CLIMATE CHARACTERIZATION

The climate is one of the main factors that condition society’s way of life. The climate, however, requires a broader and more complex study than a simple description of the meteorological-oceanographic conditions at a given time, or their short-term forecast (operational systems).

The goal of climate characterization is to provide information on the conditions of the average state of the climate system (considering the atmosphere, hydrosphere, cryosphere, lithosphere and biosphere and their iterations), as well as its anomalies based on an understanding of its natural variability on different time scales (e.g. seasonal, inter-annual, centuries). Climate characterization thus provides a basis for the development of any personalized climate service, which allows for a more competitive and resilient society.

In addition to characterizing the usual climate conditions, it is important to mention two elements – significant due to their potential impacts – within climate characterization: extreme weather phenomena and the changes in climate that global warming due to human activity can cause.

At IHCantabria, we have over a decade of experience in climate analysis and characterization. To carry out our studies, we have always combined the following three disciplines: (i) an understanding of physical processes, (ii) the most advanced mathematical-statistical techniques, and (iii) direct applications arising from the results of climate change such as engineering, risk assessment and management.

Methodology

Consulting

We study at local/regional scale the complexity of climatic conditions and their impact on society, identifying the main dominant climate variables and physical processes to consider, and climate agents that lead to hazards.

Consulting

We study at local/regional scale the complexity of climatic conditions and their impact on society, identifying the main dominant climate variables and physical processes to consider, and climate agents that lead to hazards.

Databases

We gather and, if necessary we develop databases needed to conduct a robust climate study.

Databases

We gather and, if necessary we develop databases needed to conduct a robust climate study.

SCALING OF CLIMATE STUDY

In order to carry out an adequate climate study, the work method has to be scaled spatially based on the objective of the study. Because of this, our climate studies can use approaches based on first identifying a local problem, employing both downscaling and upscaling techniques, and top-down and bottom-up approaches (the former analyzes the problem from a larger to smaller spatial scale).

SCALING OF CLIMATE STUDY

In order to carry out an adequate climate study, the work method has to be scaled spatially based on the objective of the study. Because of this, our climate studies can use approaches based on first identifying a local problem, employing both downscaling and upscaling techniques, and top-down and bottom-up approaches (the former analyzes the problem from a larger to smaller spatial scale).

Mathematical-statistical analysis

Different techniques have to be used, depending on the ultimate goal of the climate analysis. We work with a wide range of methods and tools in the fields of data mining, machine learning, multivariate analysis, specialized methods for time series, numerical modeling, extreme event analysis, classification methods, non-linear regression, etc. Importantly, given the nature of the climate system, we always evaluate and quantify the degree of uncertainty/confidence of the study conducted.

Mathematical-statistical analysis

Different techniques have to be used, depending on the ultimate goal of the climate analysis. We work with a wide range of methods and tools in the fields of data mining, machine learning, multivariate analysis, specialized methods for time series, numerical modeling, extreme event analysis, classification methods, non-linear regression, etc. Importantly, given the nature of the climate system, we always evaluate and quantify the degree of uncertainty/confidence of the study conducted.

DEVELOPMENT OF CLIMATE PRODUCTS

Our goal is to provide climate information that is useful for decision making. Therefore, we always make an additional effort to develop customized products that allow us to successfully transfer the climate characterization performed.

DEVELOPMENT OF CLIMATE PRODUCTS

Our goal is to provide climate information that is useful for decision making. Therefore, we always make an additional effort to develop customized products that allow us to successfully transfer the climate characterization performed.

AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Standard climate studies

Statistical determinations.
Joint distributions of climate variables.
Mean and extreme regimes.
Climate characterization required in national and international regulations.
Estimation of possible changes in climate conditions due to climate change.

Analysis of climate variability on different time scales

Studies related to time scales, from the short term (diurnal variation, seasonality), medium term (changes over years/decades), through the long term (historical trends, climate projections for climate change scenarios).

Application of downscaling techniques (dynamic, statistical and hybrid) to increase the spatial resolution of climate information

With specific experience in atmospheric (e.g. wind), marine (e.g. sea level, waves, currents), and hydrological (e.g. flow) variables.

Analysis of extreme weather events

Detailed studies (e.g. flooding risk, estimation of values associated with high return periods) based on the most current numerical tools and statistics to characterize extreme weather conditions, both in extra-tropical (storms, flooding) and tropical (extreme climate associated with tropical cyclones) regions, always providing probabilistic information.

SIGNIFICANT PROJECTS

EFFECTS OF CLIMATE CHANGE ON THE COASTS OF LATIN AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN – C3A

Includes a study of approximately 72,182 km of coastline that analyzed the changes identified in coastal dynamics, the influence of climate variability, various sources of information on the vulnerability of the coasts (physical and socioeconomic environment), the physical layout of the coast and foreseeable impacts and risks.
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EFFECTS OF CLIMATE CHANGE ON THE COASTS OF LATIN AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN – C3A

Includes a study of approximately 72,182 km of coastline that analyzed the changes identified in coastal dynamics, the influence of climate variability, various sources of information on the vulnerability of the coasts (physical and socioeconomic environment), the physical layout of the coast and foreseeable impacts and risks.
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CURRENT RISK OF EXTREME WINDS AND WAVES FOR INSURANCE, SILVICULTURE AND OFFSHORE ENERGY – WINDSURFER

European project that is based on developing new methods and tools to better quantify the current risk, and possible future changes, from extreme winds and waves, with a particular focus on the insurance, forestry and offshore energy sectors. The goal of the project is to provide localized climate information and evaluate the associated risk.
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CURRENT RISK OF EXTREME WINDS AND WAVES FOR INSURANCE, SILVICULTURE AND OFFSHORE ENERGY – WINDSURFER

European project that is based on developing new methods and tools to better quantify the current risk, and possible future changes, from extreme winds and waves, with a particular focus on the insurance, forestry and offshore energy sectors. The goal of the project is to provide localized climate information and evaluate the associated risk.
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CLIMATE CHANGE ON THE SPANISH COAST – C3E.

Project financed by the MAGRAMA (Ministry of Agriculture, Food and the Environment), conducted as part of the PNACC (National Plan to Adapt to Climate Change), where the potential impacts of climate change on some of the most significant components on the Spanish coast were evaluated. The results of the project provided the basis for preparing the “Strategy to adapt the coast to the effects of climate change”, in accordance with the provisions of Law 2/2013 of 29 May, on the protection and sustainable use of the coast and amending Law 22/1988, of 28 July, on Coasts.
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CLIMATE CHANGE ON THE SPANISH COAST – C3E.

Project financed by the MAGRAMA (Ministry of Agriculture, Food and the Environment), conducted as part of the PNACC (National Plan to Adapt to Climate Change), where the potential impacts of climate change on some of the most significant components on the Spanish coast were evaluated. The results of the project provided the basis for preparing the “Strategy to adapt the coast to the effects of climate change”, in accordance with the provisions of Law 2/2013 of 29 May, on the protection and sustainable use of the coast and amending Law 22/1988, of 28 July, on Coasts.
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RISK TO PORT INVESTMENTS OR OPERATIONS DUE TO CLIMATE CHANGE AND EXTREME EVENTS – IFC PORTS

The IFC-Ports project (Climate Risk Management: Ports and Water Transport) is financed by the International Finance Corporation (IFC), an investment financing entity of the World Bank. This tool is highly innovative, since it is the first in the industry that is capable of providing the risk profile for a port investment or operation due to climate change and extreme weather events. In addition, it offers a clear example of technology transfer where a methodology and databases have been built, on a scientific basis, that have been implemented in a tool for the stakeholders involved in the port sector.
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RISK TO PORT INVESTMENTS OR OPERATIONS DUE TO CLIMATE CHANGE AND EXTREME EVENTS – IFC PORTS

The IFC-Ports project (Climate Risk Management: Ports and Water Transport) is financed by the International Finance Corporation (IFC), an investment financing entity of the World Bank. This tool is highly innovative, since it is the first in the industry that is capable of providing the risk profile for a port investment or operation due to climate change and extreme weather events. In addition, it offers a clear example of technology transfer where a methodology and databases have been built, on a scientific basis, that have been implemented in a tool for the stakeholders involved in the port sector.
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maruca

Climate characterization of Spain’s marine physical environment to optimize port and maritime operations
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maruca

Climate characterization of Spain’s marine physical environment to optimize port and maritime operations
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LET’S TALK.

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Send me a message. I will get back to you as soon as possible

LET’S TALK

Would you like to know how we can help you?
Send me a message. I will get back to you as soon as possible

MELISA MENÉNDEZ GARCÍA

Researcher || Expert in Climate Characterization

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