Climate Scientists Identify Future Research Priorities
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Climate scientists identified future research priorities, based on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Fifth Assessment Report (AR5), during a workshop that was organized by the World Climate Research Programme (WCRP) and IPCC Working Group I (WG I).

wcrp-ipcc10 September 2014: Climate scientists identified future research priorities, based on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Fifth Assessment Report (AR5), during a workshop that was organized by the World Climate Research Programme (WCRP) and IPCC Working Group I (WG I). WGI released its report on ‘Climate Change 2013: The Physical Science Basis’ in September 2013.

The workshop, titled ‘IPCC AR5: Lessons Learnt for Climate Change Research and WCRP,’ convened from 8-10 September 2014, in Bern, Switzerland. It brought together approximately 80 scientists to discuss lessons learned from the WG1 AR5, as well as new research since its release and future priorities and directions for climate research. Thomas Stocker, University of Bern and IPCC WGI Co-Chair, stated that, with new results emerging every day about the climate system, “we need to continually assess where we stand and where we need to go next.”

The workshop aimed to: provide the space for informal exchanges and brainstorming among scientists involved in climate change research; take stock of key scientific issues identified through the AR5 in WCRP’s research plans; and assist the IPCC in reflecting on its future activities and assessments. Participants focused on: issues considered necessary for the progress of climate change research; and actions that may assist in the evaluation of risks and impacts, and the development of adaptation strategies.

The meeting included sessions on, inter alia: emerging themes and key uncertainties from the IPCC WGI AR5; the WCRP ‘Grand Science Challenges’ and strategies to address key uncertainties; and impacts, risk assessment and scenario development. Outcomes are expected to benefit the planning of major WCRP projects, particularly the ‘Grand Science Challenges,’ which are major areas where efforts in research, modeling, analysis and observations are needed, including sea-level change, water availability, disappearing snow and ice, changing atmospheric circulations, climate extremes and regional climate change. The workshop is also expected to feed into the progress report being prepared by the Global Climate Observing System (GCOS).

WCRP is an international programme jointly sponsored by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), the International Council for Science and the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). [WMO Press Release] [WCRP Workshop Website] [Workshop Agenda]

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