The standardised climate science tool aims to translate complex data into actionable information for climate adaptation and mitigation decision-makers.
Met Éireann, Ireland’s national meteorological service, has released the first predictions from its Translate project.
Initial findings confirm that Ireland’s climate will become increasingly warmer in the coming decades. The country is likely to experience fewer cold winter nights and up to a 10-fold increase in warm (temperatures above 15 degrees Celsius) summer nights.
By the end of the century, it is predicted that heatwaves will become more common. Summers are projected to be drier while winters will be wetter, with overall rainfall increasing annually.
The Translate project brings together all previous climate predictions of relevance to Ireland to develop a standardised national resource. The aim is to help “Irish society speak the same climate language” by translating complex climate science into user-friendly data tools including indices, risk assessments and uncertainty estimates to ensure that decision-makers have the latest, most accurate scientific evidence at their disposal.
According to Met Éireann’s head of climate services, Keith Lambkin, “one common standardised set of national climate projections ensures we are all singing from the same climate hymn sheet”.
“Translate outputs are being used to help improve climate resilience, for example in our built environment, ensuring future buildings and critical infrastructure can handle more extreme heat conditions and that road drainage can manage changes in rainfall patterns,” Lambkin explained.
The initial findings were announced at the European Climate Change Adaptation Conference today (19 June). The conference is being held in Dublin this year and runs until 21 June.
At the conference today, the World Meteorological Organization launched the State of the Climate in Europe 2022 report. The WMO has stressed the importance of climate services for educating decision-makers and supporting the achievement of climate targets. Lambkin described Translate as “a critical step forward in the provision of robust climate services in Ireland”.
Launched in 2021, the Translate project is a collaborative effort led by climate researchers from the Irish Centre for High-End Computing (ICHEC) at the University of Galway and the Science Foundation Ireland Research Centre for Energy, Climate and Marine (MaREI) at University College Cork and is supported by Met Éireann climatologists.
A second phase of the Translate project will include more variables, such as wind, humidity and radiation. According to the project lead, Dr Paul Nolan, these developments will “support a wide range of sectors in taking well-informed climate adaptation, mitigation and planning decisions”.
In May, the WMO warned of a 98pc chance that at least one of the next five years would be the warmest on record.
Meanwhile, greenhouse gas emissions have reached an “all-time high” and Ireland is set to significantly miss its 2030 climate targets, according to the latest report from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
The full set of results from the Translate project will be made available later this year as part of a report and will be viewable on the EPA’s Climate Ireland site.
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