Dr Michael Byrne

Continental climate change: simple models to understand the future

Dr Michael Byrne is collaborating with Prof Gabriele Hegerl (University of Edinburgh), Prof Jack Scheff (University of North Carolina at Charlotte) and supported by Marie MacRae (University of St Andrews).

Climate change is the critical challenge facing modern societies. The impacts of global warming will predominantly be experienced on continents, through increased risks of droughts, wildfires and flooding. The 2018 summer heatwave, during which Scotland experienced its hottest day on record, is an ominous portent of the future. However, our scientific understanding of continental climate change remains surprisingly limited with numerous fundamental questions still unsolved.

The Carnegie Research Workshop to be held at the University of St Andrews in June 2020 will define the agenda for the next decade of continental climate change research. Bringing together leading experts from Scotland and around the world who focus on the physical mechanisms controlling continental climate, we will:

  • Showcase the state-of-the-art theoretical, modelling and observational work currently being carried out to understand the future of continental climates.
  • Define the key questions for the next decade of research.
  • Assemble new, interdisciplinary collaborations to tackle the major challenges of continental climate change.

The most important outcome from the Workshop will be a new network of leading Scottish and international researchers working together on the key questions in continental climate change. Continental climate scientists come from a variety of disciplines including climate science, hydrology, meteorology, ecology, geography, geology and physics. The Workshop presents a unique opportunity to assemble the leading researchers from across these disciplines so as to boost interactions between the individuals and institutions at the forefront of the field. The enhanced interactions among experts that the Workshop stimulates will promote new collaborations and help identify promising avenues for the next decade of continental climate research.

Awarded: Carnegie Research Workshops Grants

Field: Earth & Environmental Sciences

University: University of St Andrews

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