Tuesday, December 6, 2011


From: "Mike Hulme" <m.hulme@uea.ac.uk>
To: <t.d.davies@uea.ac.uk>, <c.bentham@uea.ac.uk>, <p.jones@uea.ac.uk>, <j.palutikof@uea.ac.uk>, <p.liss@uea.ac.uk>, <r.k.turner@uea.ac.uk>, <j.darch@uea.ac.uk>, <a.watkinson@uea.ac.uk>, <k.brown@uea.ac.uk>, <parryml@aol.com>
Subject: national climate change centre meeting - documents
Date: Sun, 3 Oct 1999 22:19:48 +0100
Cc: <m.hulme@uea.ac.uk>

Dear All,

Here are some notes and suggestions for our national climate centre meeting
on Monday morning (1000hrs). A suggested agenda of the main points we need
to cover is in this email. The attached document has three components
(also appended as text to the email):

A suggested Outline Bid structure with some comments/questions
A draft of a possible 600-word opening statement
A draft of the six (from original four) research challenges (ca. 2,400

We really need to aim to get a first full draft of the bid out to our
Partners by late Wednesday this week, thus allowing 7 days for iterations.


NCCC: UEA Working Group Meeting, 4 October

Suggested Agenda

1. The research challenges (draft attached)

2. RD and Schneider (?)

3. The Assessment Panel; key issues for Schellnhuber

4. The structure of the outline proposal (see attached suggestion)

5. The name of the Centre

6. Timetable for submission (8 working days left)


Outline Proposal
Suggested Contents � cf. invitation to bid

Opening Statement (500 words)

Who are the co-applicants?
Hulme, Davies, Jones, Liss, Palutikof, Parry, Turner, Watkinson, Brown?
Allen, Arnell, Berkhout, Bristow, Cannell, Choularton, Halliday, Jenkins,
Kohler, Launder, Markvard, Reynard, Shepherd, Shackley? � is this too many?

The strengths of the UEA-led Team (1000 words)
- being drafted by UMIST

Research Director 100 words

Management team, structure, strategy (500 words)
Advisory Board - Hasselmann, Rotmans, McQuaid, Mary Archer (Chair of
National Energy Foundation), Basil Butler (RAE), Wigley, and named others?
Management Team, Programme Leaders,
What building do we use? � and a suggested physical presence at Southampton

Initial research plan/agenda - the Challenges (2000 words)
0-order draft (attached)

How will we achieve - integration, collaboration, exploit results, attract
funding? (500 words) (this might be folded into the discussion of the
strengths of the UEA Team)

integrated research
formal or informal integration; IAMs are one way, but I'm not so keen on
them. Some research themes may develop their own limited IAMs, e.g.
optimal policy. Overall informal integration may be achieved through a
common scenario approach/framework
collaboration in UK and abroad
establish MoUs with parallel centres abroad � RIVM (Neth.), PIK (Germany),
ICIS (Neth.), MIT (US), Batelle (US), TERI (India), CICERO (Norway), etc.
��.. Host an international conference early on to 'position' the UK NCCC
in the wider field.
relevant and strategic research results and knowledge-transfer
establish regular policy briefings, both written and verbal, targeted at
the business community; CBI link; UKCIP. Have a strong media presence,
with a p-t communications person.
attract additional funding
may be not so easy, cf. UKCIP on impacts research have only been able to
mobilise small amounts of money. Need some big corporate sponsors � what
do we say about this in the outline bid?. Appoint a p-t 'marketing' person
(maybe the other half of communications).

Training strategy (250 words)
Ring-fence money for training/workshops/fellowships - how much?

Training not just for researchers, but also for managers in public/private
sectors. These could be 1-day sessions, as well as longer 1-week courses
(cf. the Harvard course), and also longer-term secondments.

Should also maximise our links with the B.Council and DfID to bring
international scientists and policy-advisors into the loop. These people
can act to facilitate the two-way flow and testing of ideas between UK and
developing countries. Some of our research themes would have global
dimensions � optimal policy, C sequestration, ��

UNESCO Southampton

Financial plan - salaries, equipment, sub-contracted research,
collaboration expenses
- estimates from Trevor

Operations timetable - phases, etc.
- what ideas do we have for this?

Other contacts
institutions involved, but outside the bid
BRE, BAS, NRI, POL, LSHTM, AEA, Hadley Centre, UKCIP, etc.

other academic/user bodies who are relevant
RIVM, ICIS, TERI, RDBs, BP, Fuji, PowerGen, BP Solarex, ETSU/DTI
photovoltaic test facility, Severn-Trent,


1 page CVs for co-applicants
signed statement from institution(s)

[extraction of purpose from the RC's document ��.. the integration of
scientific research that will shape and underpin sustainable solutions to
the climate change challenge].

Possible Opening Statement

The prospect of human-induced global climate change initially emerged as a
research challenge for the natural sciences. Since the causes of climate
change are profoundly rooted in society and the consequences of climate
change for society can only be understood through social and cultural
insight, the social sciences have become increasingly engaged in the
research effort. With attention now turning to 'solutions' to climate
change, new climate change management strategies need identifying and
promoting, need to be targeted at both mitigation and adaptation
objectives, and need to embrace a full array of emerging policy instruments
and engineering technologies. The participation of the engineering and
technological sciences, alongside the environmental and social sciences,
has therefore become critical to meet this rapidly evolving research

But climate change is not just intellectually embracing challenge. It is
also an experiential one. Climate change is unique in that it poses
questions on space and time scales over which individual humans (especially
space) and governments (especially time) are not used to thinking or do not
find it easy to think. In this sense climate change is a problem of
ultimate penetration and of ultimate connectivity; penetration, because we
will all experience and react to climate change in some way, and
connectivity, because emissions are driven by a global economy, because the
response of the physical system is planetary, and because these social and
natural systems are intimately co-evolving.

The intellectual and experiential challenges of climate change create a new
and distinctive lens through which we can envision the future. These
insights into the future - often termed scenarios - suggest to us various
tools and instruments that may allow us to fashion and shape the future.
This sets us out on a course of climate change management, an active and
considered pursual of desirable long-term objectives. Establishing such
objectives is essential in order to adequately define the 'problem' of
climate change, and even more essential if 'solutions' to this problem are
going to be designed. The prospect of climate change, at the very least
therefore, forces us to think about what sort of future we regard as

The UEA-led Consortium sees the new national climate change centre as an
exciting opportunity to build connected research structures and outputs
that exploit partnerships between science and business, between the
household and government, and between the UK and emerging parallel
initiatives around the world. With a strong foundation of
inter-disciplinary research, and through the engaging of both public and
private organisations and of both governments and individuals, there is a
real prospect that we can implement emerging 'solutions' to climate change
and create new ones. These 'solutions' need to engage with both mitigation
and adaptation objectives and, most importantly, need to recognise and
function on a hierarchy of scales ranging from the household to the global.
The UK climate change centre will be built around three key principles:

The deployment of practised, inter-disciplinary research teams, who have
already pioneered new insights and approaches into the questions raised by
climate change, but releasing them to explore novel approaches for thinking
laterally across natural, social and engineering sciences.

The practising of an inclusionary process of research in which we explore -
with their developers - ways of mobilising many of the new technologies,
lifestyles, regulatory mechanisms that are emerging from our technological,
social and political cultures to allow us to manage climate change in the
twenty-first century.

The establishment of a focal point in the UK and abroad for the open and
constructive exchange of insights concerning climate change solutions
across cultural divides - public-private, households-corporations,

These three key characteristics - a research programme, an engagement with
stakeholders, and an educational/opinion-shaping role - are the three
central elements of the new centre as proposed by the UEA-led Consortium.
[Given the essential need for integration in all three of these elements,
we propose the centre by called the "UK Centre for Integrated Climate
Change Studies" (UK CICCS)]. The rest of this outline proposal will
demonstrate, in an indicative rather than an exhaustive way, how we would
operationalise these principles in terms of both management and research
ideas. [refer to our conceptual schematic here or later?]

Proposed Challenges to be included in the Outline Bid

Draft, Mike Hulme, 2 October

[It may be worth including some examples of key stakeholder/client
interests under each of these. These six research challenges are
exemplars, for the outline proposal, of the thinking behind our bid. Each
of them may potentially involve all of the Centre's Partners - and numerous
organisations beyond - and each of them are therefore integrating
activities. Each of these Challenges, if developed into Research
Programmes, would have a Programme Leader, appointed from within the
Consortium, and accountable to the Centre's Management Team. Each of the
Challenges should be able to be contextualised by our (revised) conceptual
schematic of the process of integration - if we are still going to show

Challenge 1: Carbon Management

Carbon management poses two fundamental questions. Given a continuing
pre-dominance of fossil carbon fuels how can we combust less (the energy
efficiency question) and given that a proportion of this combusted carbon
will enter the atmosphere how can we sequester larger volumes within the
biosphere and oceans (the carbon sequestration question)? In thinking
about improving our management of carbon, the Centre will address both
these questions.

Combined heat and power plants and decentralised energy generation for
energy intensive industries are areas where technology can make a
considerable contribution to emissions reduction. Locations and markets
where investment in these technologies is both politically and economically
feasible need to be identified. For LDCs, the provisions of the Kyoto
Protocol for Joint Implementation are relevant here. Supplementary
engineering challenges in this area include energy storage systems, fuel
cell and novel transportation technologies.

Research should also be directed to the identification of business
opportunities in the mitigation of climate change. This would involve a
process of identifying 'climate change markets' where UK products and
technologies could be supplied. One potential growth area is that of the
use of modern, cheap control technology to optimise the performance of
household energy management systems. Where growth markets are identified,
suitable technology and service products can be developed. Business could
be approached for ideas through the DTI-funded liaison officer. This work
would also inform development and aid policy within the UK government. We
would also draw upon the extensive experiences of UK agencies involved in
delivering 'win-win' energy and waste minimisation programmes (such as
Energy Efficiency and Environmental Technology Best Practice Programmes,
Ground Work Trust, Business Links, and so on). Other country experiences
would also be useful input, for example the highly effective programmes of
boosting company productivity by reducing greenhouse gas emissions
developed in the USA.

The introduction of the climate change levy in March 2001 will be analysed
by the Centre in terms of its effectiveness at delivering emission
reductions and its costs/benefits to a range of units (firms, sectors,
regions, nationally). In addition, the introduction of voluntary
agreements for some companies in return for a reduction in the levy charged
will be analysed along similar lines. The DTI-ACBE led initiative on
voluntary use of tradeable emission schemes will provide important
empirical evidence on the relative costs of achieving given emission
reductions by a taxation scheme compared to emissions trading.

While conventional carbon sequestration technologies are not considered a
long-term solution to climate change, there is nevertheless a need to
research the most efficient ways of implementing such technologies and also
a need to research new, longer-term sequestration technologies through
bio-engineering and deep ocean sinks. The Centre will explore the
feasibility of both these latter two technologies, in collaboration with
the John Innes Centre for the bio-engineering. [We may only have 30 years
to get some 'emergency' carbon sequestration techniques sorted out under
the scenario that we don't manage to get enough CO2 emissions reduction.]
A mixture of methods and tools will be required to evaluate sequestration
options - life-cycle costing and LCA, environmental impact analysis,
technological assessment, public acceptance, etc. Some work on biomass
sequestration may also be needed to feed into the global
assessments/evaluation of this option. Given the sensitivity of this issue
under the terms of the Kyoto Protocol, the UK government needs excellent
advice on methods, assumptions, pitfalls, etc.

[Links outside the Centre to: JIC, many others �������?.

Challenge 2: The Renewables Challenge

A parallel challenge to that of carbon management is how to stimulate and
release the full potential for zero- or low-carbon renewable energies?
This therefore is the third strand of the strategy to meet and surpass the
carbon emissions reduction obligations placed on developed nations by
Kyoto. There are a number of research questions related to this Challenge
that again require engagement by the engineering, environmental and social
science communities within an integrated framework. Too much work to date
has compartmentalised the three perspectives.

The EU has a target of 12 per cent of primary energy to be met from
renewable energy by the year 2010. Meeting such a target, let alone moving
beyond it, has major implications for the electricity delivery systems in
the UK. How to get this much renewable energy - from intermittent sources
� linked, delivered and purchased by customers? Engineers and economists
need an opportunity to explore the long-term implications of such policy
objectives. Related questions concern the landscape and infrastructural
implications of an expanded uptake of biofuels in the UK.

Many renewable technologies appear in various EPSRC research programmes,
but they need to be brought together to produce scenarios whose emissions
and life-cycle costs can be assessed in a common framework, thus enabling
more practical advice and comment on energy policy debates. Some of these
scenarios could be taken further in the form of pilot-demonstration

There needs to be mechanisms established for the better integration of
architectural design with renewable energies, e.g. solar and wind. The
design of these new technologies needs explicitly to consider the
architectural consequences for domestic, commercial and industrial
structures. Partners who are directly involved in delivering design
solutions in this area will be invited by the Centre to establish
'demonstration' projects to explore how successful such solutions are in
practice. [can we give some specific examples of Partners and projects

One of the obstacles to the more rapid exploitation of wind energy in the
UK relates to landscape value and aesthetics. This is an issue that needs
the interaction of design technologists and social scientists - including
psychologists - to explore cultural and behavioural limits to new renewable
technology uptake. We propose that the visualisation facility of the
Centre be exploited to research these issues through involving the wider

[Links outside the Centre to: ��������

Challenge 3: Singularities, Non-Linear Changes and Extreme Events

The climate system is generally assumed to be 'well-behaved'. Certainly,
much of the scenario and impacts work assessed by the IPCC (and that has
therefore fed through into climate policy) has assumed conditions of
relative regularity in future climate. However, not only does the climate
system possess the potential for rapid, singular changes (i.e., a complex,
non-linear system being rapidly forced), but recent research has shown
using theoretical models and palaeo-evidence that such potential changes
can be and have been realised. Elsewhere, thresholds and sensitivities of
natural/social systems to changing frequencies of extreme weather events
induce additional non-linearities in the environmental responses to climate
change. There are also singularities and non-linear processes operating in
the social/political drivers of climate change - for example, political or
economic 'shocks' that may fundamentally and rapidly re-direct our
technological/economic futures away from 'conventional' pathways.

A particular Challenge to be addressed by the Centre will therefore be how
such potential for non-linear behaviour - in both climate and non-climate
systems - can be both modelled and introduced into scenario exercises.
Recent work with reduced-complexity models has shown the potential to model
such non-linear behaviour in a quasi-stochastic manner and such modelling
work will be developed by the Centre. A corollary of this is to better
understand how such abrupt changes should be assimilated into
decision-making frameworks and policy analysis. This requires the
involvement of risk theoreticians and risk analytic tools. The possible
interactions between these two complex non-linear systems - the climate and
the social - is of particular importance. For example, an abrupt climate
change or a string of short-term weather extremes can radically influence
perceptions amongst the business community and politicians and lead to
sudden shifts in policy, investment flows, etc. The implications of such
singular behaviour for vulnerability and adaptation strategies have not
been well explored. This kind of analysis would be important to many
commercial sectors, which are highly concerned about the unexpected and
about extremes. This is an inter-disciplinary Challenge the Centre will be
uniquely well-placed to address.

[Links outside the Centre to: POL, Hadley Centre, PIK, �����..

Challenge 4: Managing the Coastal Zone

There are many geographic domains where climate change poses particular
problems for the management of natural and social assets - coasts, uplands,
cities, river basins, etc. We propose that the Centre should pay
particular attention to one such domain, since these provide physical
entities within which many of the issues of climate change vulnerability
and adaptation play out in a given context of local/regional governance.
We suggest that the coastal zone best epitomises this challenge of
integrating our social, environmental and engineering knowledge. A unique
feature of the interaction between climate change and the coastal zone is
the very long time-scales over which sea-level rise impacts will
materialise - of all the impacts of climate change these are least amenable
to mitigation and therefore where appropriately designed adaptation
strategies are most needed.

Research is first needed to improve our understanding of the threats posed
by climate change, most notably changing storm-surge frequencies along the
UK coast and changes in estuarine hydrology and ecology. This will involve
coupled high resolution ocean-atmosphere modelling, estuarine
economic/ecological modelling, and the assimilation of such modelling
results into a risk analysis framework.

Designing an array of possible management options for the coastal zone
needs to involve economists, ecologists, marine scientists, and coastal
engineers. A range of options from 'hard' engineering solutions to managed
retreat need identifying. The desirability of any one or combination of
these management options for the coastal zone can then only be evaluated
following an understanding of the value of the coastal environment and the
services it delivers. Such valuation needs to be a fully participatory
process involving local communities, local government, landowners, NGOs,
and national regulatory bodies. We propose the Centre plays an active role
in bringing together insights from integrated modelling exercises and from
stakeholder participatory exercises, thus enabling better public
participation in the policy-forming process (see integration methodologies
- Challenge 6). This role would involve novel visualisation techniques of
coastal environments to exploit both modelling results and individual
perceptions of coastal landscape value.

[Links outside the Centre to: EA/MAFF, NGOs/Conservation, LAs, Railtrack,
construction companies, ����

Challenge 5: Beyond Factor 4

There is a growing body of opinion that in order to mitigate climate
change, or even to adapt to it, significant changes in current patterns of
consumption, and therefore lifestyle, are necessary. This raises the
question of how to direct consumption of goods and services towards more
sustainable paths. The scale of the Challenge here suggests that we need
to go well beyond Factor 4 - doubling wealth, halving resource use.

One unsolved dilemma is that of expanding car use for personal
transportation. The psychology, behavioural sociology and economics of
people's use of cars is reasonably well understood. What needs to be
researched are methods to manage the ever-increasing demand for travel,
especially car and air travel, that ranges from taking the children to
school, to car-based salespeople, to international business and holiday
travel. Research will also be needed into managing the overturning of the
vehicle stock and transport infrastructure under conditions of novel
transportation technologies - infrastructural inertia is an obstacle to new
technology uptake.

The concept of a low consumption household is a further desirable objective
which is easy to state and not straightfoward to achieve. This way of
analysing human activity is inherently interdisciplinary and looks at the
activities of a household - housing, domestic appliances and services,
transport needs, consumption, work and leisure time use, waste generation
and recycling - in terms of the interactions between them. For example,
housing choice is partly determined by the work/leisure split, which then
determines the demand for transport; consumption generates waste and also
contributes to energy demand. Another important example is that of home
insulation. The UK has a poorly insulated housing stock and even new
housing could be built to much higher standards of energy efficiency.
Research, in conjunction with the construction industry, is needed into the
adoption of new building standards and (politically acceptable) economic
incentives for low-energy housing is needed. This is especially relevant
given the current debate about the millions of new households predicted for
the UK in the next 20-30 years and the greenfield/brownfield land use

Partners who are directly involved in delivering sustainable solutions will
be involved in setting up 'demonstration' projects to explore how
successful such methodologies are in practice. For example, the Centre
will explore whether 'climate-friendly' households can be
demonstrated in practice. Partners could include Going for Green, National
Centre for Business and Ecology, Forum for the Future, Sustainability
Northwest, United Utilities, Eastern Group, Anglian Water and other water
companies, etc.

[Links outside the Centre to: �������.

Challenge 6: Integration Methodologies

An important methodology which provides insights into the dynamics of
climate and social change, but which has not yet been fully developed for
the UK is that of integrated assessment. Integrated assessment encompasses
formal modelling approaches and more participatory and qualitative
explorations of the future. Integrated modelling includes both
reduced-form models and complex systems models. All integrated assessment
is built around the concept of scenarios, used either in the more
traditional role of 'what-if' or in a 'back-casting' role. While
integrated assessments of climate change have developed substantially over
the last decade, few have embraced the engineering community to explore the
feasibility of pathways with rapid uptake of new technologies. The
Challenge for the Centre will be to develop further existing modelling and
participatory approaches for integrated assessment and apply them to the
five research Challenges identified above.

The integrated modelling framework that is required to address these
concerns is obviously extremely difficult to imagine. Recent advances based
on complex systems modelling do, however, suggest how such frameworks may
be achieved (e.g. NEXSUS, ESRC Priority Network). These are constituted of
a spatial hierarchy of nested models representing the possible behaviours
of complex social, economic, ecological, and technological systems at
different spatial and temporal scales of resolution. They can explore the
possibility of emergent behaviour at larger scales, as well as the effects
of micro-responses and adaptations at smaller ones. In order to address
the issues raised by climate change and its associated impacts and
responses, considerable development of this framework would be necessary.
However, without it, there seems little prospect of providing a rational
basis for the assessment of possible climate policies or actions.

The Centre will also develop parallel research into participatory
approaches for the development of integrated scenarios of the future. This
will include the public perception of environmental risks caused by climate
change; peoples actions in response to these perceptions is also important.
Identification of suitable scenarios for presentation in participative
experiments on public/corporate response would involve the physical
sciences in co-operation with engineers, political scientists,
psychologists and economists. Methods include surveys, focus groups,
citizens juries and stakeholder workshops. [CSERGE/UMIST developing these
ideas; use the ICER Visualisation Laboratory]. More in-depth empirical
research could be undertaken to understand better individual and
organisational decision-making on climate change related issues, such as
energy consumption, transport choices, and so on. This activity would have
the objective of developing methodologies for assessing the public response
to the particular problems identified in the Carbon Management, Renewables
and Factor 4+ Challenges above. Through interactions with business it may
also open up the possibility of 'design-oriented scenarios', i.e., in which
the scenario identifies a need for a new kind of product/process design in
response to a prospective future socio-political change.

[Links outside the Centre to: other process modelling centres, ULYSSES,

Attachment Converted: "c:\eudora\attach\outline.bid.doc"

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