Survey of Climate Change Scenario Studies

31-05-1996 | Publication

A programming study is performed to determine the availability of climate change scenarios for impact studies. It is based on a study of literature and on consultations of scientists involved in the development and the use of climate change scenarios.

On the basis of the data requirements of the impact modellers, three types of impact studies are distinguished: single-site studies, multi-site studies and regional studies. The various techniques to construct climate change scenarios are discussed in terms of scientific and pragmatic analyses of strengths and weaknesses of the methodologies. Five suitable approaches for the construction of climate change scenarios are identified. These are: GCM-based transformation, regional modelling, National Research Programme (NRP) I transformation and statistical downscaling either as a separate method or in combination with weather generators. The availability and the applicability of the five methods is explored with emphasis on impact studies concerning the Netherlands and Europe. All methods require substantial tailoring to the specifications of the various impact studies. It is noted that tailoring for single-site studies and tailoring for multi-site studies require different approaches. Finally, the state-of-the-art on scenarios as described in the IPCC 1995 assessment is outlined.