WCRP Director and In-coming CliC-Chair Visit the Norwegian Polar Institute

The CliC International Project Office was happy to host the visit of WCRP Director Ghassem Asrar and in-coming CliC Chair Gregory M. Flato at the The Norwegian Polar institute on Monday 12.November 2012.

Dr. Asrar and Dr. Flato met with many researchers at NPI. Initial discussions were also held with NPI leadership on a formal agreement regarding the hosting of the CliC office. Dr. Flato gave a stimulating talk on “Predictions and Projections of Arctic Climate Change”


From 13:30-14:30 at the Norwegian Polar institute in the Fram Center, Hjalmar Johansens gate 14, 5th floor, room ‘Tre Kroner’ Tromsø, Norway. Find Fram Center on the map.


The Arctic will experience climate change sooner and more intensely than the rest of the world. This is in part a consequence of feedbacks in the climate system that amplify its response to external forcing such as increasing greenhouse gases. These feedbacks, however, also amplify model errors and hence uncertainty in future climate.

This talk will provide an overview of some recent results in two complementary areas: seasonal to inter-annual climate prediction, with a particular focus on predicting sea-ice extent; and longer-term climate projections, in this case with a focus on projected trends in sea-ice extent over the coming century.

It will be shown that, even on time scales of one year, the externally-forced climate signal is an important part of the predictive skill that can be realized by a coupled prediction system.

At longer time scales, the differences between the CMIP3 and CMIP5 multi-model ensembles will be examined with a particular emphasis on the projected response of sea-ice coverage to increasing greenhouse gases. Here it will be shown that the CMIP5 models tend to respond somewhat more strongly to GHG forcing than their CMIP3 predecessors, and this likely explains the relative improvement in simulating the historical decline in Arctic sea-ice extent.