RCM conference gathered researchers in Lund

Climate modellers from all over the world were gathered in Lund in June for the conference 21st Century Challenges in Regional Climate Modelling.

 

The workshop is a follow-up to the regional climate modelling workshops held in Lund 2004 and 2009. Developments and progress achieved in the last five years are being presented and discussed along with expected future challenges related to regional climate modelling. The meeting covers a wide range of RCM-related topics, from basic research - such as theoretical aspects of numerics and parameterisations - to applications.

Mistra-SWECIA's Ben Smith held a keynote presentation on the representation of land use dynamics in regional climate models. Whereas many global climate models now include representations of vegetation dynamics and land use change and the associated interactions with climate, regional climate models are only just starting to delve into this area, Mistra-SWECIA's own RCA-GUESS model being an early example. Published results from RCA-GUESS demonstrate that climate-driven changes in vegetation patterns, for example in the Arctic, can significantly affect the climate via feedbacks mediated by changes in albedo and evapotranspiration. Preliminary results from an application over Africa suggest that changes in circulation feedbacks may also be triggered by vegetation adjustments in a tropical context. Ben pointed out land cover feedbacks typically operate at regional scale, may be significant for future climate development, and are amenable to investigation using regional climate (Earth) system models.

The workshop is jointly organized by Lund University, SMHI, DMI and HZG with support from the International BALTEX Secretariat.