Conference theme

Where atmosphere, sea and land meet: bridging between sciences, applications and stakeholders

ECAC - Climate: chaired by Inge Auer (ZAMG Austria)

All components of the Earth system interact in the climate system: the sun, atmosphere, land, sea, cryosphere, and biosphere. Climate change and its impacts must therefore be studied and assessed by considering all these interacting components together. This will support the various stakeholders, practitioners and decision makers - throughout their various levels and sectors of activities - to mitigate as far as possible future environmental change and to adapt where and when necessary.

Historically, many major centres of economic and cultural activities have developed in coastal areas (currently nearly 50% of Europe population live within 50 km from the coast). Therefore, many issues on safety, socio-economic impacts and infrastructure investments are particularly urgent in coastal areas. These are linked to the changing atmospheric and oceanic circulation, sea level rise, extreme events, floods and landslides.

The ECAC theme 2016 explores these intertwined issues with special emphasis on sea-atmosphere-land interactions and transitions. Assessing and predicting the evolution of the environment and impacts will have to go hand-in-hand with developing solutions supporting risk assessment, preparedness and mitigation.

Applications of meteorology (AM): chaired by Will Lang (UK MetOffice)

The AM programme explores the all-important interfaces between meteorology and the users of our weather and climate services. We discuss the systems and skills which can translate complex data into benefits for governments, commercial customers and the general public, with a particular emphasis on high-impact weather and its effects on transport networks. We also consider the growing need to combine meteorology with social sciences to maximise the benefits of new science and technology.

The atmospheric system and its interactions (ASI): chaired by Renate Hagedorn (DWD Germany)

The ASI session programme is a platform addressing our understanding, observing and modelling capacities of atmospheric processes, the water cycle and physiographic surface conditions at all scales, including the various feedback mechanisms and an integrated earth system approach.

The ASI sessions thus mostly cover basic scientific activities upstream of those addressed in the NWP, OBS, ECAM and CL programmes, but without forgetting potential applications for a broad range of services and sectors. The ASI sessions also provide plenty of interfaces for related sciences and applications: hydrology, agrometeorology, air quality and atmospheric composition, biometeorology, space weather, renewable energy potential, urban development, etc.

Communication and education (CE): chaired by Tanja Cegnar (SEA Slovenia)

The CE programme provides a platform for discussions on the provision and dissemination of meteorological and climate information to society. This includes strategic issues such as the development of adaptation strategies and communication within and through all types of media. Far-reaching challenges will also be discussed such as the role of meteorology and atmospheric sciences in education and training, and important aspects of career development.

Communication and interpretation of uncertainty in seasonal prediction and climate projections will also be addressed.

Measurements and observations (OBS): chaired by Frank Berich (DWD Germany)

Observations are the basis for understanding, monitoring and forecasting the state, trends and sudden events of the complex Earth system and its interacting subsystems such as the atmosphere, hydrosphere, cryosphere, biosphere and pedosphere. Various measurement techniques and strategies estimate different parameters, properties and scales of the Earth system. Moreover, the eve -increasing resolution of models requires the continuous evolution of the representativeness of observing data assimilated into models in order to cope with the necessity of representing more processes and interactions but at the same time less parametrisations and more direct simulations.

It is thus essential to establish a multi-disciplinary dialogue between observation providers, technology developers and users of observations for more accurate, comparable and better targeted observations for the benefit of atmospheric, meteorological, climate and related sciences. Sessions under this programme group intend to bridge this gap and promote new developments in the field.

Numerical weather prediction (NWP): chaired by Andrea Montani (ARPA-SIMC, Italy)

The emphasis of the NWP programme is on the development and operational use of numerical models:

  • Studies on efficient and robust numerical schemes in super-computing environments, modelling of processes relevant to weather forecasting, data assimilation, the use of observations, as well as probabilistic techniques.
  • Use of tools developed for specific downstream applications of NWP forecasts.
  • Operational interpretation and use of NWP outputs, including automatic interpretation algorithms, interpretation by forecasters and challenges connected with the provision of high resolution deterministic and probabilistic products to users.

NWP activities include both research and operational aspects. The operational aspects involve the forecasters and increasingly end-users.