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Understanding our future climate better using regional climate projections

Mandira Singh Shrestha & Utsav Maden

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Spatial variation in average annual precipitation in the Koshi River basin (1976–2005) derived from 17 CORDEX regional climate models.

We partnered with the Met Office, UK’s national meteorological agency, to organize a training in June 2021 on spatial and temporal climate change analysis using CORDEX regional climate models over South Asia. Organized under the UK Aid-funded Asia Regional Resilience to a Changing Climate (ARRCC) programme, the training is part of the ARRCC’s capacity-building initiative aimed to strengthen the knowledge and capabilities of staff working at key national and regional institutions on analysing climate projections and producing information products for use in different sectoral applications.

The five-day training helped build participants’ knowledge and skills in analysing climate change projections using CORDEX regional climate model simulations. In particular, the training imparted knowledge on preparing climate model projections using 17 regional climate models, selecting representative models for an area of interest, and assessing spatial and temporal variability of present and future climate change over the defined area of interest.

virtual training
Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the training was organized virtually over the Microsoft Teams platform.

 

Our colleagues joined the virtual training along with other participants from the Department of Hydrology and Meteorology (DHM), the Central Department of Hydrology, and Meteorology and the Central Department of Environmental Science at Tribhuvan University; the World Food Programme; and Real Time Solutions Pvt. Ltd. Our resource persons, along with those from the Met Office and the Centre for Climate Change Research(CCCR) at the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM) – Pune, helped the participants prepare CORDEX datasets to analyse the Koshi River basin and compare these with reference datasets (APHRODITE). The resource persons also guided participants in using custom R scripts to visualize spatial and temporal variations in climate change projections and interpreting uncertainty in model results.

ICIMOD's Climate Data Download Tool
ICIMOD’s Climate Data Download Tool allows registered users to download sub-sets of the CORDEX datasets by defining their area of interest. Users can clip a subset of the larger CORDEX data set for a pre-defined river basin. Users can also draw a polygon and upload a KML file (to define their area of interest) to download the desired data sets. Visit http://rds.icimod.org/clim to register/download data sets.

 

The training also introduced participants to multiple tools that facilitate downloading of CORDEX data. Post-registration, CORDEX data sets can be readily downloaded from the Earth System Grid Federation (ESGF) node. Both CCCR/IITM and ICIMOD provide registered users options to customize data by defining an area of interest before downloading them. Joining the closing session of the virtual training, Indira Kadel, the DHM’s Senior Divisional Meteorologist and Section Chief of Climate Analysis Section, expressed her happiness to see university students and young professionals from Nepal broadening their knowledge and skills in climate change analysis. Kadel emphasized that further advanced trainings would be more helpful and requested the participants to continually practise the knowledge and skills gained from the training.

Between 2020 and 2022, we are working with the Met Office to develop and deliver a series of training activities to build the capacities of individuals at targeted institutions. This will help these individuals in delivering climate and information services for informed climate change responses in South Asia.

 

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