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Climate, Volume 3, Issue 4 (December 2015) – 15 articles , Pages 775-1096

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Article
Handling Interdependencies in Climate Change Risk Assessment
Climate 2015, 3(4), 1079-1096; https://doi.org/10.3390/cli3041079 - 16 Dec 2015
Cited by 24 | Viewed by 4528
Abstract
Typically, a climate change risk assessment focuses on individual sectors or hazards. However, interdependencies between climate risks manifest themselves via functional, physical, geographical, economic, policy and social mechanisms. These can occur over a range of spatial or temporal scales and with different strengths [...] Read more.
Typically, a climate change risk assessment focuses on individual sectors or hazards. However, interdependencies between climate risks manifest themselves via functional, physical, geographical, economic, policy and social mechanisms. These can occur over a range of spatial or temporal scales and with different strengths of coupling. Three case studies are used to demonstrate how interdependencies can significantly alter the nature and magnitude of risk, and, consequently, investment priorities for adaptation. The three examples explore interdependencies that arise from (1) climate loading dependence; (2) mediation of two climate impacts by physical processes operating over large spatial extents; and, (3) multiple risks that are influenced by shared climatic and socio-economic drivers. Drawing upon learning from these case studies, and other work, a framework for the analysis and consideration of interdependencies in climate change risk assessment has been developed. This is an iterative learning loop that involves defining the system, scoping interaction mechanisms, applying appropriate modelling tools, identifying vulnerabilities and opportunities, and assessing the performance of adaptation interventions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Risk Assessment and Management)
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Article
Using a New Approach to Design Innovative Tools for Monitoring and Evaluating Water Policy of Burkina Faso in Response to Climate Risks
Climate 2015, 3(4), 1057-1078; https://doi.org/10.3390/cli3041057 - 16 Dec 2015
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2861
Abstract
Climate change impacts on water resources have jeopardized human security in the Sahel countries for many decades, especially in achieving food security. Many strategies and policies have been made to address such impacts. However, there are still difficulties to measure progress and the [...] Read more.
Climate change impacts on water resources have jeopardized human security in the Sahel countries for many decades, especially in achieving food security. Many strategies and policies have been made to address such impacts. However, there are still difficulties to measure progress and the effectiveness of these policies and strategies with regard to climate risks. The lack of practical and consensual monitoring tool is one of the factors that can explain gaps in policies and initiatives to overcome these impacts. To move towards filling this gap, using ClimProspect model and a participatory approach, and based on in-depth vulnerability analysis, this paper makes available some innovative integrated and coherent resilience indicators and a new index for Burkina Faso’s water resources. Taking into account both climate and disaster risks, the indicators and index developed are related to warning, responses, recovery and long term resilience. The indicators-based index applied to three sites shows that agriculture water is less resilient to a changing climate with a score varying from 22.66% to 24%. These tools can help in formulating, implementation and reviewing water policy to secure water resources under the stress of climate change. The approach and findings bring together, on one hand, social and ecological resilience to climate risks, and sciences and policy on the other. Full article
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Article
Processes Prior and during the Early 18th Century Irish Famines—Weather Extremes and Migration
Climate 2015, 3(4), 1035-1056; https://doi.org/10.3390/cli3041035 - 10 Dec 2015
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 3182
Abstract
This paper advances the current debates on famine and famine history, with a focus on the first half of the 18th century in Ireland. Ireland was often hit by severe famines and two of them, specifically the famines of 1728–1729 and 1740–1741, are [...] Read more.
This paper advances the current debates on famine and famine history, with a focus on the first half of the 18th century in Ireland. Ireland was often hit by severe famines and two of them, specifically the famines of 1728–1729 and 1740–1741, are at the center of this article. The analysis of those famines will show the relevance of weather extremes as one driver in the functional chain of famines. Analyzing the linkage between weather extremes and social, political and economic vulnerabilities of the society further enhances the debate on past famines. Additionally, this paper focuses on the migration flows in the context of both Irish famines. These migration flows lay the foundation for the migration patterns during the “Great Irish Famine” of 1845–1852. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Impacts on Health)
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Article
Combining Climate Scenarios and Risk Management Approach—A Finnish Case Study
Climate 2015, 3(4), 1018-1034; https://doi.org/10.3390/cli3041018 - 20 Nov 2015
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2993
Abstract
Climate change impacts on nature and the environment have been widely discussed and studied. Traditionally, a company’s continuity management is based on risk analysis. There are also attempts to implement scenario-based methods in the risk management procedures of companies. For industrial decision makers, [...] Read more.
Climate change impacts on nature and the environment have been widely discussed and studied. Traditionally, a company’s continuity management is based on risk analysis. There are also attempts to implement scenario-based methods in the risk management procedures of companies. For industrial decision makers, it is vital to acknowledge the impacts of climate change with regards to their adaptation strategies. However, a scenario-based approach is not always the most effective way to analyze these risks. This paper investigates the integration of scenario and risk-based methods for a company’s adaptation planning. It considers the uncertainties of the climate change scenarios and the recognized risks as well as suitable adaptation strategies. The paper presents the results of climate risk analysis prepared for two Finnish hydropower plants. The introduced method was first piloted in 2008 and then again in 2015. The update of the analysis pointed out that at the company level, the climate risks and other risks originating from governmental or political decisions form an intertwined wholeness where the origin of the risk is difficult to outline. It seems that, from the business point of view, the main adaptation strategies suggested by the integrated risk and scenarios approach are those that support buying “safety margins” in new investments and reducing decision time horizons. Both of these adaptation strategies provide an advantage in the circumstances where also political decisions and societal changes have a great effect on decision making. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Risk Assessment and Management)
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Article
Utilizing Humidity and Temperature Data to Advance Monitoring and Prediction of Meteorological Drought
Climate 2015, 3(4), 999-1017; https://doi.org/10.3390/cli3040999 - 18 Nov 2015
Cited by 14 | Viewed by 3140
Abstract
The fraction of land area over the Continental United States experiencing extreme hot and dry conditions has been increasing over the past several decades, consistent with expectation from anthropogenic climate change. A clear concurrent change in precipitation, however, has not been confirmed. Vapor [...] Read more.
The fraction of land area over the Continental United States experiencing extreme hot and dry conditions has been increasing over the past several decades, consistent with expectation from anthropogenic climate change. A clear concurrent change in precipitation, however, has not been confirmed. Vapor pressure deficit (VPD), combining temperature and humidity, is utilized here as an indicator of the background atmospheric conditions associated with meteorological drought. Furthermore, atmospheric conditions associated with warm season drought events are assessed by partitioning associated VPD anomalies into the temperature and humidity components. This approach suggests that the concurrence of anomalously high temperature and low humidity was an important driver of the rapid development and evolution of the exceptionally severe 2011 Texas and the 2012 Great Plains droughts. By classification of a decade of extreme drought events and tracking them back in time, it was found that near surface atmospheric temperature and humidity add essential information to the commonly used precipitation-based drought indicators and can advance efforts to determine the timing of drought onset and its severity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Extremes: Observations and Impacts)
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Article
Knowledge, Information, and Views of Climate Change: An Examination of Coastal Stakeholders along the Gulf of Mexico
Climate 2015, 3(4), 983-998; https://doi.org/10.3390/cli3040983 - 18 Nov 2015
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 3446
Abstract
The ability to understand complex issues is essential to adequately evaluate risk and policy alternatives. Stakeholders are more likely to understand and influence these issues. While stakeholders that specialize in coastal regions have many issues that demand their attention, there are a few [...] Read more.
The ability to understand complex issues is essential to adequately evaluate risk and policy alternatives. Stakeholders are more likely to understand and influence these issues. While stakeholders that specialize in coastal regions have many issues that demand their attention, there are a few that potentially affect everyone within this community. We utilize in-depth interviews to examine climate change attitudes, and the influence of knowledge, information, and institutions within a sample of stakeholders along the Gulf Coast in Florida, Texas, and Louisiana. Our analysis is the first to reveal that institutional forces may influence climate change attitudes for members of that institution. Furthermore, we learn that different sources of information directly influence these attitudes. Full article
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Article
Evaluation of Precipitation Climatology Derived from TRMM Multi-Satellite Precipitation Analysis (TMPA) Monthly Product over Land with Two Gauge-Based Products
Climate 2015, 3(4), 964-982; https://doi.org/10.3390/cli3040964 - 18 Nov 2015
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 2231
Abstract
The NASA/JAXA Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) has been in operation for over 17 years since 1997. The length of TRMM is far shorter than those from ground observations, raising a question as to whether TRMM derived climatology products are good enough for [...] Read more.
The NASA/JAXA Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) has been in operation for over 17 years since 1997. The length of TRMM is far shorter than those from ground observations, raising a question as to whether TRMM derived climatology products are good enough for research and applications. In this study, three climatologies derived from a blended product (the TRMM Multi-Satellite Precipitation Analysis (TMPA) monthly product or 3B43) and gauge-based ground observations (Global Precipitation Climatology Center (GPCC) and Willmott and Matsuura (WM)) are compared over land on a global scale (50° N–50° S) to assess the performance and weaknesses of the TMPA-derived climatology. Results show that the 3B43 climatology matches well with the two gauge-based climatologies in all seasons in terms of spatial distribution, zonal means as well as seasonal variations. However, large variations are found in light rain (<0.5 mm/day) regions such as the Sahara Desert. At high rain rates, large negative biases (3B43 < WM < GPCC) are found in orographically influenced regions such as windward sides of monsoon mountains in JJA, which is associated with underestimation of shallow orographic rain rates in microwave radiometer algorithms and sparse gauge data for bias correction. Nonetheless, biases in 3B43 exist and vary with geographic locations due to a number of factors such as gauge availability and algorithm issues. Full article
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Article
Comparative Risk Assessment to Inform Adaptation Priorities for the Natural Environment: Observations from the First UK Climate Change Risk Assessment
Climate 2015, 3(4), 937-963; https://doi.org/10.3390/cli3040937 - 17 Nov 2015
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 2809
Abstract
Risk assessment can potentially provide an objective framework to synthesise and prioritise climate change risks to inform adaptation policy. However, there are significant challenges in the application of comparative risk assessment procedures to climate change, particularly for the natural environment. These challenges are [...] Read more.
Risk assessment can potentially provide an objective framework to synthesise and prioritise climate change risks to inform adaptation policy. However, there are significant challenges in the application of comparative risk assessment procedures to climate change, particularly for the natural environment. These challenges are evaluated with particular reference to the first statutory Climate Change Risk Assessment (CCRA) and evidence review procedures used to guide policy for the UK government. More progress was achieved on risk identification, screening and prioritisation compared to risk quantification. This was due to the inherent complexity and interdependence of ecological risks and their interaction with socio-economic drivers as well as a climate change. Robust strategies to manage risk were identified as those that coordinate organisational resources to enhance ecosystem resilience, and to accommodate inevitable change, rather than to meet specific species or habitats targets. The assessment also highlighted subjective and contextual components of risk appraisal including ethical issues regarding the level of human intervention in the natural environment and the proposed outcomes of any intervention. This suggests that goals for risk assessment need to be more clearly explicated and assumptions on tolerable risk declared as a primer for further dialogue on expectations for managed outcomes. Ecosystem-based adaptation may mean that traditional habitats and species conservation goals and existing regulatory frameworks no longer provide the best guide for long-term risk management thereby challenging the viability of some existing practices. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Risk Assessment and Management)
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Review
The Health Effects of Climate Change in the WHO European Region
Climate 2015, 3(4), 901-936; https://doi.org/10.3390/cli3040901 - 16 Nov 2015
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 5474
Abstract
The evidence of observed health effects as well as projections of future health risks from climate variability and climate change is growing. This article summarizes new knowledge on these health risks generated since the IPCC fourth assessment report (AR4) was published in 2007, [...] Read more.
The evidence of observed health effects as well as projections of future health risks from climate variability and climate change is growing. This article summarizes new knowledge on these health risks generated since the IPCC fourth assessment report (AR4) was published in 2007, with a specific focus on the 53 countries comprising the WHO European Region. Many studies on the effects of weather, climate variability, and climate change on health in the European Region have been published since 2007, increasing the level of certainty with regard to already known health threats. Exposures to temperature extremes, floods, storms, and wildfires have effects on cardiovascular and respiratory health. Climate- and weather-related health risks from worsening food and water safety and security, poor air quality, and ultraviolet radiation exposure as well as increasing allergic diseases, vector- and rodent-borne diseases, and other climate-sensitive health outcomes also warrant attention and policy action to protect human health. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Impacts on Health)
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Article
A Survey of the Relationship between Climatic Heat Stress Indices and Fundamental Milk Components Considering Uncertainty
Climate 2015, 3(4), 876-900; https://doi.org/10.3390/cli3040876 - 13 Nov 2015
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2783
Abstract
The main purpose of this study is to assess the relationship between four bioclimatic indices for cattle (environmental stress, heat load, modified heat load, and respiratory rate predictor indices) and three main milk components (fat, protein, and milk yield) considering uncertainty. The climate [...] Read more.
The main purpose of this study is to assess the relationship between four bioclimatic indices for cattle (environmental stress, heat load, modified heat load, and respiratory rate predictor indices) and three main milk components (fat, protein, and milk yield) considering uncertainty. The climate parameters used to calculate the climate indices were taken from the NASA-Modern Era Retrospective-Analysis for Research and Applications (NASA-MERRA) reanalysis from 2002 to 2010. Cow milk data were considered for the same period from April to September when the cows use the natural pasture. The study is based on a linear regression analysis using correlations as a summarizing diagnostic. Bootstrapping is used to represent uncertainty information in the confidence intervals. The main results identify an interesting relationship between the milk compounds and climate indices under all climate conditions. During spring, there are reasonably high correlations between the fat and protein concentrations vs. the climate indices, whereas there are insignificant dependencies between the milk yield and climate indices. During summer, the correlation between the fat and protein concentrations with the climate indices decreased in comparison with the spring results, whereas the correlation for the milk yield increased. This methodology is suggested for studies investigating the impacts of climate variability/change on food and agriculture using short term data considering uncertainty. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Change on Crops, Foods and Diets)
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Article
Statistical Selection of the Optimum Models in the CMIP5 Dataset for Climate Change Projections of Indian Monsoon Rainfall
Climate 2015, 3(4), 858-875; https://doi.org/10.3390/cli3040858 - 03 Nov 2015
Cited by 20 | Viewed by 3407
Abstract
Monsoons are the life and soul of India’s financial aspects, especially that of agribusiness in deciding cropping patterns. Around 80% of the yearly precipitation occurs from June to September amid monsoon season across India. Thus, its seasonal mean precipitation is crucial for agriculture [...] Read more.
Monsoons are the life and soul of India’s financial aspects, especially that of agribusiness in deciding cropping patterns. Around 80% of the yearly precipitation occurs from June to September amid monsoon season across India. Thus, its seasonal mean precipitation is crucial for agriculture and the national water supply. From the start of the 19th century, several studies have been conducted on the possible increments in Indian summer monsoon precipitation in the future. Unfortunately, none of them has endeavoured to discover the models whose yield give the best fit to the observed data. Here some statistical tests are performed to quantify the models of Coupled Model Inter-comparison Project 5 (CMIP5). Then, after, the Technique for Order Preference by Similarity to Ideal Solution (TOPSIS) method is used to select optimum models. It shows that four models, CCSM4, CESM1-CAM5, GFDL-CM3, and GFDL-ESM2G, best capture the pattern in Indian summer monsoon rainfall over the historical period (1871–2005). Further, Student’s t-test is utilized to estimate the significant changes in meteorological subdivisions of selected optimum models. Also, our results reveal the Indian meteorological subdivisions which are liable to encounter significant changes in mean at confidence levels that differ from 80% to 99%. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Change and Development in South Asia)
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Review
Decadal Patterns of Westerly Winds, Temperatures, Ocean Gyre Circulations and Fish Abundance: A Review
Climate 2015, 3(4), 833-857; https://doi.org/10.3390/cli3040833 - 20 Oct 2015
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 3568
Abstract
The purpose of this review is to describe the global scope of the multidecadal climate oscillations that go back at least, through several hundred years. Literature, historic data, satellite data and global circulation model output have been used to provide evidence for the [...] Read more.
The purpose of this review is to describe the global scope of the multidecadal climate oscillations that go back at least, through several hundred years. Literature, historic data, satellite data and global circulation model output have been used to provide evidence for the zonal and meridional jet stream patterns. These patterns were predominantly zonal from the 1970s to 1990s and switched since the 1990s to a meridional wind phase, with weakening jet streams forming Rossby waves in the northern and southern hemispheres. A weakened northern jet stream has allowed northerly winds to flow down over the continents in the northern hemisphere during the winter period, causing some harsh winters and slowing anthropogenic climate warming regionally. Wind oscillations impact ocean gyre circulation affecting upwelling strength and pelagic fish abundance with synchronous behavior in sub Arctic gyres during phases of the oscillation and asynchronous behavior in subtropical gyres between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. Full article
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Article
Perceptions of Obvious and Disruptive Climate Change: Community-Based Risk Assessment for Two Native Villages in Alaska
Climate 2015, 3(4), 812-832; https://doi.org/10.3390/cli3040812 - 16 Oct 2015
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 3135
Abstract
This work operationalizes the determinants of climate change risk, exposure and vulnerability, through the perceptions held by Native hunters, fishers, and gatherers in Savoonga and Shaktoolik, Alaska. Informed by their skill, experience, and the traditional knowledge of their elders, hunters, fishers, and gatherers [...] Read more.
This work operationalizes the determinants of climate change risk, exposure and vulnerability, through the perceptions held by Native hunters, fishers, and gatherers in Savoonga and Shaktoolik, Alaska. Informed by their skill, experience, and the traditional knowledge of their elders, hunters, fishers, and gatherers in these communities are astute observers of their environment and environmental change. A questionnaire is used to sort and rank their perceptions of the most obvious and disruptive elements of climate change as representations of exposure and vulnerability, respectively. Results represent the relative strength and significance of those perceptions of environmental change. In addition to other changes, storms are among the most obvious and disruptive impacts of climate change to respondents in both communities, while changes to sea ice tend to be more disruptive in Savoonga, a more ice-obligate culture, than Shaktoolik. Changes on the tundra are more obvious in Shaktoolik, but is the least disruptive category of change in both villages. Changes along the coast were both obvious and disruptive, albeit more so in Shaktoolik than Savoonga. The findings suggest that traditional ecological knowledge is a valuable source of information to access perceptions of risk, and develop climate risk management and adaptation plans. The questionnaire design and statistical methodology may be of interest to those working on community-based adaptation and risk assessment projects in high-risk, poor, and marginalized Native communities with small populations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Risk Assessment and Management)
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Article
Drought Monitoring for Rice Production in Cambodia
Climate 2015, 3(4), 792-811; https://doi.org/10.3390/cli3040792 - 16 Oct 2015
Cited by 19 | Viewed by 4528
Abstract
Rice production underpins the national economy and the most rural livelihoods in Cambodia, but it is negatively impacted by repeated droughts. The research reported on in this paper focuses on relationships between drought occurrences in Cambodia’s most drought-prone province (Kampong Speu) and (i) [...] Read more.
Rice production underpins the national economy and the most rural livelihoods in Cambodia, but it is negatively impacted by repeated droughts. The research reported on in this paper focuses on relationships between drought occurrences in Cambodia’s most drought-prone province (Kampong Speu) and (i) damage to the annual rice harvest between 1994 and 2011, and (ii) the Niño 3.4 index. Droughts were identified using the Standardised Precipitation Index (SPI). In seven of the years between 1994 and 2006 droughts damaged >1000 ha of rice in the Kampong Speu province. Furthermore, in 11 years >200 ha of rice were damaged. A critical success index of 0.66 obtained for an analysis of SPI-defined drought and area rice damage in the province indicates a strong statistical relationship. A statistically significant correlation (r = −0.455) was achieved between Niño 3.4 and 12-month SPI values lagged by three months, this indicates the importance of ENSO linkages in explaining drought in this region. Late season droughts lead to greater rice damage than early- and mid-season droughts. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Change on Crops, Foods and Diets)
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Article
Urban Extreme Weather: A Challenge for a Healthy Living Environment in Akure, Ondo State, Nigeria
Climate 2015, 3(4), 775-791; https://doi.org/10.3390/cli3040775 - 30 Sep 2015
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 4616
Abstract
The increasing rate of heat in the climate in urban areas has become one of the striking problems in many developing countries. This study examined the relationships between the monthly temperature, rainfall and incidence of heat-rash between 2003 and 2012 in order to [...] Read more.
The increasing rate of heat in the climate in urban areas has become one of the striking problems in many developing countries. This study examined the relationships between the monthly temperature, rainfall and incidence of heat-rash between 2003 and 2012 in order to determine the impact of climate on occurrence of heat-rash in Akure, Ondo state, Nigeria. Data were obtained from Ondo State Specialist Hospital and Ondo State Meteorological Center. A line graph analysis was employed to identify the trend of the temperature, rainfall and incidence of this weather-based disease. Correlation analysis determined the relationship existing between the monthly temperature and the heat-rash. Tables and graphs were generally used for data presentation. The result shows that; the monthly temperature is low between the month of May and October when the minimum and maximum temperature is at 20.6 °C and 34.1 °C respectively; high temperature was recorded during the month of January, February, March and slightly different in April, November and December ranging from 24.6 °C to 35.1 °C.; the monthly temperature descends sharply during the month of March and remains low in April, May, June and July that characterized with high peak of rainfall; heat-rash has significant increase in 2003 (September), 2004 (September), 2007 (December), 2011 (November) and 2012 (October). The study recommends that people in this area and other related environments should engage in sensitizing the public on awareness of temperature—rash relationship and put up a measure of avoiding the heat effect during the periods of high temperature. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Impacts on Health)
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