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CliC News

Here's what has been happening lately in CliC. Let us know if you have things to share.

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Future Directions for the World Climate Research Programme

-By Guy Brasseur and David Carlson, WCRP

WCRPAs climate uncertainties increase on many fronts, the international climate research community is taking stock of its current research efforts and developing an evolving set of strategies to address these uncertainties with relevance and skill. The community displays a strong sense of urgency and commitment, even in the face of substantial social, political, and financial obstacles. However, representatives and leaders of the community must address cuts and redistribution of research funding, support the efforts of numerous volunteers, and develop and disseminate a compelling message to sustain the focus and commitment of this valuable research community.

With partners from the national and international assessments community, climate scientists urgently need to evaluate recent research as well as scientific and political outcomes from a mutual and timely vantage point: to view assessment report products in light of ongoing research and, conversely, to scrutinize the directions of ongoing climate research following recent national and international assessments. However, valid concerns have emerged within the research community about the present focus and impact of climate research and about the probable effort and impact of subsequent assessments. These concerns center around the quality of subsequent products: How can the research community ensure substantial rather than incremental improvements, and will the impacts justify the efforts?

To address these concerns, science leaders from the World Climate Research Programme (WCRP) and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) are in deep collaboration. Together, they have outlined several knowledge gaps.

Speaking for WCRP, we recognize that addressing these knowledge gaps requires continual reexamination. WCRP’s evolution must ensure relevant and timely science outcomes in the context of immediate and longer-term efforts to mitigate climate change while recognizing political and funding challenges.

Read the full article here.

Citation: Brasseur, G., and D. Carlson (2015), Future directions for the World Climate Research Programme, Eos, 96, doi:10.1029/2015EO033577. Published on 30 July 2015.

Report Available: GlacierMIP Kick-off Workshop at IUGG 2015 in Prague

-GlacierMIP is a CliC Targeted Activity

GlacierMIPKickOff Day2 1The report of the Glacier Model Intercomparison Project (MIP) Kick-off Workshop is now available. The Workshop was held on June 26 & 27, 2015, during the 26th General Assembly of the International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics (IUGG) in Prague. The objective of the workshop was to lay out the overall plan for GlacierMIP over the coming years. This meeting brought together – for the first time – many of the participants and provided a forum to specify further details of our planned activities. The goals were met by defining a list of activities for the future and in particular defining the next steps for an intercomparison of existing global model results.

During the workshop, it was agreed that there will be three tiers to this targeted activity:

  • Tier 1: Intercomparison of published results
  • Tier 2: Dedicated experiments for projections (and potentially, reconstructions)
  • Tier 3: Dedicated sensitivity experiments.


More details on what happened at the Workshop are available in the report. The GlacierMIP participants will meet again at the 2015 American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting in San Francisco, in December (date  to be determined).

[GlacierMIP Kick-off Workshop Webpage]
[GlacierMIP Website]

Report Available: Southern Ocean community comment on the Year of Polar Prediction Implementation Plan

-The Southern Ocean Region Panel is a CLIVAR/CliC/SCAR activity

SouthernoceanOnYoppThe Southern Ocean community comment on the Year of Polar Prediction Implementation Plan is now available online. The Southern Ocean Observing System (SOOS), the CLIVAR-CliC-SCAR Southern Ocean Region Panel (SORP), and the Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research (SCAR) contributed to this report.

This Working Paper is designed to highlight key Southern Ocean field and modelling capabilities of relevance to YOPP, identify key areas for collaborative efforts, and raise the imperative of the Southern Ocean’s role in prediction capabilities.

Citation: Newman, Louise et al.. (2015). Southern Ocean community comment on the Year of Polar Prediction Implementation Plan. Zenodo. 10.5281/zenodo.27261

Deadline Approaching-Workshop: Greenland Ice Sheet Ocean Observing System (GrIOOS), December 2015

GRISOA two day workshop will be held on December 12-13, 2015, in San Francisco, USA, to discuss the design and implementation of a Greenland Ice Sheet Ocean Observing System (GrIOOS). The aim of GrIOOS is to provide long-term time series of critical /in situ/ glaciological, oceanographic and atmospheric parameters at several key locations around Greenland. Observations will provide much needed information on the time-evolving relationships between the different climate forcings and glacier flow. GrIOOS was one of the key priorities identified at the 2013 US CLIVAR-sponsored International Workshop on Greenland Ice Sheet Ocean Interactions (GRISO) organized and summarized in the workshop report.

Specific goals of the GrIOOS workshop are to discuss:

  • the motivation for specific measurements;
  • integration with existing related long-term measurements around Greenland;
  • identification of key sites;
  • identification of instrumentation.

A workshop report will be drafted after the workshop and circulated for community input.

The workshop will be limited to ~35 participants. Expressions of interest to attend are solicited from the international community at this time (one page maximum). These should be sent to by *August 23, 2015* and state clearly the proposed contribution to the workshop. Expressions of interest from groups representing a particular discipline, technique, or field site are strongly encouraged. The Workshop Steering Committee (see below) will select participants to represent the glaciological, oceanographic, climate, and instrumentation engineering research communities, with special attention to including early-career investigators, women, and underrepresented minorities. Attendees will be notified in September 2015.

The workshop is sponsored in part by SEARCH (Study of Environmental Arctic Change), CliC (Climate and Cryosphere) and GRISO (Greenland Ice Ocean Observing Network). Participants will be expected to cover their own travel to San Francisco (the workshop precedes the AGU Fall Meeting) but some funding will be available for the extra accommodation and meal costs.

Steering Committee:
Jakob Abermann (Asiaq, Greenland)
Andreas Peter Ahlstrøm (GEUS, DK)
Gordon Hamilton (UMaine, USA)
Patrick Heimbach (UT Austin & MIT, USA)
Ruth Mottram (DMI, DK)
Sophie Nowicki (NASA Goddard, USA)
Ted Scambos (NSIDC, USA),
Fiamma Straneo (WHOI, USA)
David Sutherland (UOregon, USA)
Martin Truffer (UAF, USA)

Report Available: ESA-CliC Earth Observation and Arctic Science Priorities

ESA CliC group photoThe European Space Agency and the Climate and Cryosphere project are pleased to present the publication of “Earth Observation and Arctic Science Priorities”. This report resulted from several consultations with the cryosphere community including a workshop held in January at the Fram Centre in Tromsø, Norway. More information on the meeting, including presentations, can be found here: http://www.climate-cryosphere.org/meetings/past/2015a/esa-arctic-2015.

The outcome of the meeting and its conclusions will contribute to guide scientific activities on Arctic research, including ESA’s programmatic priorities for the time frame 2017-2021. Despite not covering all components of the Arctic cryosphere, discussions covered a fairly large spectrum of research areas where EO may contribute.

We thank the workshop participants and many others in the cryosphere community who contributed substantially to this report.

Citation: Baeseman, J and D.Fernandez Prieto Eds. 2015. ESA-CliC Earth Observation and Arctic Science Priorities. Zenodo. 10.5281/zenodo.27538


Antarctic Sea Ice Variability Workshop - Call for Nominations

-This is a CliC sponsored workshop

AcademiesOfScienceThe Polar Research Board (PRB) and the Ocean Studies Board (OSB) are pleased to announce a new National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine workshop on ‘Antarctic Sea Ice Variability in the Southern Climate-Ocean System’. This workshop is also sponsored by NASA, NSF, and ONR. It will assess current understanding of processes driving Antarctic sea ice changes--including controls on decadal-scale growth and recent surge in Antarctic sea ice extent, whether or not these changes remain within the expected range of natural climate variability, and why climate models continue to fail in simulating them. The full Statement of Task for the workshop is available here. A designated rapporteur will prepare a summary report that provides a record of workshop presentations and discussions; it will not include consensus findings or recommendations.

Nominations for membership on the ad hoc committee that the Academies will appoint to plan the workshop are being sought. The committee of approximately 5 members will organize the workshop and serve as session facilitations during the event. For the planning committee, people with expertise pertaining to: ocean and sea ice observations (in situ and remote sensing); Antarctic climate and oceanography; ocean, climate or sea ice modeling; process studies of the coupled sea ice - ice sheet - ocean - atmosphere system; prediction and attribution of Antarctic sea ice changes are encouraged to apply. Self-nominations are welcome.

You can submit your nominations via a web-form here (preferred), or send your nominations directly to Michael Hudson. If submitting nominations directly, send the person’s name, affiliation, contact information, area of expertise, and a brief statement on why the person’s expertise is relevant to the topic. The deadline for submissions is Thursday, August 17.

The workshop will likely be held in the first two weeks of January 2016.



ISMIP6 Workshop, August 19, 2015, in Cambridge, UK

-Contributed by Sophie Nowicki - ISMIP6 is a CliC sponsored activity

ismip6logo BWA workshop will be held in Cambridge, UK on Wednesday afternoon, 19 August 2015 from 2pm – 5:30 pm in Churchill College (Storey’s Way, Cambridge CB3 0DS, UK), during the free afternoon of the International Glaciological Society’s International Symposium on Contemporary Ice-Sheet Dynamics.

This meeting will focus on one of the components of ISMIP6: the standalone ice sheet models driven offline by surface climatic forcing from climate models. Past efforts, such as SeaRISE and ice2sea, have indicated that different methods for initialization of ice sheet models (interglacial spinup, assimilation of present day observations, or a combination of both) may play an important role in the spread in projection of ice sheet evolution, and thus may contribute to the uncertainty in projection of sea level. ISMIP6 is therefore designing an experiment that focuses on the initialization of ice sheet models.

The agenda for the meeting is:
- Presentation of the responses to the initialization questionnaire, with a particular focus on datasets being used.
- Discuss the current design of the experiment on initialization, which builds on the feedback received at the ISMIP6 Splinter meeting at EGU (April 2015).
- Identify synergies between ISMIP6 and ISMASS.  

The initialization questionnaire for ice sheet models has been send to the ISMIP6 mailing list, but can also be obtained here. It should be returned to Tony Payne ideally by 27 July 2015, so that your responses can be included in the workshop.

SOOS/WCRP/ESA workshop on Southern Ocean air-sea fluxes in Frascati in September 2015

soosThe SOOS/WCRP/ESA workshop on Southern Ocean air-sea fluxes:Strategies and Requirements for Detecting Physical and Biogeochemical Exchanges:Strategies and Requirements for Detecting Physical and Biogeochemical Exchanges will be held in Frascati, Italy, 21-23 September, 2015.

The workshop is motivated by a goal to improve air-sea flux estimates in the Southern Ocean and Antarctic marginal seas, though the issues addressed in the workshop will also have a global reach.  A 5-part agenda is anticipated:
1. Science applications for air-sea flux estimates.
2. A brief review of challenges associated with existing flux products
3. New opportunities that will enable forward progress (including in situ observations, remote sensing, assimilation/modeling).
4. Workshop outcome #1:  Defining requirements for essential climate variables and essential ocean variables for air-sea exchange.
5. Workshop outcome #2:  Planning for a pilot observing system

Details about the workshop, including a registration form, are posted on the SOOS web site.

The deadline for registration is August 15, 2015. There is no registration fee for the workshop, but note that lunches and the conference dinner will be organized on a "no-host" basis.  Participants are responsible for their own travel and hotel arrangements; please see the website for more information on accommodation and transportation. A hotel and taxi booking form is available on the website as well.

WCRP/WWRP International Prize for Model Development 2015

1-wcrp-wwrpCall for Nominations – due date for nominations is 1 October 2015

As the demand for more accurate regional weather and seasonal predictions as well as climate projections increases the need to improve the weather and climate models that underpin those predictions and projections becomes more urgent.

In recognition of the essential role model development plays to weather and climate science, the WCRP and WWRP are seeking nominations for the “WCRP/WWRP International Prize for Model Development”. The prize will be awarded annually for an outstanding contribution to weather and climate model development by an early- to mid-career researcher. It comprises a certificate signed by the Chairs of the WCRP JSC and WWRP SSC as well as funding for the recipient to present the results of their research at a major relevant conference or meeting of their choice.

Selection Criteria:

Candidates should:

  1. Be within the first ten years of their career as measured by receipt of a PhD or equivalent highest qualification
  2. Have made a significant contribution to the development of a model with a demonstrable impact on the model results
  3. Have made a significant contribution to the wider community such as publications, editorships, organizing/convening activities, operational implementation or strong engagement in national and international modelling programmes

Selection process:

The candidates should be nominated by filling in the nomination form (PDF version) or (Word version) provided in the Appendix. This includes a statement from the proposer (preferably a person with a good knowledge of the candidates work) and as well as from a seconder. These statements should specifically address the above criteria. This should be supported by up to 3 papers or technical notes documenting the model improvement and evidence of the candidate’s individual contribution, as well as the candidate’s CV.

Nominations should be sent by email to the WCRP ( ) and WWRP ( ) offices at WMO and must be received before 1 October 2015. The winner will be announced within 6 weeks of the nomination closing date.

If no suitable candidate is found, the prize will not be awarded.