This unique collaboration will combine the brainpower of top British scientists from the NCAS Centre for Global Atmospheric Modelling (CGAM) and the MET Office’s Hadley Centre with Japanese climate experts and cutting edge super-computing technology.

The UK has invested £1.4 million in the initiative, which will run over the next five years and is hoped to significantly advance the science of predicting climate change.

Using the Japanese Earth Simulator supercomputer, one of the world’s most powerful machines, the scientists will run the UK’s state of the art climate models with the most complex science incorporated to date and at the highest resolution ever.

The physical effects of the atmosphere, ocean and land on the Earth’s climate will be considered, as well as the interactions of plants and marine life with the climate.

Climate change scenarios should be able to be produced from the results for coming decades, with unprecedented detail and improved estimate of key societal and economical vulnerabilities.

These advances will also allow UK and Japanese scientists to investigate the direct impacts of climate change on the environment, such as the production of foodstuff and timber, water, energy resources and air quality.

Director of CGAM, Professor Julia Slingo said she hoped the partnership would significantly progress our understanding of how weather and climate systems work across the globe.

“International collaboration on this scale has never been more timely,” she stated. “We hope to be able to assess with more confidence the likely change in hazardous weather events, enabling governments and policy maker to plan ahead and set in place contingency measures. This should ultimately help to save money and lives.”

By Jane Kettle

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