12/9/2016 3:05:51 PM News

Scientists take 'blue-action' to help society cope with Arctic climate changes

Blue Action

While the Arctic faces rapid warming and less sea ice currently covers the Arctic Ocean than ever before at this time of the year, an international partnership launches a major project to improve our detailed understanding of the processes and impacts of this changing climate and to construct better long-term forecast systems for the increasingly extreme weather of the Arctic and the wider northern hemisphere.

Blue-Action is a four-year research and innovations project funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 programme with €7.5 million investment. It brings together 116 experts from 40 organisations in 17 countries on three continents working in academia, local authorities and maritime industries.

Pooling their expertise, skills, approaches and networks, the partners aim to improve how we describe, model and predict the weather and climate on seasonal to decadal time scales in the Arctic and over the northern hemisphere. This information will allow communities and businesses in Eurasia and North America to develop and plan their activities better.

"We will deliver this by synthesizing observations, assessing model performance, conducting coordinated multi-model sensitivity experiments, reducing and evaluating the uncertainty in prediction systems and developing new initialization techniques," explains Dr Daniela Matei from the Max-Planck Institute for Meteorology in Hamburg, one of two coordinators of the project.

Professor Stuart Cunningham and his team from SAMS will be involved in investigating lower latitude drivers of Arctic changes while Dr Raeanne Miller from their consultancy subsidiary SAMS Research Services Ltd will lead on the communications, dissemination, engagement and exploitation for the entire project.

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