Global climate models are at the base of climate change science. They enable the community to provide to decision-makers and a large range of users much demanded information on climate and future, especially man-made, climate change. Within Europe, the European Network for Earth System Modelling gathers together the European climate/Earth System Modelling community, which is working on the understanding and the prediction of future climate change. This community is strongly involved in the assessments of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and provides those predictions, on which EU mitigation and adaptation policies are elaborated.
Climate change raises several challenges for the ENES scientific community:
- To improve our understanding and prediction of future climate changes requires the analysis of the full complexity of the Earth System, i.e. the physical, biological and chemical dimensions coupled together, and the development of comprehensive Earth System Models capable of simulating natural climate variability and human induced climate changes;
- To improve our understanding and prediction of climate change impacts in all socio-economic dimensions requires better accounts of climate change on regional scales and enhanced interactions with the climate change impact community. This will be particularly required to prepare for adaptation to climate change.
In order to improve European competitiveness and expertise, there is also a need to:
- Better integrate countries that are new to the subject and that want to be involved in the study of climate change. Indeed, with the increasing threat of climate change, more countries want to develop their own expertise on climate change prediction to prepare for adaptation;
- Perform the most up-to-date and accurate climate simulations. This requires sophisticated models, world-class, high-performance computers, and state-of-the-art software infrastructures to make efficient use of the models and the hardware.
In terms of objectives, the European Network for Earth System Modelling is intended:
- to help in the development and evaluation of state-of-the-art climate and Earth system models,
- to facilitate focused model intercomparisons in order to assess and improve these models,
- to encourage exchanges of software and model results, and
- to help in the development of high performance computing facilities dedicated to long high-resolution multi-model ensemble integrations.