"The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) was established by WMO and UNEP to assess scientific, technical and socio- economic information relevant for the understanding of climate change, its potential impacts and options for adaptation and mitigation. It is open to all members of the UN and of WMO." - from www.ipcc.ch. In an effort to better visualize the future of climate change, the IPCC releases assessment reports on the current state of the atmosphere and what the future could hold. Models from various atmospheric and oceanic organizations are included in these reports in order to establish a broad understanding of the science. Data from three of the IPCC models following temperature change from 1870 - 2100 have been formatted for Science On a Sphere® .
The models available on SOS are the Climate Model 2.1,
developed by the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory; the
Community Climate System Model 3.0, developed by the National Center for
Atmospheric Research; and the Hadley Centre HadCM3, developed by the
United Kingdom Meteorology Office. All three models have similar
forcing agents. For the past data they use the 20th Century Model
20C3M, which takes into account the historical record of greenhouse gases, sulfate aerosol concentrations, volcanic aerosol optical depths, and historical solar irradiation. For the future, there are two variations. Each model is available using the Special Report on Emissions Scenarios, SRES, A1B scenario, which assumes:
Rapid economic growth
A global population that reaches 9 billion in 2050 and then gradually declines.
The quick spread of new and efficient technologies.
A convergent world - income and way of life converge between regions. Extensive social and cultural interactions worldwide.
A balanced emphasis on all energy sources
In addition, each model is also available using the more ecologically friendly SRES B1 scenario, which assumes:
Rapid economic growth as in A1, but with rapid changes towards a service and information economy.
Population rising to 9 billion in 2050 and then declining as in A1.
Reductions in material intensity and the introduction of clean and resource efficient technologies.
An emphasis on global solutions to economic, social and environmental stability.
Even though all of the models use the same inputs, the results vary because each of the three models have differing dynamics and physics parameterizations. In all of the models for the A1B scenario, CO2 production increases until it reaches 717ppm in the year 2100. For the B1 scenario, CO2 production increases until it reaches 621 ppm in the year 2100. The temperatures displayed in the datasets are all a comparison to temperatures in 2000. Blue tones on the visualization represent temperatures cooler than those in 2000, while red tones represent temperatures warmer than those in 2000.
In addition to the six model runs, there is a dataset that utilizes frames from the A1B and B1 scenario as modeled by GFDL for 2025, 2050, 2075, and 2100 in order to compare and contrast the differences between the two scenarios.