Climate and climate change has high impact on society. Better understanding and improved prediction skills of future weather and climate is vital to protect lives, goods and infrastructures. Different sectors of society and infrastructure are more or less designed to accommodate the current level of climate variability. The prospect of a changing climate necessitates adapting these designs. To prevent high costs, it is of paramount importance that the most reliable and accurate climate information is used to underpin the development of new adaptation strategies.
In response to this need, climate scientists, in close cooperation with climate impact specialists, have started to generate and provide information on future climate projections, aimed at supporting adaptation policies. These efforts are often organized at a national level and, at present, differ considerably in the methods used and the level of user involvement. It has been recognized (WMO-WCC3, EU White paper on Adaptation) that coordination of climate services at an international level would greatly advance the benefits of climate science for adaptation policies. This effort must find a way to deal with the strong local nature of climate impacts and adaptation needs.
The central objective of ECLISE is to take the first step towards the realisation of a European Climate Service. ECLISE is a European effort in which researchers, in close cooperation with users, develop and demonstrate local climate services to support climate adaption policies. It does so by providing climate services for several climate-vulnerable regions in Europe, organized at a sectorial level: coastal defence, cities, water resources and energy production. Furthermore, ECLISE will define, in conceptual terms, how a pan-European Climate Service could be developed in the future, based on experiences from the aforementioned local services and the involvement of a broader set of European decision makers and stakeholders.