The Bjerknes Centre is a collaboration on climate research, between the University of Bergen, NORCE, the Institute of Marine Research, Nansen Environmental and Remote Sensing Centre.

Climate predictions and regional scenarios

Research Group 2

The magnitude and impact of climate change exhibits a significant regional component, and can show pronounced decadal shifts. These may influence extreme weather, marine ecosystems, and water resources around the globe, including Norway and the Arctic, and they may have serious effects on health in lesser-developed countries. The variability in the climate system has therefore implications for mitigation and adaptation planning. RG2 aims to better predict climate variations on decadal timescales and also at a regional level, with a focus on the North Atlantic and Arctic sectors.


Research focus

The climate variability in our region is heavily influenced by the oceanic and atmospheric variability in heat and moisture transports. In order to predict climate variability, it is important to understand the mechanisms behind this variability, and the interactions between sea surface temperatures, Arctic Sea ice and atmospheric patterns.

The main tool to study this is the Norwegian Climate Prediction Model (NorCPM), which consists of the Norwegian Earth System Model (NorESM) with data assimilation. In addition, different regional models for downscaling the atmosphere and the ocean are used.

Important research areas for RG2 Climate Scenarios and Downscaling are:

  • Development of a climate prediction model, and optimal initialization of this.
  • Climate predictions on inter-annual to decadal time scales.
  • Oceanic and atmospheric downscaling, as well as coupled downscaling with accurate representation of surface interactions between ocean, ice, and atmosphere.
  • Added value of downscaling and implications for the larger scale environment.
  • Better representation of uncertainties in model results.
  • Interaction between large-scale circulation changes and small scale processes in producing extreme weather events.
  • Importance of changes in energy transport into the Arctic on Arctic climate change.
  • Changes in the oceanic circulation of the Nordic Seas.
  • Changes in the thermohaline circulation.
  • Changes in marine ecosystems.
  • Teleconnections between precipitation and sea surface temperatures.


Research Group 2

Leader: Anne Britt Sandø
Co-Leader: Noel Keenlyside


Group members:

Laurent Bertino, Stephen Outten, Steffi Gleixner, Martin P. King, Stefan Sobolowski, Stephanie Mayer, Lu Li, Lea Svendsen, Mathew Reeve, Peter Thorne, Bhuwan Bhatt, Ingo Bethke, Francois Counillon , Roohollah Azad, Mari Sandvik , Corinna Schrum, Mao-Lin Shen, Silje Sørland, Ken Drinkwater, Trond Kristiansen, Frode Vikebø, Bjørn Ådlandsvik , Helene Langehaug , Yomin Chen