Issue 1, March 2010
Welcome to the first issue of CATS e-News!
This will be published monthly and aims to give a round-up of CATS
upcoming and recent activities - be it conference attendance/
presentations, papers in preparation or submitted, progress on research,
new projects and appointments, etc. We hope it will prove useful as a
means of keeping everyone in touch with each other's activities. Feel
free to send any feedback to Lyn
Leonard Smith will be
the following presentations:
- Using Empirically
Models to inform Your Subjective Probabilities: How might Solvency
II inform climate change decisions?' to be presented by at
Oxford Maths Institute, Oxford, 12 March 2010
- 'Uncertainty, Ambiguity
Risk in Forming Climate Policy' (by Lenny & Nick Stern) to
presented at Handling uncertainty in science, Royal Society, London,
22 March 2010.
- 'Getting beyond the
statistics: Towards Quantifying the Geometry of Model Error' to
be presented at the RMetS ‘Estimating/representing forecast and
model errors’ meeting, 8th April, Met Office.
- The Bayesian's
Burden: Or Why
Physicists Shrug and Statisticians Scoff' to be presented at
the NCAS/NERC Earth System Science Spring Summer School,
- 'Can we expect to
climate when we cannot shadow the weather?' to be presented at
EGU 2010, Vienna, 2-7th May.
David Stainforth will be attending
the following workshops/ meetings:
- Tyndall Hadley Workshop on
emissions pathways at MRC office on Wed 10th March.
- Tyndall resilience Workshop in
Oxford on Friday 26th March. (Not sure if attending yet).
- RCEP launch of it's climate
change adaptation report, London, Tuesday 30th. Lord Krebs and Sir
John Lawton speaking. Dave is going. He can pass on an invite to others
- Science Media Centre briefing on climate change, afternoon of Wednesday 31st.
Various journalists will be talking - including Fred Pearce,
Richard Black etc., and also Brian Hoskins and Alan Thorpe.
- Martin Ambaum et al
meeting in Reading on the thermodynamics of the climate system, 21-22 April.
Dave can pass on details to anyone interested.
Nicola Ranger will be
participating in a 'town hall' meeting hosted by the Wharton School
(Howard Kunreuther) on the interpretation of long-term hurricane
projections for decision-support in New York on 11th March.
will be giving a seminar at
the Met Office on March 15th on the work that he did as an intern there,
titled "Probabilistic Networks for Climate Risk".
Max Fehr and Pauline Barrieu
have been asked to organise two sessions for the 'Energy and
Emission Markets' stream of the EURO XXIV (24th European
on Operational Research), in Lisbon, July 11-14.
Lenny, Dave, Nicola, Falk, Ana, Milena) have submitted abstracts to
11th INTERNATIONAL MEETING on STATISTICAL CLIMATOLOGY (IMSC) in
Edinburgh, 12-16 July.
Papers & other
Papers recently finished:
Fehr M., Hinz J. 'Storage costs
in commodity option pricing' submitted to Siam Journal on
Carmona R., Fehr M. 'The Clean Development Mechanism and CER
Price Formation in the Carbon Markets'. Journal details tbc. (Also
published as Conference Proceedings in a Birkhaeuser (Springer) book.
Carmona R., Fehr M. 'Auctions and Relative Allocation
Mechanisms for Cap-and-Trade Schemes'' To be submitted.
Smith, LA., Du, HL: 'Parameter estimation using Ignorance'
under revision for Physics Review Letter
Ana Lopez recently finished the following two book chapters:
A. Lopez, Rob Wilby, Fai Fung and Mark New, "Emerging approaches to
climate risk management" in "Climate change and water resources modeling"
edited by Fai Fung, A Lopez and Mark New to be published by Wiley-Blackwells
in the fall.
A. Lopez, "A case study of water resource management in the South West
of England" in "Climate change and water resources modeling" edited by
Fai Fung, A Lopez and Mark New to be published by Wiley-Blackwells in
Nicola Ranger has been working on
what will be the 1st Industry Briefing of the Munich Re Programme:
'Aiming for 2 degrees: what does it mean for the Insurance Industry?'
R. Young, R. Binter, F. Niehoerster, L.A. Smith 'Shadowing the
Rotating Annulus', in preparation for Physica D
Smith, LA., Du, HL, Higgins, S. and Binter, R: 'Neccesary
Conditoins for assigning Sensible Model Weights in Seasonal and Decadal
Forecasting', in preparation for Tellus
Du, HL and Smith, LA: 'Improvement in Full Probability
Forecasting at Seasonal Lead-times', in preparation for Quarterly
Journal Royal Meteo Soc
Binter, R and Smith, LA: "Establishing Skill in Long-range
Forecast Systems", in preparation for Monthly Weather Review
Stainforth, D: "Quantifying and dealing with uncertainty in
climate related models", a 2-page "box" in a CUP book coming out of the
Copenhagen scientific meeting this time last year
F. Niehoerster, M.Collins, U.Cubasch,
"Uncertainty in the feedback mechanisms of the climate system",
in preparation for Journal of Climate
A. Lopez: book chapter: "Regional Implications" in "Solutions to
Climate Change challenges" edited by Proverbs, David G , Hammond, Felix
, Lamond, Jessica, to be published by Wiley-Blackwells
A Lopez et al, "Review on probabilistic approaches and their
applicability to impact studies"
A. Lopez et al, "Climate Modeling information for adaptation:
methods to quantify impacts of climate change and reliable information
Eric Neumeyer and Fabian
Barthel will be meeting with Munich Re (Peter Hoeppe, Jan Eichner,
Eberhard Faust) on Friday 5th March for discussions on their
normalization work (programme 5c).
Max Fehr, Pauline Barrieu and Umut
Cetin have been working on a model for risk neutral futures price
dynamics in the European Unions Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS).
Historical price dynamics suggest that both allowance prices for
different compliance periods and CER prices for different compliance
periods are significantly related. To obtain a realistic price dynamics
we take into account the specific details of the EU ETS compliance
regulations, such as banking and the link to the Clean Development
Mechanism (CDM), and exploit arbitrage relationships between futures on
EU allowances and Certified Emission Reductions.
Max will also talk about this at an
Industrial-Academic Forum on Commodities, energy markets, and emissions
trading, April 9-10 at the Fields Institute in Toronto.
Falk Niehoerster, Nicoal Ranger, and
Lenny Smith work on Hurricanes: The predictability of
Hurricane frequency and intensity is investigated on seasonal to
multi-decadal timescales. Comparison and verification of different
statistical approaches are conducted in addition to expert elicitation.
The goal is to generate scenarios of future development of Hurricane
activities for adaptation decision making.
Roman Binter, Hailang Du, Falk
Niehoerster and Lenny Smith work on Seasonal to Decadal
Predictability: The predictability of important atmospheric
phenomena is investigated in seasonal to decadal (s2d) predictions
produced in the multi-model framework of the ENSEMBLES project. Impact
relevant indices like the sea surface temperature (SST) in the main
development region for hurricanes (MDR) and the Nino3.4 index (related
to the El Nino phenomenon) as well as the global mean temperature (GMT)
are currently the focus of the analysis.
Falk Niehoerster and Lenny Smith
work on SVD on ICE - Linearity questions in climate modelling:
The question of linearity in general circulation model (GCM) simulations
of global warming as a function of a increasing atmospheric CO2
concentration is another focus. The assumption that climate response is
"linear" is widely used and multiply defined. Indeed, the assumption of
linearity is crucial for several applications of climate science
including pattern scaling. The extent to which linearity approximations
hold is evaluated in large (~2^9)) initial condition ensembles (ICE).
These simulations consider the equilibrium response of HadSM3 to three
different levels of CO2 concentration increase. By comparing the
singular value decomposition (SVD) and the leading singular vectors of
the three initial condition ensembles we evaluate not only the relevance
of the linearity assumption, but also the robustness of the principal
pattern of temperature change.
NERC have issued a call "Storm Risk Mitigation through Improved Prediction & Impact
closing date 25th March. We plan to submit a proposal to this. If
has particular ideas on this please let Lenny/Lyn know. For details of
the call see:
The Grantham Institute and
Department of Statistics will be submitting a joint application to the
AXA Research Fund for an endowed Chair in Climate Change Risk and
Uncertainty, for which we are proposing the appointment of Professor
René Carmona of Princeton University.
Closing date is 14th May 2010.
Henry Wynn is Co-I on an
EPSRC application to be submitted shortly by Dr Mark Atherton at Brunel
University, entitled: Piezoelectric Bimorphs with Adaptive
Dust storm, Sydney
Professor on our Munich Re programme, will be visiting LSE from 26th
April to 21st May.
Mike Wehner from Berkeley
would be keen to visit for a while at some stage. He's interested in and
has done some work on hurricane simulations. Dave
Peter Rayner from Melbourne
is in Paris for a few months. He gave a great talk at the RS on
"Reducing Uncertainties in future terrestial carbon sinks: an approach
using process models and data assimilation". He uses a perturbed physics
approach. A little over interpreted but generally cautious. He would like to
talk with us. There would be relevance to our interests in model
interpretation, philosophy of climate science and Grantham more
generally. It would be great if we could get him over before he goes
back to Australia sometime in May. Dave.
New projects / appointments
Nicola Ranger is leading a
project for the Adaptation Sub-Committee on "What would a good
adaptation decision-making process look like for the UK?" to be
completed by the end of March, together with Ana Lopez, Antony Millner,
Gianni Ruta and Simon Dietz.
The NERC EQUIP
(End-to-End Quantification of Uncertainty for Impacts Prediction) is
under way. For details of the project see:
homepages.see.leeds.ac.uk/~earac/equip.html. We have
a new postdoc, Emma Suckling (a nuclear physicist by
training but soon to become our project statistician!) who will be
starting in the next couple of months.
Dave Stainforth's NERC
will get underway sometime between now and October, with the appointment of a new PhD
on Relating Climate Models and Reality
Climate Change and
Insurance Industry (CCII): sadly, due to difficulties trying to fulfil
the secondment criteria on this project, it looks as though we will
to withdraw from this project. We nevertheless hope to maintain our
research collaboration with our Norwegian partners, and Lenny, Du and
Falk hope to visit them for a week in April or May.
Noha Youssef, research
student on the project MUCM (Managing Uncertainty in Complex Models) has
been appointed as the Research Officer on MUCM/MUCM2 as of 1st April
Joe Daron has joined CATS as
a (third year) research student, having transferred from Exeter (with
Dave Stainforth). His working thesis title is: Extracting Decision
Relevant Information from Climate Models for the Insurance Industry. Joe
is funded by an ESPRC-Lloyd's CASE studentship. For the last 6 months he
has been on an internship at the UK Met Office.
(MIT) has been appointed as a new
Visiting Professor to the Munich Re programme, March 2010 - February
has joined CATS as a part-time
administrative assistant, helping Lyn with accounts paperwork but also
the website, database and other record management.
Sadly (for us,
for him), Reason Machete has left CATS to take up a postdoctoral position at Reading
as of 1st March.
Reason has been appointed to a five year position of Postdoctoral
Research Assistant in Mathematical Modeling for the Digital Economy in
the Mathematics Department at the University of Reading. The project is
funded by RCUK Digital Economy and will involve academic partnership
with the Universities of Nottingham, Cambridge, Reading, Exeter and
Central Saint Martins. The Reading team will comprise Professor Peter
Grindrod, Reason and a PhD student. Reason will be responsible for the
Mathematical Modeling aspect of the project. There are 30 industrial
partners, among which are BT, Microsoft, BBC, Oracle and Experian.
However, we hope to appoint Reason as a Visiting Fellow to CATS soon
(no-one ever leaves completely ;o)
Reason's last (official) day at the B717
Round up: Recent
Forecasts into Year Ahead Hurricane Numbers: The Outlook and Some
Advances in ENSEMBLES' Presented by Leonard Smith
at Environmental Risk Management workshop (NERC + Maths KTN), Lloyds,
explanation in our nonlinear world' Presented by Leonard
Smith (with comments by Roman Frigg) at
Barcelona Conference on Causality and Explanation in Physics, Biology
and Economics, 18 February 2010
Climate Models' Presented by Leonard Smith,
Roman Frigg, Seamus Bradley at LSE Choice
Group seminar, LSE, 3 February 2010. Abstract
'Challenges in the
Extraction of Decision Relevant Information from Multi-Decadal Ensembles
of GCMs' Presented by Dave Stainforth
at SAMSI workshop on Climate Change, February 2010;
'Difficulties in Deriving Forecast Probabilities From
General Circulation Models and Efforts to Estimate Uncertainty in Future
Climate projections' Presented by Dave Stainforth
at “Nonstationarity, Hydrologic Frequency Analysis and Water Resource
Management” workshop, 13-15 January 2010, Boulder Colorado
and the EQUIP launch meeting.
Max Fehr has just been awarded the
"Walter Saxer-Versicherungs-Hochschulpreis" prize from
ETH in Zurich for his PhD thesis - title "Market Design for Emission
Trading Schemes". The prize is awarded for research in insurance
mathematics or related fields, by a consortium consisiting of Generali
Assurances, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Swiss Life, Swiss Re, Winterthur
Insurance, Zurich Financial Services.