2021 Great Lakes Climate Modeling Workshop

Funded by: Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement (GLWQA) Annex 9 on Climate Change Impacts

Project Summary

In 2019, GLISA co-hosted the first Great Lakes Climate Modeling Workshop with Ontario Climate Consortium (OCC) in Ann Arbor (MI). This workshop reviewed existing Great Lakes regional climate modeling efforts, shared preliminary results from relevant studies in Canada and the United States, worked to identify current gaps and uncertainties, and developed recommendations for future work. Results from the workshop are discussed in this report and are being used to inform the planning of the second Great Lakes Climate Modeling Workshop this year.

With support from the NOAA Great Lakes Regional Collaboration Team and Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC), GLISA will co-host a second Great Lakes Climate Modeling Workshop in March 2021 to: 1) review the existing Great Lakes regional climate modeling efforts, including the strengths, limitations, and credibility of climate change projections; 2) share preliminary results from relevant work and models in Canada and the United States; 3) identify gaps and areas of greatest uncertainty; and, 4) develop recommendations for future work. Specifically, the workshop will span four days with one day dedicated to discussing each of the following: physical climate modeling, bias and bias correction, lake level impacts modeling, and translating climate information. A workshop report will follow to summarize discussions and opportunities so that climate modelers and practitioners can work together to improve these models through funding, collaboration, and engagement activities. The workshop will be held remotely due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

About the Workshop

The 2021 virtual workshop will bring together climate modelers, translators, and information users to advance the state of climate modeling, translation, and integration into climate adaptation efforts across the Great Lakes region. The workshop will focus on progress made on the nine recommendations in the 2019 report and broaden the scope to focus on model bias and lake levels during four sessions:

  1. Physical climate modeling
  2. Bias & bias correction
  3. Lake level impact modeling
  4. Translating climate information

Sessions will be held from 11:00-1:30 Eastern Time on four days during the week of March 22, 2021. A detailed agenda will be added in mid-February.

Workshop Agenda

Monday 3/22 11-1:30 (EST): Introduction & Physical Climate Modeling I

*Co-chairs: Biljana Music (Ouranos), Brent Lofgren (NOAA Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory)

  • 11-12: Welcome & Introductions
    • Workshop Goals & Objectives: Shaffina Kassam (Environment and Climate Change Canada) and Jennifer Day (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration), (Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement Annex 9 (Co-chairs)
    • Attendee Introductions 
    • Gaps in Regional Knowledge & Modeling – Review of 2019 Workshop & Report: Frances Delaney (Environment and Climate Change Canada) and Glenn Milner (Climate Risk Institute) 
    • Break (10 minutes)
  • 12-1:30: Physical Climate Modeling I
    • Session Introduction & Context: Michael Notaro (University of Wisconsin – Madison)
    • Impact of the Atmospheric Moisture Budget on the Seasonality of Great Lakes Precipitation: Samar Minallah (University of Michigan, Climate & Space Science and Engineering)
    • Climate Science for Adaptation and Resilience: Donald Wuebbles (University of Illinois) 
    • Question & answer, facilitated discussion

Tuesday 3/23 11-1 (EST): Physical Climate Modeling II – Bias & Bias correction

*Co-chairs: Alex Cannon (Environment and Climate Change Canada), Laura Briley (Great Lakes Integrated Sciences and Assessments)

  • Framing Bias and Bias Correction of Model Simulations for Climate Adaptation Applications: Ricky Rood (University of Michigan, GLISA)
  • Impacts of Climate Model Bias Correction on Hydrologic Simulations: Andre Erler (Aquanty/University of Toronto)
  • Bias Correction Adjustment, Statistical Downscaling And Other Things (That Go Bump In The Night): : John Lanzante (NOAA Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory) 
  • Break (10 minutes)
  • Question & answer, facilitated discussion

Wednesday 3/24 11-1 (EST): Lake Level Impact Modeling 

*Co-chairs: Frank Seglenieks (Environment and Climate Change Canada), Drew Gronewold (University of Michigan School for Environment and Sustainability)

  • Session Introduction & Context: Frank Seglenieks (Environment and Climate Change Canada) and Drew Gronewold (University of Michigan, SEAS)
  • Multivariate Statistical Analysis of Compound Flooding over the Great Lakes Coastal Zones: Characterizing the Joint Behaviour of Coastal Water Levels, Heavy Rainfall and River Flows: Reza Najafi (Western University) 
  • Global Climate Modeling of Hydroclimate & Projected Precipitation Extremes: Sarah Kapnik (NOAA Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory)
  • Break (10 minutes)
  • Question & answer, facilitated discussion 

Friday 3/26 11-1 (EST): Translating Climate Information 

*Co-chairs: Frances Delaney (Environment and Climate Change Canada), Laura Briley (Great Lakes Integrated Sciences and Assessments)

  • Session Introduction & Context: GLISA’s Climate Translator Role in the Region: Featuring Consumer Reports for Climate Information: Laura Briley (University of Michigan, GLISA)
  • Building Capacity Through Training: Bridging the Gap from Climate Science to Engineering: Glenn Milner (Climate Risk Institute)
  • From Climate Projections to Engineering Design: The Case of IDF Curves: Ryan Ness (Canadian Institute for Climate Choices)
  • The Climate Explorer: serving LOCA downscaled climate projections in support of climate adaptation: Ned Gardiner (NOAA)
  • Break (10 minutes)
  • Question & answer, facilitated discussion
To register, please contact Erin Maher (eemaher@umich.edu)

Project Accomplishments

  • Remote workshop focusing on discussing physical climate modeling, bias and bias correction, lake level impacts modeling, and translating climate information;
  • Report including: a discussion of climate change impacts and the need for climate modeling in the Great Lakes Basin; an overview of climate models that incorporate Great Lakes conditions; an inventory of models in the Great Lakes region; limitations, gaps, and uncertainties; applying climate model information across the Great Lakes Basin; possible users of climate model information; climate service providers across the Great Lakes Basin; recommendations for climate modelers, translators, and users; and finally, conclusions and next steps for the region. See the 2019 Report

Research findings

  • Development of recommendations for future work;
  • Understanding of the current state of modeling in the Great Lakes region specifically relating to physical climate modeling, bias and bias correction, lake level impacts modeling, and translating climate information.

GLISA Contribution

  • Coordinate the planning of the workshop including facilitating meetings, conducting literature reviews, and drafting and sending invitations;
  • Assist in the facilitation of the workshop sessions;
  • Present on bias and bias correction in the Great Lakes region and the role of climate translators;
  • Contribute to the development of a final report after the conclusion of the workshop.

Project Partners

  • NOAA Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory (GLERL)
  • NOAA Great Lakes Regional Collaboration Team, Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC)
  • Midwest Regional Climate Center (MRCC)

GLISA Contact

Jenna Jorns, Program Manager, jljorns@umich.edu