Logo of Science Foundation Ireland  Logo of the Higher Education Authority, Ireland7 CapacitiesGPGPU Research Projects
Ireland's High-Performance Computing Centre | ICHEC
Home | News | Infrastructure | Outreach | Services | Research | Support | Education & Training | Consultancy | About Us | Login
Weather02 category

Climate Change Report published with Met Éireann

Posted on 30 September 2013

ICHEC is delighted to announce that Mr. Alastair McKinstry and Dr. Paul Nolan, climate scientists at ICHEC, have worked in collaboration with Met Éireann and a number of national research centres to publish a climate change report.

Dr. Paul Nolan fourth from left and Mr. Alastair McKinstry fifth from left.

The report, Ireland's climate: the road ahead provides an overview of the expected changes in the future Irish climate due to global warming. The report was launched on September 25th at the Botanic Gardens, Glasnevin, Dublin, Ireland. The timing of the report is particularly appropriate as it coincides with the launch of the Fifth Assessment Report (AR5) of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. While AR5 addresses climate change on global scales, this report looks closer to home and provides an up-to-date assessment of Irish climate trends.

Global simulations were performed using EC-Earth, a model consisting of an atmosphere-land surface model coupled to an ocean and sea-ice model. Met Éireann and ICHEC were the two Irish institutions involved in both the development of the model and the running of simulations on the ICHEC and ECMWF supercomputers. The future simulations run from 2006 to 2100 based on the RCP4.5 (low to medium) and RCP8.5 (high) greenhouse gas emission scenarios. In addition, ICHEC acted as the data hub for the EC-Earth model data and facilitated the sharing of the data with international researchers via the CMIP5 project.

Key Global Temperature Projections

Mean global land temperatures are expected to rise by 2.7 degrees for the period 2071-2100 under a medium-low emission scenario (RCP4.5) and by up to 4.6 degrees under a high emission scenario (RCP8.5). Warming is greatest at high latitudes, leading to an accelerated loss of Arctic sea-ice cover.


Changes in 2071-2100 mean 2m temperature [°C] relative to 1961-1990 for (a) DJF RCP4.5, (b) JJA RCP4.5, (c) DJF RCP8.5 and (d) JJA RCP8.5

Global Climate downscaling simulations at ICHEC

The computational cost of running complex global climate models increases rapidly with the level of climate detail required. To achieve reasonable execution speeds, the model grid is set relatively coarse in comparison with operational weather forecast models. The relatively coarse grid (125km) used in the EC-Earth global simulations underestimates extremes and local effects, which are important for precipitation and wind modelling in particular.

To capture local climate details it is necessary to downscale the global model data to a finer grid over Ireland. This work was started at UCD and continued by researchers at ICHEC using the Max Planck Institute's ECHAM5 global climate model (GCM), the UK Met Office's HadGEM2-ES GCM, the CGCM3.1 GCM from the Canadian Centre for Climate Modelling and the EC-EARTH GCM. These global model data were downscaled using three different Regional Climate Models (RCMs): COSMO-CLM versions CLM3 & CLM4 and WRF. The COSMO-CLM simulations were run at 50km, 18km, 7km and 4km resolutions. The WRF simulations were run at 54km, 18km and 6km resolutions. To address the issue of model uncertainty, a large ensemble of RCM simulations were run. This was a substantial computational task and required extensive use of the ICHEC supercomputer systems over 3 to 4 years.

To create a large ensemble, the 4km, 6km and 7km resolution data were regridded to a common 7km grid over Ireland. The simulations were carried out using RCP4.5 and B1 greenhouse gas scenarios to create a "medium-low emission" ensemble while RCP8.5, A1B and A2 simulations were used to create a "high emission" ensemble. This Multi-Model Ensemble (MME) approach enables the uncertainty in RCM projections to be quantified, providing a measure of confidence in the predictions.

 


Projected mid-century temperature changes for the high emission ensemble; (a) the top 5% of summer highest daytime temperatures and (b) the lowest 5% of winter night-time temperatures.

 

Key Results for the Irish Climate

 

  • Mean temperatures are expected to increase by ~1.5°C by mid-century with the strongest signal seen during winter and summer.
  • Warming is enhanced for the extremes (i.e. hot or cold days) with highest daytime temperatures projected to rise by up to 2 degrees in summer and lowest night-time temperatures to rise by up to 2-3 degrees in winter (see above Figure).
  • Winters are expected to become wetter with increases of up to 14% in precipitation under the high 
emission scenarios by mid-century; summers will become drier (up to 20% reduction in precipitation under the high emission scenarios).
  • The frequency of heavy precipitation events during winter shows notable increases of up to 20%.
  • The models predict an overall increase (0 to 8%) in the energy content of the wind for the future _winter months and a decrease (4-14%) during the summer months.

 

The animation above presents an ICHEC visualization of Met Éireann EC-EARTH data. The annual 2m temperature change with respect to the 30-year baseline (1961-1990) is presented for both the RCP4.5 (medium) and RCP8.5 (high) scenarios.

The second visualization presents the Annual Sea Surface Temperature (SST) and Sea Ice Fraction for March and September. Because of the high heat capacity of water, the SST lags behind atmospheric temperatures. Hence, the artic sea ice is at a maximum during March and minimum during September.

Other Related News Reports

 

News & Events

News02 category Article by Irish Scientist Featured in The Journal of Chemical Physics
Article by Irish Scientist Featured in The Journal of Chemical Physics
Question02 category insideHPC Interview
ICHEC interview with noted HPC news site insideHPC
Wine01 category Internet Hall of Fame
Irishman inducted into Internet Hall of Fame
Weather01 category Irish Meteorological Society, March 20
ICHEC was invited to speak at the Irish Met Society’s series of public talks on March 20th, 2014. The event was held at the Custom House, Dublin. Dr. Paul Nolan, climate scientist at ICHEC, presented an overview of the research carried at ICHEC to forec
News01 category International HPC Summer School 2014
1-6 June, Budapest, Hungary
News01 category Irish Tier-2 HEI service now open on Fionn – the ICHEC Condominium Service 2013-2016
 
News02 category NUI Galway Joins Intel Parallel Computing Centre Programme to Boost Parallel Application Performance in High Performance Computing
Irish Centre for High End Computing (ICHEC) will host the research that has likely applications in materials science, meteorology and data analytics.
News01 category ICHEC at BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition 2014
Showcasing High-Performance Computing (HPC) at the BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition 2014
Weather01 category A State of the Art Air Pollution Forecast System for Ireland
NUI Galway implements Air Quality forecast on ICHEC systems
Hardware01 category Meet Fionn - Ireland’s Latest Supercomputer
ICHEC announce their latest supercomputer that will be available to research throughout Ireland.
People02 category ICHEC Industry Consultation Event
In collaboration with IDAC, the event addresses the importance of Computer Aided Engineering in particular to Engineering sectors such as Manufacturing, Environmental, Oil and Gas, Renewable Energy, Civil, Mechanical and Medical Devices.
Weather02 category Climate Change Report published with Met Éireann
Ireland's climate: the road ahead report provides an overview of the expected changes in the future Irish climate due to global warming.
News02 category The PRACE 8th Call for Project Access
This Call for Proposals targets large-scale, computationally intensive projects that would not be possible or productive without access to PRACE resources.
News01 category ICHEC delivers CUDA tutorials at XSEDE/PRACE/RIKEN Summer School in NYC
ICHEC was invited to deliver the CUDA tutorials at this year’s International Summer School on HPC Challenges in Computational Sciences, held June 23-28, 2013, in NYC
Hardware05 category PRACE Award to Dr. Turlough Downes
Irish team gets access to Europe's fastest computer
People02 category Ministerial launch of ICHEC's new funding cycle
Thursday 4th July, at the Royal Irish Academy, Dublin
News02 category Big Data Visualization with R
Hadley Wickham talks about Big Data Visualization with R
News01 category PRACE Autumn School 2013
23-27 Sep, Ljubljana, Slovenia
News01 category ICHEC at BTYSE'13
High-Performance Computing (HPC) Showcase at the BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition
News01 category ICHEC Receives Honours in 2012 HPCwire Readers’ Choice Awards
ICHEC has been recognised for the 'Most Innovative Use of HPC in Financial Services' in the prestigious HPCwire Readers' Choice Award
News02 category Research highlight
ICHEC, UCD and Sandia National Labs collaboration publish in Energies
Hardware03 category PRACE Preparatory Access Call
Continuous open call for preparatory proposals.