010
NCEP has established an experimental operational MJO forecast intercomparison activity that was initiated by the US CLIVAR MJO working group. In 2010, the group was reformulated as the WCRP/WWRP THORPEX YOTC Task Force. For more information visit the website.
Sea-level Rise and its impacts on society 25.6.2010
The awaited book on Understanding Sea-Level Rise and Variability by J. Church, former WCRP/JSC Chair, P. Woodworth, former GLOSS Chair, T. Aarup, UNESCO/IOC, and W.S. Wilson, NOAA NESDIS, will be available in August 2010. The book provides a concise summary of past, present and future sea-level rise and its impacts on society. Download the order form.
Science special issue on Changing Oceans 22.6.2010
The science magazine publishes a series of review articles on the changes that are affecting the oceans. The articles provide an overview of recent discoveries as well as identify some of the challenges for preserving the oceans' resources. The editorial of the current Science issue features an introduction by John Church, former WCRP/JSC Chair.
WCRP Review article on global warming impacts on El Niño 27.5.2010
The WCRP/CLIVAR Panel on the Pacific Ocean concludes, in a review article published in Nature Geosciences, that the changes in the Pacific region due to the rising of global temperatures will affect the character of ENSO and the impacts that ENSO has on the Pacific countries. However, it remains hard to identify whether ENSO variability will be enhanced or moderated, or how the frequency of the events will change. Read the article.
Upper Ocean Warming 21.5.2010
A recent article in Science reports on a major international joint effort in comparing upper-ocean heat content datasets and identifying the sources of uncertainties attached to them. The study shows a robust evidence for a warming trend in the last decade. Read the article and news&views by K. Trenberth (GEWEX Chair).
Strong deep current in the Southern Ocean 11.5.2010
In a paper published in Nature Geoscience, Japanese and Australian scientists including Dr J. Church, former WCRP JSC Chair, show evidence of a deep ocean current with a volume equivalent to 40 Amazon Rivers. This is an important pathway in the global network of ocean currents that influence climate patterns. Read more.
2009 Highlights from Environmental Research Letters 6.5.2010
A collection of highlights from volume 4 of Environmental Research Letters includes contributions on sea-level rise, climate and energy, geoengineering. The collection will be free to read throughout 2010. ERL has also recently launched its latest focus issue, “Anticipated changes in the global atmospheric water cycle”.
Science article - Where has the energy from global warming gone? 30.4.2010
In a recent article in Science, Kevin Trenberth, former WOAP Chair and newly appointed GEWEX Chair, addresses the challenges of obtaining a closure of the Earth's energy budget. They suggest that state-of-the-art observations are unable to fully account for recent energy variability. Read more.
SPARC CCMVal Report now available 15.4.2010
The CCMVal activity of the WCRP SPARC project has just completed a comprehensive assessment of stratosphere-resolving chemistry-climate models, using process-oriented performance metrics. This assessment is the result of the efforts of many scientists over the last two years, and has been extensively peer-reviewed. The final accepted version of the components of the report is now available to download.
CLIVAR Report: Earth System Initialisation for Decadal Predictions 15.4.2010
In November 2009, an international group of 50 scientists gathered together to address some of the technical challenges that decadal prediction poses. The workshop, sponsored by WCRP/CLIVAR, was directed at making an inventory of initialisation and perturbation techniques in earth system models and providing a roadmap to make skillful decadal predictions. Further information on the workshop outcomes can be found in the recently published report.
The Year of El Niño 07.4.2010
The ongoing El Niño event continues to have significant and widespread impacts. The signature of this event, which started in June 2009, is seen in basin-wide Pacific Ocean conditions, and in many of the climate patterns around the world that are typically impacted by an El Niño event. Read the WMO ENSO update.
GEWEX: Is There a Missing Low Cloud Feedback in Current Climate Models? 07.4.2010
An analysis by Prof. Graeme Stephen published in the last issue of GEWEX News suggests that solar radiation reflected by low clouds is significantly enhanced in models compared to real cloud observations. This finding has major implications for the cloud-climate feedback problem in model.
AMS Special Issues on Drought and Western Boundary Currents 18.3.2010
Two special collections of papers published in selected AMS peer-reviewed journals are drawn from research coordinated by WCRP/CLIVAR and US CLIVAR. The list of papers on Drought and the list on Western Boundary Currents can be access through the AMS webpage
Science article: Decadal climate change caused by Stratospheric Water Vapour 10.3.2010
This study led by Susan Solomon, IPCC WG1 Co-chair for AR4, highlights the role of stratospheric water vapour concentrations in driving decadal variability in the global surface temperature. Read the article.
Article in Science: Hurricanes intensify Under Global Warming, Models Suggest 24.2.2010
A model study, led by US scientists (some of them members of the WCRP/CLIVAR panel) suggests that less, but more-distructive, hurricanes will cross the Atlantic Ocean in this century under greenhouse gas emissions as usual. Read the article.
Article on Nature Geoscience: IOD and ENSO Linkages 23.2.2010
The article, co-authored by members of the WCRP/CLIVAR Pacific and Indian Oceans Panels, suggests an influence of the State of the Indian Ocean Dipole on the following year's El Niño. Read the article.
BAMS article: A Unified Modeling Approach to Climate System Prediction 20.1.2010
In a recent BAMS article, J. Hurrell (WCRP CLIVAR SSG Co-chair) and colleagues discuss different strategies for a more unified approach to climate system prediction. At the heart of this new approach is the realization that all climate system predictions, regardless of time scale, share common processes and mechanisms; moreover, interactions across time and space scales are fundamental to the climate system itself. Read the article.
Article on Nature Reports Climate Change: More Knowledge, Less Certainty 26.1.2010
Kevin Trenberth, WOAP Chair, anticipates that the uncertainty in AR5's climate predictions and projections will be much greater than in previous IPCC reports, primarily because models will attempt new and better representations of important climate processes and their feedbacks . While our knowledge of certain factors does increase, so does our understanding of factors we previously did not account for or even recognize. This could present a major problem for public understanding of climate change. Read the article.
Article: Sea level budget from space gravimetry, satellite altimetry and Argo 12.1.2010
In an article published in the Global and Planetary Change, Anny Cazenave of the Laboratory for Studies in Space Geophysics and Oceanography (LEGOS) in Toulouse, France, and her colleagues quantified the contributions of melting land ice and thermal expansion to sea-level rise. They used gravity data from the GRACE satellites and temperature records collected by the Argo network of buoys. Read more.
Journal of Climate article: Application of MJO simulation diagnostics to climate models 4.1.2010
The ability of eight climate models to simulate the Madden–Julian oscillation (MJO) is examined using diagnostics developed by the U.S. Climate Variability and Predictability (CLIVAR) MJO Working Group. Read more.