Academic journal article The Science Teacher

Climate Wizard

Academic journal article The Science Teacher

Climate Wizard

Article excerpt

A web tool that generates color maps of projected temperature and precipitation changes using 16 of the world's most prominent climate-change models is being used to consider such things as habitat shifts that will affect endangered species, places around the world where crops could be at risk because of drought, and temperatures that could cripple fruit and nut production in California's Great Central Valley.

Climate Wizard, a tool meant for scientists and nonscientists alike, was demonstrated in Copenhagen, Denmark, in conjunction with the United Nations Climate Change Conference. "Climate Wizard is meant to make it easier to explore climate data in an interactive way," says Evan Girvetz, who worked on the project during postdoctoral work at the University of Washington (UW)'s School of Forest Resources. "It makes the data accessible in ways that are more intuitive, even for people who are not climate scientists."

For example, data used by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)--the science organization evaluating the risks of climate change--is made visual and more readily understandable through Climate Wizard. Politicians, resource managers, and citizens are all potential users, Girvetz says. …

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