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An International Symposium held at the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology (CEH), Wallingford, UK 14 Jul 2009.
Changes in climate will have wide ranging consequences for human and natural systems. However, arguably their most important effect will be by modifying the Earth’s water and energy cycles that influence regional water availability and through this, agricultural and industrial activity, infrastructural needs, and ecosystem services. For this reason, providing benchmarks that can be used to assess the capability of General Circulation Models (GCMs) to simulate hydrometeorological variables is a priority. Recognizing this need, scientists from the UK Joint Centre for Hydro-Meteorological Research convened a two-day International Symposium on Global Land-surface Evaporation and Climate under the aegis of the Global Energy and Water-cycle Experiment (GEWEX). The 30 participants included invited experts from the international community. The primary purpose of the symposium (which was supported by the EU WATCH project and NOAA) was to initiate activity among international scientists to first specify and then provide appropriate hydrometeorological benchmark datasets.
Discussion was organized around hydrometeorological benchmarks that could feasibly be produced within 12-18 months to aid the next IPCC review, and those that with further scientific study could be produced in 48-60 months to aid a subsequent IPCC review. Because evaporation provides the primary energy input from land surfaces to the atmosphere and is also the most significant water loss from hydrological catchments, correctly modelling global land-surface evaporation is critical for providing improved climate and weather predictions and for interpreting these in terms of water
resources. For this reason, in symposium discussions providing a global land-surface evaporation benchmark was given priority. Read the summary and recommendations pdf-document.
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