In the light of the UN Climate Conference in Copenhagen the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) together with the German Technical Cooperation (GTZ) presented a preview of its climate service "ci:grasp" (Climate Impacts: Global and Regional Adaptation Support Platform) last thursday.
"The central idea behind our platform is to develop a science-based tool to support decision making on adaptation to climate impacts at the regional level," says Jürgen Kropp, Head of the North-South research group at PIK, which is developing the ci:grasp platform. The methodological approach guarantees higher efficiency of financial investments into adaptation measures as they can be focused and their effects be maximized.
The climate service ci:grasp was presented as part of a public side event organized by the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research at the UN Conference in Copenhagen. Audience response was utterly positive and participants of the side event commended that the platform is targeting the crucial problem in climate adaptation: the need for a sound climate service linking impacts and potential solutions in a clear-cut manner.
"Local stakeholders are willing to multiply climate knowledge but need support in filtering the essentials out of the flood of information," said Jan-Peter Schemmel, project head of ci:grasp at the GTZ. Side event panelist Syamsidar Thamrin, deputy director of the climate change department at the environment directorate of the Indonesian National Development Planning Board, added: "The web-based platform ci:grasp offers a sound instrument to meet the challenge of bringing together all the different pieces of regional climate impacts and adaptation information into one puzzle and thereby making it easy to understand the relevant information for decision-makers at the regional level."
"It is not just a hype of data," says Jan-Peter Schemmel of GTZ. He stresses the particular strength of ci:grasp in helping stakeholders face the challenge of adaptation by providing them with experiences from other places in the world. "Knowledge about regional climate impacts and information on adaptation is upgraded by making regional climate impacts and adaptation to their effects comparable," adds Jürgen Kropp.
The project started at the end of 2008. For its first phase analyses, threshold countries like Brazil, Indonesia, the Philippines and Tunisia have been selected. In the long term, the open web-based platform aims for global coverage of standardized knowledge about climate impacts and relevant adaptation options. The methodological approach focuses on the transferability of experiences and lessons learned in adaptation measures so that decision-makers in other regions can profit from shared knowledge, resulting also in a reduction of adaptation costs. "Our project partners at the GTZ support us with their global network of regional stakeholders," says Jürgen Kropp. ci:grasp is jointly run by PIK and GTZ and is funded by the German Federal Ministry for Environmental Protection, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU).
Jan Peter Schemmel, project head of ci:grasp at the GTZ, firstname.lastname@example.org
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