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Category: Climate models

Climate models show coastal areas threatened by rising seas

LOS ANGELES (KCAL / KCBS) – Climate change is an important part of President Joe Biden’s agenda – a point that will be in the foreground on his next trip to the United Nations Climate Change Conference.

Could 50 cities in the world completely change or even disappear because of climate change? A nonprofit said it can and wants to show you how.

New climate models highlight just how serious the problem is.

They show that parts of Southern California could be submerged in the next century if people don’t do something now.

“Their ability to exist in the future depends on the actions we take,” said Benjamin Strauss, CEO of Climate Central, who researched and created striking images of landmarks around the world, including some parts of the world. Southern California like Long Beach and Huntington Beach.

The Santa Monica Pier is a landmark, but these models show that anything could go away.

A model shows the Santa Monica promenade underwater, according to projections by climatologists, which could come true over the next few centuries if temperatures and sea levels rise without human intervention.

“It’s really sad to think that he might one day disappear under rising seas,” Strauss said.

Projections range from 1 to 4 degrees of warming, with the worst-case scenarios showing seas rising over 20 feet.

In the Long Beach footage, high tides push all the way up to Highway 405, and much of Huntington Beach is also underwater.

“Really, the neighborhoods from Golden West to Los Altos would be way below sea level, could be almost 10 feet,” Strauss said.

While images like these could be hundreds of years in the future, scientists have said climate change is already wreaking havoc along the coastline.

“It’s not something that looks to the future; it’s happening right now, ”said John Dorsey, a professor at Loyola Marymount University who studies sea level rise.

He points out that the loss of beaches and the tourists they bring could drain Southern California’s economy, and said infrastructure such as water pipes, sewers and highways would also be lost.

“If we get this coastal erosion, it could erode and start destroying this kind of infrastructure. We’re going to pay billions of dollars to try to move this inland, ”Dorsey said.

Climate scientists have said that part of this could be avoided if people take significant steps to reduce emissions over the next decade.

Copyright 2021 KCAL / KCBS via CNN Newsource. All rights reserved.


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New climate models show much of Southern California underwater – CBS Los Angeles

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – A climate-focused nonprofit has shown in models how some 50 cities around the world could potentially change or even disappear due to climate change.

“Their ability to exist in the future depends on the actions we take,” said Benjamin Strauss, CEO of Climate Central.

READ MORE: Bill Clinton hospitalized at the UCI medical center in Orange: “He is on the mend”

Strauss’s nonprofit Climate Central researched and created striking images of landmarks around the world, including parts of Southern California like Long Beach and Huntington Beach, affected by the rise in the sky. sea ​​level.

The Santa Monica Pier is a landmark seen from both the ground and the sky, but these models show that everything could be gone and, in 100 years, could be very different.

The model shows Santa Monica’s walk underwater, according to climatologists’ projections, which could come true over the next few centuries if temperatures and sea levels rise without human intervention.

“It’s really sad to think that he might one day disappear under the rising sea,” Strauss said.

RELATED: Report: Nearly 5.7 Million Los Angeles County Residents Vulnerable to Extreme Heat, Drought, and Flooding by 2050

Projections range from 1 to 4 degrees of warming, with the worst-case scenarios showing an increase in the sea of ​​more than 20 feet.

Visualization of the Long Beach climate model. (credit: Climate Central)

In the Long Beach photos, high tides push all the way up to Highway 405 and much of Huntington is also underwater.

READ MORE: A section of MacArthur Park will close starting Friday to eliminate homeless camps

“Really, the neighborhoods from Golden West to Los Altos would all be way below sea level, could be almost 10 feet,” Strauss said.

While images like these could be thousands of years into our future, scientists have said climate change is already wreaking havoc along our coastline.

“It’s not something that’s in the future. It’s happening right now, ”said John Dorsey, professor at Loyola Marymount.

Dorsey studies sea level rise and points out that the loss of our beaches and the tourists they bring could drain our local economy. He also said that we would lose infrastructure, like water pipes, sewers and highways.

“IF we get this coastal erosion that could erode and start destroying this kind of infrastructure, we’ll pay billions of dollars to try to move this area inland,” Dorsey said.

Climate scientists say part of this could be avoided if we take significant steps to reduce emissions over the next decade.

On Thursday, it was announced that President Biden will be traveling to Europe for the annual United Nations climate change conference in a few weeks.

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How political science can advance climate models

From thermal domes in the Pacific Northwest to flooding in Henan, China, 2021 has been a year of extreme weather events. It is more crucial and more timely than ever to identify the appropriate means to tackle climate change.

With the conclusion of climate talks at the United Nations General Assembly, the eyes of the world are on the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26), the results of which will be critical for the global climate future .

Decisions made at the conference will, in part, be based on findings from scientific papers using so-called “Integrated Assessment Models” (IAM), which “combines different streams of knowledge to model human society alongside parts of the Earth system”.

Existing AIMs have integrated economic, technological and biophysical processes that produce greenhouse gas emissions. While politics plays an important role in shaping climate-related policies and trajectories, political scientists have not been actively involved in the development of integrated assessment models and, by extension, the scientific basis for it. climate policy development. This must – and can – change.

The missing contribution of political science to climate modeling is probably due to two main factors: the lack of exposure and meaningful interaction between political scientists and climatologists and a great difficulty in modeling political phenomena. Indeed, when I was a doctoral student at Stanford taking classes in climate modeling in 2017, I was told to be the first from political science to do so.

While some have already expressed concern about the unrealistic representation of the model, actual design and implementation to address these concerns has been scarce. After all, this is a very difficult and time-consuming task, requiring at a minimum an intimate knowledge of the political world, familiarity with the models and knowledge of what can be incorporated, as well as the technical expertise to bring to bear. artwork.

I think political scientists can help model the climate in specific areas. My recently published exercise, which conceptualizes and implements the internalization of a key political concept – human security – offers lessons on how to achieve this.

Making reasonable assumptions about political behavior can provide essential information about future alternative climates. A critical step towards achieving this goal is to conceptualize and quantify fundamental political science ideas such as power, violence and preferences so that they can be incorporated into IAMs. Not all basic ideas lend themselves to incorporation, but some recently published econometric studies – which “transform theoretical economic models into useful tools for economic policy making” according to the International Monetary Fund – leading the way. I postulate that political scientists have a lot to contribute to answering two fundamental questions.

First, what would be optimal? Political scientists can improve the estimation of the optimal carbon price – the price at which the net social benefit of carbon emissions would be maximized – by internalizing the costs of significant social impacts not previously taken into account.

One example is the cost of climate-induced violence. My recent study uses econometric estimates of the costs of human violence and the climate-violence relationship and an established model called MERGE. He thinks that such internalization can significantly influence the optimal carbon price. The impact can be significant and sub-Saharan Africa is estimated to be the biggest beneficiary in terms of avoiding damage from climate-induced violence. As future researchers adjust the approach taken in the study, they may incorporate other missing, but potentially significant, social damages. A promising candidate could be that of climate-induced migration.

Second, what would be feasible? Climate policies concern distributive policy, so tThe second axis is to introduce and adjust the representation of political constraints in the MOIs according to constituency preferences, incumbent’s electoral incentives, incumbent’s ideology or partisan orientation, and the presence of powerful interest groups, among other factors.

In democracies, voters would support climate policy if they believe it is in their best interests and oppose it otherwise. However, voters’ preferences are not taken into account in the same way by career-conscious incumbents who, when eligible for re-election, would pursue the set of policies likely to maximize their electoral results. In addition, governments tend to place more importance on the well-being of a nucleus of citizens than on opposing groups and would be more inclined to adapt to the preferences of powerful interest groups. A modeling goal would be to represent these considerations to achieve a workable set of alternatives.

While none of this is easy, integrating political science into climate modeling is meaningful and long overdue. As statistician George Box said once, “All models are wrong, but some are useful.” Political scientists can help make climate models more real and useful and contribute more substantially to climate policy making.

Dr Shiran Victoria Shen is a political scientist and environmental engineer, Hoover National Fellow and Assistant Professor at the University of Virginia.


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Climate models cannot replicate the slowdown in global warming of the early 2000s – scientists explain why

A recent study led by Dr Wei and Dr Qiao of the First Institute of Oceanography at the Department of Natural Resources provides an assessment of the performance of recently published CMIP6 models to simulate the slowdown in global warming observed in the early 2000s. This study reveals that the key to simulating and predicting short-term temperate change is to separate and properly simulate the two distinct signals i.e. the human-induced long-term warming trend and natural variabilities, in particular interannual, interdecadal and multidecadal ones. Balance. This work has been published online in Science China Earth Sciences.

After unprecedented warming in the last quarter of the 20th century, global surface temperature growth unexpectedly slowed between 1998 and 2013 despite the sharp increase in greenhouse gas emissions; this phenomenon is called hiatus or slowing down of global warming to be more precise. Slowing global warming challenges existing scientific understanding of the mechanisms of global temperature change, so has been one of the most worrying issues in recent climate research and even the public.

Change in rate of warming

Figure 1. Warming rate during rapid warming period (1975 / 01-1997 / 12) (a) and warming gap period (1998 / 01-2013 / 12) (b) and change in warming rate during the period of hiatus from the period of rapid warming (c). All warming rates are derived from 28 simulated global temperature time series (bars) and six observed (vertical lines). Credit: © Science China Press

However, the sophisticated and advanced climate models of CMIP5 could not simulate this slowdown in warming. During the period 1998-2013, the models mainly show a rapid warming surge that deviates considerably from the observed flat temperature time series. The models considerably overestimate the rate of warming observed over the recent period. The IPCC AR5 said: “Almost all historical CMIP5 simulations do not reproduce the recent observed warming gap.” As a result, the ability to simulate and predict sophisticated climate models has been called into question.

Now, CMIP6 model data is gradually released since 2020. Newly developed models include a better understanding of the mechanisms of global temperature change, in particular more reasonable physical processes of natural variability. Successful simulations of the global warming slowdown are expected in next-generation models. As data from 28 new models becomes available, there is a need for a timely review of the ability of CMIP6 models to exhibit the recent slowdown in warming.

Rate of warming of interannual, interdecadal and multidecadal variability

Figure 2. Rate of warming of interannual, interdecadal and multidecadal variabilities (IAV, IDV, MDV) and secular trend (ST) during the period of rapid warming (1975 / 01-1997 / 12, symbols on the left) and the period of hiatus (1998 / 01-2013 / 12, symbols on the right) derived from the 28 time series of simulated global temperatures (orange and green pentagrams) and six observed (red and blue bars). Credit: © Science China Press

Against six widely used global surface temperature datasets, the research team at the First Institute of Oceanography at the Department of Natural Resources are evaluating the performance of the 28 newly released CMIP6 models to simulate the recent slowdown in warming and find that the Most CMIP6 models still fail to reproduce. slower warming, although they show encouraging improvements over the CMIP5 models (Figure 1).

In addition, they explored possible reasons for the difficulty of CMIP6 models in simulating the recent slowdown in warming. They reveal that it is associated with model shortcomings in simulating temperature change signals distinct from the long-term human-induced warming trend and / or the three crucial natural variabilities at interannual, interdecadal and multidecadal scales ( Figure 2).

This study reveals that the key to simulating and predicting short-term temperate change is to separate and properly simulate the two distinct signals, i.e. the human-induced long-term warming trend and variability. natural, in particular those at interannual, interdecadal and multidecadal scales. . This suggests that key-scale variabilities require more attention in models, given their vital roles in modulating the change in the rate of warming at decadal to multi-decadal scales. This result can provide important information for simulating and predicting short-term climate change.

Reference: “Could CMIP6 climate models reproduce the slowdown in global warming of the early 2000s?” by Meng Wei, Qi Shu, Zhenya Song, Yajuan Song, Xiaodan Yang, Yongqing Guo, Xinfang Li and Fangli Qiao, April 15, 2021, Science China Earth Sciences.
DOI: 10.1007 / s11430-020-9740-3

This research was funded by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 41806043 and 41821004).


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Climate Cast: University of Minnesota researchers use AI to improve climate models

Climate models all agree that the Earth will warm considerably this century. But predicting the precise magnitude of warming tells a lot more to climatologists about future extreme weather events and sea level rise.

Now researchers at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities are part of a new $ 25 million climate modeling center funded by the US National Science Foundation. Their mission: to use big data and artificial intelligence to create more accurate climate models that help us prepare for the inevitable disruptions to come.

“If you live in New York, should we build a sea wall and how high should it be?” If you live in California and Texas, what are the projections for water availability? Maybe we will have to choose different cultures [there]”said computer and engineering professor Vipin Kumar who is part of the team at UM’s new climate modeling center.

“There are a whole bunch of planning decisions people are going to have to make, and being able to understand what’s going to happen with climate change is extremely important,” he said.

To learn more about Kumar, click read on the audio player above or subscribe to the Climate Cast podcast on Apple podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Where RSS.

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How Climate Models Got So Accurate They Won A Nobel Prize

Climate modellers have a moment.

Last month, Time magazine listed two – Friederike Otto and Geert Jan van Oldenborg of the World Weather Attribution Project – among the 100 Most Influential People of 2021. Two weeks ago, Katharine Hayhoe of Texas Tech University was a guest on the popular talk show CBS Jimmy Kimmel Live! And on Tuesday, climate modeling pioneers Syukuro Manabe and Klaus Hasselman shared the Nobel Prize in physics with theoretical physicist Giorgio Parisi – recognition, said Thors Hans Hansson, chairman of the Nobel Committee in Physics, that “our knowledge of climate rests on a solid scientific basis, based on a rigorous analysis of the observations.

Climate modelers are experts in Earth or planetary sciences, often with background in applied physics, mathematics, or computer science, who use physics and chemistry to create equations, feed them into supercomputers, and apply them to simulate the climate of Earth or other planets. Models have long been viewed by climate change deniers as the soft underbelly of climate science. Being necessarily predictive, they were considered to be essentially unverifiable and the result of erroneous entries producing unreliable results.

A 1990 National Geographic The article put it this way: “Critics say modeling is in its infancy and cannot even reproduce the details of our current climate. The modelers agree and note that the predictions necessarily fluctuate with each refinement of the model.

However, more recent analyzes, dating back decades, have found that many of the early models were remarkably accurate in their predictions of global temperature increases. Now, as computing power increases and more and more refinements are added to modeling inputs, modelers are more confident in defending their work. As a result, says Dana Nuccitelli, author of Climatology versus pseudoscience: exposing the unsuccessful predictions of global warming skeptics, “There has certainly been a change from outright denial of climate science; because the predictions turned out to be so accurate, it becomes harder and harder to deny the science at this point. “

This 1990 article quoted Manabe – widely regarded as the father of modern climate modeling – as saying that, in some of the early models, “all kinds of crazy things happened … sea ice covered tropical oceans, for example.” But in a seminal 1970 article, the first to make a specific projection of future warming, Manabe argued that global temperatures would increase by 0.57 degrees Celsius (1.03 degrees Fahrenheit) between 1970 and 2000. The actual warming recorded was remarkably close to 0.54 ° C. (0.97 ° F).

A 2019 article by Zeke Hausfather of the University of California at Berkeley, Henri Drake and Tristan Abbott of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and Gavin Schmidt of the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies analyzed 17 models dating from the 1970s and found that 14 accurately predicted the relationship between global temperatures as greenhouse gases increased. (The estimates of two were too high and one was too low.) That’s because fundamental physics has always been strong, says Dana Nuccitelli, research coordinator at the Citizens’ Climate Lobby. and author of Climatology versus pseudoscience: exposing the unsuccessful predictions of global warming skeptics.

“We’ve understood for decades the basic science that if you put a certain amount of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, we’ll get some warming,” he says. “These forecasts in the 1970s were remarkably accurate, but they also used fairly simplified climate models, in part because of our level of understanding of climate systems, but also because of computational limitations at the time. It is certainly true that climate models have come a long way.

The more things change …

In the realm of climate modeling, “What hasn’t changed over the years is the overall assessment of the extent of global warming as we increase CO2,” says Hayhoe, who is also Chief Scientist for Nature Conservancy and author of Saving Us: A Climate Scientist’s Case for Hope and Healing in a Divided World. “What has changed is our understanding at increasingly smaller spatial and temporal scales. Our understanding of feedbacks in the climate system, our understanding, for example, of the real sensitivity of the Arctic. “

As this understanding has grown, she says, it has enabled the development of what she calls “the cutting edge of climate science today” – the attribution of individual events, the specialty for which Otto and van Oldenberg were recognized in Time, which for the first time is able to establish strong links between climate change and specific weather events, such as heat waves in the western United States or the amount of rain deposited by Hurricane Harvey.

“We couldn’t do this without models,” says Hayhoe, “because we need the models to simulate a world without people. And we have to compare an Earth without people to the Earth we live on with humans and carbon emissions. And when we compare these two Earths, we can see how human-induced climate change has altered the duration, intensity, and even damage associated with a specific event.

In Hayhoe’s case, the actual act of modeling is “looking at thousands of lines of code, and it’s so intense that I often do it at night, when people aren’t emailing and that the lights are out and that I can focus on that bright screen. in a dark room. Then I blink and it’s suddenly half past four in the morning.

Much of the work, she says, involves trying to find things wrong with the models, to make sure they reflect reality. “If it doesn’t quite fit, we have to look more carefully because there is something that we didn’t quite understand. “

While such deviations can be flaws in the models, they can sometimes reflect errors in the observations. For example, a series of studies in 2005 found that satellite data which appeared to show no warming in the lower atmosphere, or the troposphere, and which was used to cast doubt on global warming patterns, was itself wrong. The models, backed by data from weather balloons, have always been right.

Irony, says Michael Mann, professor emeritus of atmospheric science at Penn State University and most recent author of The new climate war, is that “climatologists have been dismissed as alarmists for the predictions we made, but the predictions, if any, have been shown to be too conservative and we are seeing even greater impacts than we expected.” “

The apparent imminent collapse of the system that drives the currents of the Atlantic Ocean is, he says, an example. “It’s something we thought we could happen, but it’s not only happening, it’s happening sooner than expected,” he notes. Manabe, he points out, was one of those who first raised the possibility decades ago. “It just underscores that what’s going on in climate science is the worst thing that can really happen to a climate modeler: to see your worst predictions come true. “

Modelers recognize that science is not perfect; Even today, uncertainties remain, and not just of a single order.

“Do we have all the physical processes in the model? And if we have them in there, are they represented correctly or not? Hayhoe asks rhetorically. “Then there is a second source of uncertainty called parametric uncertainty. In addition, she says, some processes take place at such small scales, for example among cloud particles, that they cannot be measured directly but must be inferred. obviously this adds some uncertainty. However, the greatest uncertainty, she says, does not lie in physics, but in our own collective behavior, and how prepared we are to allow global levels of greenhouse gases to rise.

“If we didn’t know that carbon emissions produce all of these impacts on us, that it’s not just a curiosity about the increase in global temperature but also our food, our water, our health, our homes, then we would not act. “, says Hayhoe.

“That’s why I do what I do, and that’s why role models are so important, because they show what’s going on right now that we’re responsible for, and what’s going to happen in the future. I look forward to the day when we can just use climate models to just understand this amazing planet, but right now those models are telling us, “Now is the time to act! And if we don’t, the consequences will be serious and dangerous.


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Nobel Prize in Physics rewards trio for contributions to climate models

Stockholm

Three scientists on Tuesday won the Nobel Prize in Physics for work that brought order to apparent disorder, helping to explain and predict the complex forces of nature, including expanding our understanding of climate change.

Syukuro Manabe from Japan and Klaus Hasselmann from Germany have been cited for their work in “physical modeling of the Earth’s climate, quantifying variability and reliably predicting global warming.” The second half of the prize was awarded to Giorgio Parisi from Italy for “the discovery of the interplay of disorder and fluctuations in physical systems from atomic scale to planetary scale”.

Faced with the challenges of climate change, Hasselmann told The Associated Press that he “would rather not have global warming and no Nobel Prize”.

Across the Atlantic at the same time, Manabe noted in an interview that it is easier to understand the physics behind climate change than to get the world to do something.

The three scientists work on what are called “complex systems”, of which climate is just one example. But the price comes with two separate fields of study that are opposed in many ways but share the goal of making sense of what seems random and chaotic in a way that can be predicted.

Mr. Parisi’s work focuses on subatomic particles and is somewhat esoteric and academic, while the work of Mr. Manabe and Mr. Hasselmann focuses on the large-scale global forces that shape our daily lives.

The judges said that Mr. Manabe, 90, and Mr. Hasselmann, 89, “laid the foundation for our knowledge of Earth’s climate and how human actions influence it.”

Beginning in the 1960s, Mr. Manabe, now based at Princeton University in New Jersey, created the first climate models that predicted what would happen to the globe when carbon dioxide built up in the atmosphere. Scientists have shown for decades that carbon dioxide traps heat, but Dr. Manabe’s work has put details and predictions into this general knowledge. This allowed scientists to ultimately show how climate change will get worse and how quickly depending on the amount of carbon pollution being spat out.

About a decade later, Mr Hasselmann, of the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology in Hamburg, Germany, helped explain why climate models can be reliable despite the seemingly chaotic nature of the weather. He also developed ways to look for specific signs of human influence on the climate.

Mr Hasselmann said the problem with climate change is that it exists on such a large time scale that people find it difficult to understand it.

“People tend to deny the problem until it’s too late,” Hasselman said.

During this time, M. Parisi of the Sapienza University in Rome, “built a deep physical and mathematical model” which has enabled us to understand complex systems in fields as different as mathematics, biology, neuroscience and science. machine learning.

His work originally focused on what is known as spin glass, a type of metal alloy in which atoms are arranged in such a way as to change the magnetic properties of the material in seemingly random ways, which baffled scholars. scientists. Mr Parisi, 73, was able to uncover hidden patterns behind this behavior, theories that could be applied to other areas of research as well.

In their work, physicists used complex mathematics to explain and predict what appeared to be chaotic forces of nature in computer simulations, called modeling. This modeling has given scientists such a solid understanding of these forces that they can accurately predict the weather one week per week and warn of the climate decades in advance.

“Physics is about modeling, finding mathematical stories, their equations that accurately reflect the workings of nature and allow humanity to use science, as its instinct for survival,” said Jim Gates, physicist at Brown University.

Some non-scientists have ridiculed modeling, but it has been key to how the world tackles one of its biggest problems – climate change.

“Physically-based climate models have been able to predict the magnitude and rate of global warming, including some of the consequences such as rising seas, increasing extreme precipitation and stronger hurricanes, decades before it happened. ‘they cannot be observed. Klaus Hasselmann and Suki Manabe were pioneers in this field and personal role models for me, ”said German climatologist and modeler Stefan Rahmstorf.

“We [are] now seeing how their first predictions come true one after the other, ”said Rahmstorf.

When climatologists and former US Vice President Al Gore won the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize, some non-scientists who deny global warming rejected it as a political prize. Perhaps anticipating the controversy, members of the Swedish Academy of Sciences, which awards the Nobel Prize, pointed out that it was a science prize.

“It’s a physics prize. What we’re saying is that climate modeling is firmly based on physical theory and well-known physics, ”Swedish physicist Thors Hans Hansson said at the announcement.

It is common for several scientists working in related fields to share the prize.

While Mr Parisi’s work did not focus on the climate, he spoke of the pressing issues facing Earth after the announcement.

“It is very urgent that we take very strong decisions and that we move at a very sustained pace” in the fight against global warming, he said.

When asked if he expected to get the prize, Mr Parisi said: “I knew there was a sizable possibility.”

Mr. Hasselmann, for his part, expressed his perplexity.

“I don’t really understand it, but it’s fantastic,” he told Swedish news agency TT. “I heard it just five minutes ago. I’m still trying to figure it out.

“I don’t think I’ve done too much research in my life, but I had a lot of fun doing it with my colleagues,” he continued. “It is enough for me that my research shows that humans have really affected the climate. “

In Mr. Manabe’s hometown, the mayor announced his victory.

“I represent all the residents of the city to warmly congratulate Dr Shukuro Manabe,” said Minoru Shinohara, Mayor of Shikokuchuo City. Mr. Manabe grew up in the city’s Shingu Village.

The prestigious award is accompanied by a gold medal and 10 million Swedish kronor (over $ 1.14 million). The prize money comes from a bequest left by the creator of the prize, Swedish inventor Alfred Nobel, who died in 1895.

On Monday, the Nobel Committee awarded the Physiology or Medicine Prize to Americans David Julius and Ardem Patapoutian for their findings on how the human body perceives temperature and touch it.

Over the next few days, prizes will also be awarded for outstanding work in the fields of chemistry, literature, peace and economics.

This story was reported by The Associated Press. Seth Borenstein reported from Kensington, Maryland. PA journalists Frank Jordans and Kerstin Sopke in Berlin, Jan M. Olsen in Copenhagen, Denmark, and Mari Yamaguchi in Tokyo contributed to this report.


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Nobel Prize in Physics rewards trio for contributions to climate models

Stockholm

Three scientists on Tuesday won the Nobel Prize in Physics for work that brought order to apparent disorder, helping to explain and predict the complex forces of nature, including expanding our understanding of climate change.

Syukuro Manabe from Japan and Klaus Hasselmann from Germany have been cited for their work in “physical modeling of the Earth’s climate, quantifying variability and reliably predicting global warming.” The second half of the prize was awarded to Giorgio Parisi from Italy for “the discovery of the interplay of disorder and fluctuations in physical systems from atomic scale to planetary scale”.

Faced with the challenges of climate change, Hasselmann told The Associated Press that he “would rather not have global warming and no Nobel Prize”.

Across the Atlantic at the same time, Manabe noted in an interview that it is easier to understand the physics behind climate change than to get the world to do something.

The three scientists work on what are called “complex systems”, of which climate is just one example. But the price comes with two separate fields of study that are opposed in many ways but share the goal of making sense of what seems random and chaotic in a way that can be predicted.

Mr. Parisi’s work focuses on subatomic particles and is somewhat esoteric and academic, while the work of Mr. Manabe and Mr. Hasselmann focuses on the large-scale global forces that shape our daily lives.

The judges said that Mr. Manabe, 90, and Mr. Hasselmann, 89, “laid the foundation for our knowledge of Earth’s climate and how human actions influence it.”

Beginning in the 1960s, Mr. Manabe, now based at Princeton University in New Jersey, created the first climate models that predicted what would happen to the globe when carbon dioxide built up in the atmosphere. Scientists have shown for decades that carbon dioxide traps heat, but Dr. Manabe’s work has put details and predictions into this general knowledge. This allowed scientists to ultimately show how climate change will get worse and how quickly depending on the amount of carbon pollution being spat out.

About a decade later, Mr Hasselmann, of the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology in Hamburg, Germany, helped explain why climate models can be reliable despite the seemingly chaotic nature of the weather. He also developed ways to look for specific signs of human influence on the climate.

Mr Hasselmann said the problem with climate change is that it exists on such a large time scale that people find it difficult to understand it.

“People tend to deny the problem until it’s too late,” Hasselman said.

During this time, M. Parisi of the Sapienza University in Rome, “built a deep physical and mathematical model” which has enabled us to understand complex systems in fields as different as mathematics, biology, neuroscience and science. machine learning.

His work originally focused on what is known as spin glass, a type of metal alloy in which atoms are arranged in such a way as to change the magnetic properties of the material in seemingly random ways, which baffled scholars. scientists. Mr Parisi, 73, was able to uncover hidden patterns behind this behavior, theories that could be applied to other areas of research as well.

In their work, physicists used complex mathematics to explain and predict what appeared to be chaotic forces of nature in computer simulations, called modeling. This modeling has given scientists such a solid understanding of these forces that they can accurately predict the weather one week per week and warn of the climate decades in advance.

“Physics is about modeling, finding mathematical stories, their equations that accurately reflect the workings of nature and allow humanity to use science, as its instinct for survival,” said Jim Gates, physicist at Brown University.

Some non-scientists have ridiculed modeling, but it has been key to how the world tackles one of its biggest problems – climate change.

“Physically-based climate models have been able to predict the magnitude and rate of global warming, including some of the consequences such as rising seas, increasing extreme precipitation and stronger hurricanes, decades before it happened. ‘they cannot be observed. Klaus Hasselmann and Suki Manabe were pioneers in this field and personal role models for me, ”said German climatologist and modeler Stefan Rahmstorf.

“We [are] now seeing how their first predictions come true one after the other, ”said Rahmstorf.

When climatologists and former US Vice President Al Gore won the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize, some non-scientists who deny global warming rejected it as a political prize. Perhaps anticipating the controversy, members of the Swedish Academy of Sciences, which awards the Nobel Prize, pointed out that it was a science prize.

“It’s a physics prize. What we’re saying is that climate modeling is firmly based on physical theory and well-known physics, ”Swedish physicist Thors Hans Hansson said at the announcement.

It is common for several scientists working in related fields to share the prize.

While Mr Parisi’s work did not focus on the climate, he spoke of the pressing issues facing Earth after the announcement.

“It is very urgent that we take very strong decisions and that we move at a very sustained pace” in the fight against global warming, he said.

When asked if he expected to get the prize, Mr Parisi said: “I knew there was a sizable possibility.”

Mr. Hasselmann, for his part, expressed his perplexity.

“I don’t really understand it, but it’s fantastic,” he told Swedish news agency TT. “I heard it just five minutes ago. I’m still trying to figure it out.

“I don’t think I’ve done too much research in my life, but I had a lot of fun doing it with my colleagues,” he continued. “It is enough for me that my research shows that humans have really affected the climate. “

In Mr. Manabe’s hometown, the mayor announced his victory.

“I represent all the residents of the city to warmly congratulate Dr Shukuro Manabe,” said Minoru Shinohara, Mayor of Shikokuchuo City. Mr. Manabe grew up in the city’s Shingu Village.

The prestigious award is accompanied by a gold medal and 10 million Swedish kronor (over $ 1.14 million). The prize money comes from a bequest left by the creator of the prize, Swedish inventor Alfred Nobel, who died in 1895.

On Monday, the Nobel Committee awarded the Physiology or Medicine Prize to Americans David Julius and Ardem Patapoutian for their findings on how the human body perceives temperature and touch it.

Over the next few days, prizes will also be awarded for outstanding work in the fields of chemistry, literature, peace and economics.

This story was reported by The Associated Press. Seth Borenstein reported from Kensington, Maryland. PA journalists Frank Jordans and Kerstin Sopke in Berlin, Jan M. Olsen in Copenhagen, Denmark, and Mari Yamaguchi in Tokyo contributed to this report.


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How scientists can predict the future: the importance of climate models

Part of a scientist’s duty in today’s disinformation environment is to persuade the public about how science works. Making precise and measured projections about the future is necessary to convince the public to believe in science. Is it possible to make accurate predictions about how the world will look 50 years from now?

(Photo: Photo by Justin Sullivan / Getty Images)

Use of climate models

Earth

(Photo: Pixabay)

For more than 50 years, scientists have relied on climate models. The models produce representations of physical conditions on Earth and simulations of the current climate using mathematical equations and hundreds of data points. To create longer-term projections, climate models increasingly incorporate atmospheric, terrestrial and oceanic factors.

Climate models predict how the typical circumstances of a region will change over the next few decades and what the climate was like before people started recording it.

The first climate model was built over 50 years ago, at the very beginning of climate research. Increases in temperature and changes in oceanic and atmospheric currents are expected to contribute to climate change in the model. He helped scientists determine how the ocean and the atmosphere interacted to impact the climate.

Related Article: 2050 Earth Map Predicts Our Dark Future Brought By Climate Change

Climate awareness.

WEATHER STORM UNITED STATES (IDA)

(Photo: Photo by PATRICK T. FALLON / AFP via Getty Images)

According to a survey by the Pew Research Center, most Americans are already aware of the consequences of climate change on their environment. Individuals, businesses and governments, on the other hand, must “adapt to a fundamentally and dangerously changing climate,” according to Cascio.

People need to consider the climate in all of their important decisions, including whether or not to have children, which car to buy, how to invest, and when and where to buy a home. In addition, governments are making decisions that will significantly influence the future of entire countries, such as investing in alternative energies or limiting greenhouse gas emissions.

Climate models are necessary for scientists to understand the future climate. Hausfather was the lead researcher in a study that examined the accuracy of early climate models. According to experts, the majority of models were quite accurate. Some of the findings were included in the report of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

According to the researchers, 14 of the first 17 climate models are “substantially similar” to the warming observed in the real world. Given the lack of observable evidence of warming at the time, the accuracy is exceptionally unique. For example, the cooling impact of atmospheric aerosols was predicted by one of the first climate models established in 1971.

Develop better models

Despite the potential of climate models demonstrated by Hausfather’s work, these models continue to have shortcomings, especially with regard to the unpredictability of future emissions. Additionally, when climate models are pushed outside of their specified limits, accuracy issues arise. Climate models base their predictions on physical circumstances observed in nature rather than the statistical probability of countering it.

Cascio and other futurists place scientific facts in a larger framework, making predictions based on climate change, new technological advances, and political and social movements, while climatologists focus on physics to create projections for the future climate. Cascio defined Futurism as “a fundamentally anticipatory story”.

Also Read: NASA Reports Earth Trapped ‘Unprecedented’ Amount of Heat in Energy Imbalance

For more environmental news, be sure to follow Nature World News!

© 2021 NatureWorldNews.com All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.


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How Scientists Predict Climate Scenarios – Enter the World of Climate Models

The climate of our planet is an extremely complex subject. Of course, the underlying principles are simple, but incorporating the interaction between all the different elements is a very difficult task. To assess the situation on a large scale, researchers often turn to what are called climate models.

A climate model is a quantitative simulation of the elements of our planet’s climate. When researchers develop models, they divide the planet into a grid, apply known equations from the parameters they consider, and “run” the model to evaluate the results. Models can be more or less detailed, can span the past or the future, and can be localized or planetary.

This world map shows the evolution of average annual precipitation projected by the GFDL CM2.1 model for the 21st century (Credit: NOAA Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory, via Wikimedia Commons).

Fill gaps

Climate models are essential tools for climatologists as they attempt to make sense of the complex dynamics of Earth’s climate system. One of the reasons is that we don’t have access to all the data. We have started observing the planet’s climate relatively recently, we haven’t covered the whole planet with meteorological instruments, so there are a lot of gaps in our climate data. Models can help fill these gaps.

Official temperature records began in 1880 in the UK and surface observations developed over time to become the integrated system we have today with satellites, buoys, planes and stations around the planet.

But while our ability to collect data has improved dramatically, especially with the advent of satellite data, the planet is so big that even with all of these data points we have, there are still many gaps to be filled.

Alder, Jay, Simulated Global Temperature Change. usgs.gov. United States Geological Survey (USGS) (May 26, 2016). Archived from the original on August 23, 2019.

It is important to delve into the concept of climate. Officially, the World Meteorological Organization defines climate as “the measure of the average and variability of relevant amounts of certain variables (such as temperature, precipitation, or wind) over a period of time, officially declared within 30 years “.

In other words, the climate is the reason why the inhabitants of the Caribbean hardly have warm jackets; time, on the other hand, is what happens today. Weather is an event, climate is a long term trend.

Complexity

Horizontal resolutions taken into account in the current higher resolution models and in the very high resolution models currently tested: (a) Illustration of the
topography at a resolution of 87.5 × 87.5 km; (b) identical to (a) but for a resolution of 30.0 × 30.0 km. Source: IPCC

One of the reasons that models are so complicated is that they have to incorporate multiple types of data. Climate models should be a good representation of the physical world, which involves things like winds, currents, chemistry, and many more.

This means that we cannot use a model that approximates the oceans to giant swimming pools. Oceans have currents and other complex mechanisms that play a role in climate governance – and a comprehensive model should incorporate these elements. essential for understanding the climate.

Resolution is also a problem. Models can’t have rough representations, you can’t make a climate model that assumes the Andes are just a bunch of rectangular walls on the coast of South America – we need better resolution to that our model be precise.

It’s like Lego sculptures, if you have a lot of small bricks you can make a good Millennium Falcon, a few big bricks won’t be able to build the round shape of the ship. The resolution has increased over the years as we now have better computers to do the math.

However, this does not mean that the old models did not make good predictions, quite the contrary. Models from 1970 to 2007 were found to be consistent with observed global average surface temperatures. However, models that incorporate more parameters and have better resolution tend to produce better results.

Are they good enough?

No model is a perfect representation of reality. But they don’t need to be and can still help us understand how our planet’s climate will change.

One way to test a climate model is to use old data and see if it “predicts” climatic phenomena that we already knew occurred. Put simply, you claim to have built the model a few years ago and see if it successfully predicts something that has already happened. This is called a “hindcast” as opposed to a “forecast”. Here is an example.

In 1991, there was a worldwide impact eruption on Mount Pinatubo; its volcanic ash reached 35 km in the atmosphere. Scientists knew that the number of ashes would be enough to cool the atmosphere. James Hansen and his team took the opportunity to validate their climate model, to see if it was good enough to show the cooling effect.

With 6 months of actual data after the eruption, scientists were able to compare model temperatures and observations. The results were almost as expected – the model predicted a cooling effect; it wasn’t a perfect prediction, but it was good enough. Despite the complexity of simultaneous events on a global scale, the climate model has a definite cooling trend.

The models that were used in the 4th Assessment Report of the IPCC can be assessed by comparing their predictions over about 20 years with what actually happened. In this figure, the multi-model set and the average of all models are plotted alongside the surface temperature index (GISTEMP) from NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS). The climatic factors were known for the “indicative” period (before 2000) and forecast for the period beyond. Temperatures are plotted against a 1980-1999 baseline. Credit: Gavin Schmidt

Scenarios

Models are a way to do an experiment, we can’t actually test whether the effects of CO2 emissions on the atmosphere by filling it with gas, we don’t have an atmosphere in a lab to test, so we model and simulate scenarios. You get the equation and add the amount of CO2 emissions per year, the model gets the number and works with it to tell you by how much the temperature will rise.

This is what the IPCC scenarios are for. These scenarios are the “ifs”: “if we continue to emit the same amount of greenhouse gases (GHGs) that we are currently emitting, what happens? “,” If we increase GHG emissions, what happens? “And” if we reduce GHG emissions, what happens? These scenarios are then used to predict different time periods, in almost 20 years, medium term in 40 years and longer term in 100 years.

With these scenarios, we can decide our actions for the future and find solutions to avoid extreme weather events like the recent ones. Since we have climate models to help us, we must act, because there is no doubt that humanity is the cause of the negative impact on the climate.

So what do the models tell us for the future?

We are in the midst of a global warming effect, and there is overwhelming evidence that we are the cause, through our greenhouse gas emissions. These gases heat the atmosphere, which in turn warms the entire planet.

Models can give us a lot of detail on how this will play out (spoiler alert: this is bad) and what we can do to stop it. For example, models suggest that if we do not act, our planet will experience a warming of more than 4 degrees Celsius. With current policies, we are heading towards around 3 degrees Celsius, and if all countries meet their current commitments and targets, we are heading towards 2.4 degrees.

However, the models also show that if we exceed 2 degrees, we are already causing catastrophic damage to the planet. Since we are already at one degree of heat since before the industrial age, our best bet would be to keep the heat below 1.5 degrees. The models also show how we can do it, but whether we as a society actually come together and do it is a whole different matter.

Basically, climate models are a tool. They are a tool to help us better understand the planet, the effects we have on it, and how we can remedy the damage we cause. They’re not perfect, but they’re extremely useful, and we’d do well to keep an eye on them as we navigate the dangers of a hot climate.


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