Climate Change Indices
There is a general consensus within the climate community that any change in the frequency or severity of extreme climate events would have profound impacts on nature and society. It is thus very important to analyze extreme events. The monitoring, detection and attribution of changes in climate extremes usually require daily resolution data. However, the compilation, provision, and update of a globally complete and readily available full resolution daily dataset is a very difficult task. This comes about, in part, because not all National Meteorological and Hydrometeorological Services (NMHS) have the capacity or mandate to freely distribute the daily data that they collect. Consequently, the ET and its predecessor, the CCl/CLIVAR Working Group (WG) on Climate Change Detection have been coordinating an international effort to develop, calculate, and analysis a suite of indices so that individuals, countries, and regions can calculate the indices in exactly the same way such that their analyses will fit seamlessly into the global picture (Karl et al. 1999, Peterson and Co-authors 2001). It is hoped that participation in this effort will allow all interested parties, including the index contributors, to benefit from improved monitoring of change with broader spatial coverage that is currently unavailable.
- Karl, T.R., N. Nicholls, and A. Ghazi, 1999: CLIVAR/GCOS/WMO workshop on indices and indicators for climate extremes: Workshop summary. Climatic Change, 42, 3-7.
- Peterson, T.C., and Coauthors: Report on the Activities of the Working Group on Climate Change Detection and Related Rapporteurs 1998-2001. WMO, Rep. WCDMP-47, WMO-TD 1071, Geneve, Switzerland, 143pp.
- Peterson, T.C., 2005: Climate Change Indices. WMO Bulletin, 54 (2), 83-86.