Climate models

ESA will host a flagship office to coordinate global climate models

TAMPA, Fla. — The European Space Agency announced Feb. 9 plans to host an international office to coordinate global climate modeling efforts for at least five years.

From March, the office of the World Climate Research Program (WCRP), which is partly sponsored by the United Nations World Meteorological Organization, will be housed alongside ESA’s existing climate office in Harwell, Australia. UK.

ESA said the new office will coordinate WCRP’s Climate Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP), which brings together modeling centers from 52 institutions in 26 countries that scientists use to predict climate change.

According to ESA, demand for CMIP products has increased in recent years to support climate negotiations.

Countries and private companies are also increasingly relying on climate models to manage the risks – and potential opportunities – associated with changes in the environment.

“With five years of initial funding, the office will be essential in ensuring that CMIP has the support needed to perform the next generation of climate projections and climate assessments, thereby also supporting the move towards more climate information. regional climate change,” said Detlef Stammer. , Chair of the WCRP Joint Scientific Committee.

The office will be run by staff provided by British professional services firm HE Space, which said it had won a five-year, four million euro ($4.6 million) contract from ESA.

HE Space said on February 9 that it had chosen Eleanor O’Rourke, currently a researcher for government-funded environmental organization Zero Waste Scotland, to lead a team for the new office to be announced later.

O’Rourke is a former director of the WCRP International Project Office for the Coordinated Regional Climate Downscaling Experiment, a WCRP framework for evaluating the performance of regional climate models.