The new website by Meteotest and afca for Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S) makes the differences visible. It shows what the future climate might look like by showing sites where today's climate is analogous to the one projected – depending on the chosen scenario. The Copernicus Climate Change Service is implemented by ECMWF on behalf of the European Commission.
The objective of the tool is to close the gap between awareness of the impact of climate change and the scientific models of climate change scenarios. Although the climate is already changing, in many places of the world, the most severe changes are still to occur. The projected changes are not immediately understood by everyone. This tool shows you how the climate might change in future for specific user-defined sites and scenarios by identifying locations which have a similar climate already today.
The availability of such a web application makes on one hand the expected effects of climate change more understandable and visible for audiences, which are not familiar with the scientific aspects of climate change. On the other hand, it allows to investigate the way how people in such regions already today are adapting to the given climatic conditions (agriculture, transport, water supply, energy supply, building comfort and many more) and to use this experience to make better decisions regarding an adaptation to future climate change. In other words, it will allow learning from today's experience to create a better understanding of the future and foster to the new conditions.
Kentucky, New Jersey or Bath Beach, NY? Depending on the mitigation efforts New Yorker's will "land" in different regions.
The site shows the location selected by the user as well as the site that today has a similar (analogue) climate compared to future scenario at the user's location. The stronger the mitigation the closer the similar sites are. With no mitigation large distances are seen – showing the big differences of the climate to come with accordingly harmful pathways.
The tool is based on climate model data (CMIP5) from Copernicus Data Store (CDS) and includes precipitation, snow fall, humidity and air temperature. ERA5 reanalysis data from CDS have been used to correct and downscale models to 0.25x0.25°. The analogues are defined by Euclidian distances based on temperatures and precipitation.
Meteotest evaluated and prepared the climate model data (CMIP5) and programmed an API which quickly returns the three most similar sites based on their climate profile. It demonstrates the ability of Meteotest to handle large datasets and easily and quickly access them via API.
Afca designed the user experience and programmed the front end. The result is a website that is easy to use and understand – focused on educational purposes.
Head of Energy & Climate