UK Climate Projections - UKCP09


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Presentation by Dr Alastair Brown (UK Climate Impacts Programme - UKCIP) to the third sector event on the UK Climate Projections tools.
Defra's Innovation Centre
28 July 2009

Published in: Technology, News & Politics
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  • UKCIP published climate change scenarios on 1998 and 2002. Before UKCIP’s first publication in 1998 the Met office and other scientific centres had been modelling climate. UKCIP scenarios have always used the best information and techniques available and have evolved as our knowledge of climate, available computing power and understanding of stakeholder needs have grown and developed. Each report reflected the cutting edge of climate science at the time it was published. Climate science has moved substantially since 2002, and can now provide us with probabilistic information helping us explore the range of expected changes. Most importantly since 1991, the audience for this information has changed substantially. Back in the early 1990s this was almost exclusively used within academic realms and by climate change specialists – and undoubtedly by those early government climate negotiators (Rio Earth Summit 1992). Over time the range of people that use the reports has grown and UKCIP02 is used by thousands of people in a very diverse range of situations, and we expect that UKCP09 will push these boundaries further still as the information becomes more readily accessible.
  • As a stakeholder led organisation, UKCIP have been able to respond to user needs for the new climate projections. These needs reflect a desire for greater consideration of the uncertainties associated with climate projections and a way of trying to quantify them. The 50km grid square provided in the last set of projections did not provide enough detail of the climate variables and so the users required greater detail in the way the new projections represented time and space. Users also wanted to be able to have greater access to the data and as a result the User Interface was developed to support the way the projections can be interrogated. The final demand from users was to include more climate change detail on marine environments.
  • We believe the provision of probabilistic climate projections is an important and useful advance. PDFs and CDFs will become the main ‘currency’ of UKCP projections. PDFs good for showing range or projections, and the probabilities within that range (i.e. its shape) CDFs good for probability of exceedance
  • UKCP09 will be delivered using a layered approach. Key findings – key messages within the reports Published material – reports etc (paper and online) Customisable – images and data Each layer will provide greater degrees of detail and will require a greater amount of understanding and interpretation.
  • T he products can be arranged according the data sources they are taken from. T he tube lines represent journeys of information that can be taken to identify more detail knowledge to help in decision making.
  • The User Guidance on the UKCP09 dedicated website provides clear guidance on the use of t he projections, including the methods underpinning them and the range of products and tools used to access the data. Support is provided on appropriate ways to use the products and how to interpret the results generated from them.
  • To support engagement with t he User Interface a dedicated ‘How to … ’ manual has been written. This can be used to help generate requests ranging in sophistication and to answer questions as to why certain procedures or available or not.
  • A dedicated training programme has been developed to support user engagement immediately after the launch. These will involve a series of familiarisation workshops and hand-on training in accessing the data. eLearning support will provide dedicated training in using and applying the projections to user practice. Dedicated online environment can be used to create communities of practice where peer-support can help users develop best practice.
  • T here will be a range of support mechanisms available to stakeholders using UKCP09. This reflects the user need at the start for having greater accessibility and so the majority of the support is available through online environments.
  • When thinking about using UKCP09 in many cases it is precipitated by events – either, local, national or international. This example is based on work that UKCIP have completed with Oxfordshire County Council – and is based around the 2006 heat wave – We began to wonder however how they might have used the UKCP09 package of information and imagined that we had a heat wave again in 2010 and looked at these issues for the first time. For Oxfordshire County Council it was the hot summer of 2010. During the summer temperatures were regularly exceeding 30 °C and council services were struggling to deliver the quality of service which the councillors and the citizens of Oxfordshire demand. During the Autumn of 2010 Councillors requested that a council wide “Post Event Review” was undertaken to identify services which were particularly hard hit by the heat wave. Surprisingly one of the most significant impacts for the county came from breakdown of transport infrastructure, as several of the counties major roads melted in the heat, and for the first time in Oxfordshire, the gritters went out in the summer to lay road grit down to stabilise the melting surfaces.
  • R emember - The weather generator is an analytical tool that can be used to further analyse the projections to consider the relative frequency of exceeding a threshold. L arge data set – calculation based on 30X365X100 for each of the 6 variables Weather generator provides long sequence of daily output for grid squares representative of Oxfordshire Threshold detector tool in Weather Generator – can detect number of days that exceed a specified threshold Allows assessment of number of times there is a daily maximum temperature for 2 consecutive days > 35 °C: For 1961 to 1990 period (for validation) For 2030s and 2050s time periods  to estimate the changing risk
  • UK Climate Projections - UKCP09

    1. 1. UK Climate Projections - UKCP09 Third Sector Projections in Practice Event, Reading, 28 July 2009 Dr Alastair Brown, UK Climate Impacts Programme
    2. 2. Introduction <ul><li>B ackground to the UK Climate Projections </li></ul><ul><li>UKCP09 products </li></ul><ul><li>Using UKCP09 products </li></ul><ul><li>UKCIP support </li></ul>
    3. 3. How do we plan for the future? <ul><li>The past as a guide to the future </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>assumes “stationarity” </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>but, past events and their management may be informative </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Oracles, augury, cards, sorcery, …… </li></ul><ul><li>“ Predict – Optimise - Relax” or “Assess – Hedge - Review”? </li></ul><ul><li>Plan for one future or many? </li></ul>Impacts & Consequences what will happen? Climate change how will my system behave? Sensitivity/vulnerability
    4. 4. Background to UKCP09 <ul><li>UK climate scenarios produced since 1991 </li></ul><ul><li>UKCIP published climate scenarios in 1998 and 2002 </li></ul><ul><li>Nature and scope of information has evolved, building upon: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>improved scientific knowledge </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>increased computing power </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>stakeholder requirements </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Each has represented best scientific understanding at that time </li></ul><ul><li>Audience has evolved and grown </li></ul>CCIRG91 CCIRG96 UKCIP98 UKCIP02 UKCP09 next
    5. 5. User-led development <ul><li>Improved consideration and quantification of associated uncertainties – (resulting in probabilistic nature of the projections) </li></ul><ul><li>Improved spatial and temporal detail </li></ul><ul><li>Improved accessibility (we provided a dedicated online user interface) </li></ul><ul><li>More information about climate change in the marine environment </li></ul><ul><li>W hat next? </li></ul>
    6. 6. UKCIP and UKCP09 UKCIP - UK Climate Impacts Programme UKCP09 - 2009 Climate Projections UKCP09 launched on 18 June 2009
    7. 7. Production Partners <ul><li>Management by Defra, Hadley Centre, UKCIP </li></ul><ul><li>User Panel, Steering Group, Expert Review </li></ul><ul><li>Others delivered User Interface, Marine, Weather Generator, Guidance </li></ul>
    8. 8. UKCP09 Improvements <ul><li>Improved representation of the climate system </li></ul><ul><li>Quantification of modelling uncertainty </li></ul><ul><li>Probabilistic output – robust decisions </li></ul><ul><li>More spatial and temporal detail </li></ul><ul><li>User interface </li></ul><ul><li>Training programme </li></ul><ul><li>Managed enquiry system </li></ul>
    9. 9. UKCP09 – Responding to Users 25 km grid Marine Administrative River Basin 30-year time periods Uncertainty Spatial resolution Temporal resolution
    10. 10. Clarifying Uncertainties <ul><li>The provision of probabilistic projections is one of the fundamental building blocks of UKCP09 </li></ul><ul><li>Probabilities provide a relative measure of the strength of evidence considered that supports a particular future climate outcome – supporting risk management and robust decision making </li></ul>Relative strength of the evidence supporting a specific change…. Relative strength of the evidence supporting the change being equal to or less than a specific amount… PDF CDF <ul><ul><li>Do not indicate the percentage of occasions during a 30-year time period when the change be less than the specified value </li></ul></ul>78% probability of being equal to or greater than 3 20 0 40 60 80 100 Size of change 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 22% Size of change 2 0 4 6 8 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 8%
    11. 11. Uncertainty: “ How hot?” Answer 1 Answer 2 “ 42 ° C ” No information on uncertainty Very acceptable to some May be misunderstood as “no uncertainty” Uncertainty is explicit May be unwelcome – much more work required Better decisions possible
    12. 12. UKCP09 layered approach Communicators Researcher / Scientist Decision Makers
    13. 13. UKCP09 products
    14. 17. Online support – User Guidance
    15. 18. Online support – User Interface manual
    16. 19. Training support <ul><li>Projections in Practice (PiP) programme </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Familiarisation workshops </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>M ax 100 delegates </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>P resentations from UKCIP, Defra, Keynote speaker </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>H ands-on training on accessing the User Interface </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>10 delegates </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>National, s ector specific events (July 2009) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Regional events (Autumn 2009) </li></ul></ul>
    17. 20. Training support (cont.) <ul><li>eLearning </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Aim to s upport and enhance PiP programme </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>D evelop communities of practice using UKCP09 to share understanding and good practice </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>D iscussion forums </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>W ikis </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>B logs </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>N ews feeds </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>W ebinars </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>P odcasts </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>S pecific online resources to develop skills and understanding </li></ul></ul>
    18. 21. Supporting UKCP09 <ul><li>Online support </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Dedicated website </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The User Guidance </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The User Interface manual </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Help desk (FAQs) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Training </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Projections in Practice (PiP) programme </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>eLearning </li></ul></ul>
    19. 22. H o w UKCP09 might be used … <ul><li>“ Roads are being sanded as quickly as the Council can do the work but the Council can barely cope” (Oxford Times 2 nd July 2006) </li></ul><ul><li>Highways responded as gritters had been used for the first time during the summer as roads began to melt. </li></ul><ul><li>Council members asked for a post event review from the Highways Department </li></ul>
    20. 23. How could they use UKCP09? <ul><li>Highways were able to identify the conditions under which the roads began to melt. Air temperatures in excess of 35 ° C for more than 2 days. </li></ul><ul><li>Review the Observed trends report and Climate projections report, and evaluate if roads melting in the summer is likely to become a more regular event. </li></ul><ul><li>Use this information along with Key findings, the Briefing report and Pre-prepared maps & graphs, submit a report to council members to describe what had happened and suggest further research. </li></ul>
    21. 24. The need to know more <ul><li>With additional resources they could explore various UKCP09 products </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Using customisable outputs (from User Interface) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Sampled data using t he Weather Generator </li></ul></ul>Benefits Limitations More specific detail 25km resolution Probabilistic data Monthly data Benefits Limitations 5km resolution L arge data set Daily information A ble to explore thresholds Less robust
    22. 25. Worked Example - Summary <ul><li>UKCP09 is suite of products </li></ul><ul><li>use the right product in the right place </li></ul><ul><li>St rengths and weaknesses to using each product </li></ul>
    23. 26. Useful Websites UK Climate Projections (UKCP09) UKCP09 Technical Site UKCP09 Helpdesk Training & e-learning resources for UKCP09