Common services

The Common Services task is to provide environmental information for European cities under present and future climate scenarios, in support to long-term urban planning. A climate scenario means the resulting climate evolution over time, as simulated by a General Circulation Model (GCM), covering the globe and forced by a certain IPCC emission scenario. The spatial resolution is typically 200-300 km.

A global climate scenario result may be downscaled to a higher spatial resolution, typically 25-50 km, by a Regional Climate Model (RCM). The regional downscaling in SUDPLAN will initially be performed by SMHI's RCM and will generate climate scenarios at 44 or 22 km resolution over Europe.

As indicated in the figure below, the production of those European scale climate scenarios is an activity outside SUDPLAN. Common Services will start at the European scale and downscale variables of interest to the urban scale.

Overview of Common Services
Overview of the SUDPLAN modelling of environmental factors, going from the European scale (left) to the urban and eventually finer scale (right). SUDPLAN involves the Common Services modelling as well as the specific modelling required by different pilot cities. Enlarge Image

Due to the uncertainties in climate modelling, SUDPLAN will provide various climate scenarios so that the planning can be based on an ensemble of different future scenarios. The climate scenarios will be selected according to IPCC directed activities preparing for the assessment reports AR4 and AR5, the latter through the CMIP5 coordinated model inter-comparison.
The results of CMIP5 will be available in the end of 2010 or beginning of 2011, so for the first SUDPLAN version the AR4 emission scenario A1B will used. The use of SMHI’s RCA model with input from two different GCMs – from ECHAM5 and HADCM3 – will illustrate the uncertainty in climate scenario modelling.

For more information about the different parts within Common Services, see links on the right hand side.