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EU and Japan pool expertise for climate research

Japanese climate modelling experts are set to revolutionize climate research with an "Earth simulator", described as a "super super computer", which is expected to trivialise the performance of current computers.

With this in mind, European Union climate-modelling experts me...

2 March 1999 - 2 March 1999
Japan

Japanese climate modelling experts are set to revolutionize climate research with an "Earth simulator", described as a "super super computer", which is expected to trivialise the performance of current computers.

With this in mind, European Union climate-modelling experts met their Japanese counterparts in Tokyo at the beginning of March 1999 in the first EU-Japan workshop and symposium on climate change. This helped the experts to identify key recommendations for future research priorities, which include the need to increase climate-computing capacity in Europe.

Participants at the workshop identified an increasing gap between available super-computer resources and that necessary for addressing current scientific issues and concerns in climate research. There is a particular need for improvements to the resolution capability of models; both for ensemble calculations and for improved model physics and the inclusion of appropriate biological and chemical processes.

Those present at the workshop also agreed that the opportunities offered by the Earth simulator and the concurrent funding opportunities available from the EU's Energy, Environment and Sustainable Development Programme are promising incentives for individual and collaborative research. They therefore recommended that specific EU-Japan joint projects be considered including high-resolution and regional climate-change simulations to remove uncertainties and improve impact assessments.

Cooperative initiatives in the areas of data analysis and data assimilation would also be important, agreed the workshop participants. They particularly recommended the development of data-assimilation activities using both remote-sensing techniques and in-situ observations, including the use of surface and sub-surface ocean data.

A common EU-Japan interest to emerge during the workshop was mutual concern that the Indian Ocean represents a current gap in the Global Observing System. Participants therefore recommended the development of common initiatives in this area.

As a result of the workshop, an EU-Japan Working Group is likely to be established as a focal point to encourage continued collaboration in climate research.
For further information, please contact:

European Commission
Directorate General XII
Ib Troen
Scientific officer
Fax +32-2-2963024
E-mail: research@ec.europa.eu

or,

European Commission
Directorate General XII
Piia Huusela
Press Officer
Fax +32-2-2958220
E-mail: research@ec.europa.eu