Managers and policy makers in the Caribbean require knowledge of the likely impacts and hazards arising from climate change that are specific to their geographical location and that are relevant to their planning time-horizons (e.g. the short term, 2030s, or the longer term, 2080s). However, current climate model projections of the weather are of limited use in this respect due to scale and bias issues. Sophisticated downscaling providing locally relevant unbiased climate change information remains sporadic. Clear guidance for managers and policy makers for the utilization of such information is also limited.
The CARIWIG project will addresses these issues through the provision of locally relevant information on the weather impacts of climate change for a range of time horizons, training for stakeholder technical staff in the use of such weather information, the development of support networks within the region and development of partnerships with UK research institutes specializing in the management of a range of hazards and impacts.
A web service will be developed to provide this service through the adaptation and provision of leading weather-generator models from the EARWIG and the UKCIP09 climate knowledge systems. These weather generator models will be used to provide locally relevant weather projections based on the best available observed data and climate model outputs for the region.
Preliminary use of the new web service will be for impacts studies and training programs with key stakeholders in the region. This will inform management decisions and inform the development of policy to address specific local hazards and impacts of climate change. In addition exchange visits to specialist institutions will help build regional capacity in climate compatible development, and help develop and strengthen research and regional support networks. Research findings, best practice and the web service will be further disseminated through workshops with key stakeholders and the provision of technical training for stakeholder staff.
The project is funded by the Climate and Development Knowledge Network (CDKN) and work will be carried out in partnership with the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (Belize), University of East Anglia (UK), University of the West Indies (Jamaica) and the Institute of Meteorology (Cuba).