NZCCC Member Organisation Research
Most people will have some understanding of how humans have impacted the Ozone hole. It provides a useful example of how identifying the cause of the Ozone hole (largely CFC’s) and responding to the issue by reducing our use of CFC’s can have a large impact on a global issue. The Antarctic ozone hole has a major effect on the local climate, and the future of Antarctica will go on to influence global climate and sea level changes.
Whilst climate information is key for understanding past, current, and potential future trends in our climate system, coupled with that are the atmospheric processes that take place. Carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), air quality either force the climate as we know it or respond to changes in the climate. Understanding how CO2 is changing over time is important for projecting how climate may change. This information is therefore very important when studying climate change.
The Global Change Through Time Programme (GCT) will help New Zealand to mitigate and adapt to future climate change by reducing uncertainties in climate models that are used to predict future global warming and its impacts. In particular, the programme will focus on improving predictions of future progressive or abrupt warming, improving predictions of future climate variability, and improving understanding of the carbon cycle.
When Earnest Shakelton's ship "Endurance" was trapped in thick sea ice in Nov 1915, the explorer noted in his diary "What the ice gets, the ice keeps." The statement provides a nice analogy to how ice, built up over time, can provide insight into previous climates, the core purpose of this research project.
Increasing our scientific understanding of the climate system, our ability to predict the climate, and decision-making tools to help New Zealand to adapt to climate variability and change.