research project

Future extreme weather in Aotearoa

Extreme weather is the sharp end of climate change. Aotearoa New Zealand is highly vulnerable to the impacts of extreme weather like heavy rainfall and flooding. Homeowners, the government and insurers are just some of those eager to know what the future holds in store. With this public participation project ‘[email protected]’, you can help them... Read more »...

research project

[email protected]

Modelling climate events on home PCs One of the most innovative ways of understanding weather extremes involves running models of the same year many thousands of times. This requires vast amounts of computing power – more than is feasible even on the best supercomputers currently available to scientists. The problem can be overcome through distributed... Read more »...

research project

Marine heatwaves and the link with climate extremes

Ocean heat content changes around New Zealand: a link to climate extremes In recent summers, New Zealanders have experienced a series of marine heat waves. Temperatures in some regions have exceeded 6°C above average. While some of us enjoy the warmer water temperatures for water sports and holiday activities, most marine organisms experience heat stress,... Read more »...

research project

Warming in the Tasman Sea

The Tasman Box: filling and warming up The temperature of the Tasman Sea has a strong influence on New Zealand’s climate system. The increasing heat content of the Tasman since the 1990s has resulted in significant sea-level rise, due to thermal expansion of seawater. Marine heat waves are becoming increasingly frequent, and they too have... Read more »...

research project

Simulating New Zealand’s changing climate

Establishing a New Zealand earth system modelling capability A project which sits at the heart of the Deep South Challenge is the construction of the NZ Earth System Model (NZESM). The NZESM is a kind of crystal ball – a mathematical model of the earth’s natural systems so intricate it can predict the effects of... Read more »...

research project

Very high-resolution downscaling of the NZESM

Simulating New Zealand’s climate at fine spatial scales Heavy rainfall and extreme winds affect communities and economic activities in New Zealand. Potential changes in these and other weather processes may be better understood by simulating them at very high spatial resolution. The aim of this project is to develop a climate model for New Zealand... Read more »...

research project

Climate simulations using the NZESM, the NZ RCM and the NZ Water Model

In a rapidly changing climate, this major project for New Zealand helps us take our future into our own hands. Our rounded approach to modelling – from the global to the local and specific – helps us understand how New Zealand’s climate has changed over the recent past and how it will change this century.... Read more »...

research project

Near-term climate predictions for New Zealand

Improving predictions and understanding deep south drivers of New Zealand’s climate Climate change is already here. Living in a changing climate means playing catch-up: trying to work out what has changed, what is changing and what changes are just around the corner. Although the dramatic transformations expected later this century get the most attention, the... Read more »...

research project

Clouds & aerosols over the Southern Ocean

Reducing biases in the representation of clouds and aerosols in the NZESM Clouds have a massive effect on climate. Cloud cover reflects radiation from the sun that would otherwise be absorbed by oceans, raising their temperatures. Cloud cover can also act as a blanket, keeping warmth near the surface. Despite their significant influence on climate,... Read more »...

research project

Sulfate aerosols over the Southern Ocean

Improving the representation of sulfate aerosols over the Southern Ocean in the NZESM Have you ever looked at the ocean and noticed that the sky above it appeared hazy? This is caused by the presence of tiny particles or droplets in the air. In remote, unpolluted regions such as the Southern Ocean, such “aerosols” form... Read more »...