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MARI/CCPO Seminar Series Spring 2015

Generating Actionable Regional Climate Information for Decision-Making

Raghu Murtugudde, Earth System Science Interdisciplinary Center (ESSIC), University of Maryland

The IPCC class models continue to increase in their complexity and realism of Earth System representation with increasing resolutions. They will serve global governance issues as envisioned in the Representative Concentration Pathways but day-to-day decision-making for water, food, energy, coastal management, etc., will require regional-specificities that are not easily captured by global models. Adding skill to global model predictions and projections has relied largely on increased resolution and the garbage-in-garbage-out syndrome has been a severe handicap for that paradigm. A multi-physics ensembling approach is employed to develop a Regional Earth System Model with complete terrestrial hydrology and cloud-aerosol-radiation feedbacks. An example of a partial implementation of a Regional Earth System Prediction for the Chesapeake Bay region is used as framework to outline the possible pathways for adaptive learning and sustainable management from days to decades at scales that matter. Some basic predictions are discussed to emphasize the need to build confidence in the use of the actionable information generated by such systems.