Climate Futures is a framework for developing plausible scenarios of future climate for adaptation, mitigation, and sustainability efforts at local, regional, and global scales. The framework includes a means for using data to examine climate impacts on commodities. At the core of Climate Futures is the Climate Reanalyzer, an interactive website for visualizing an array of climate and weather models and station data. Here, we provide a roadmap for how to utilize Climate Reanalyzer and to develop plausible scenario plans for your region of interest. Climate Futures and Climate Reanalyzer are initiatives of the Climate Change Institute (CCI) at the University of Maine.
Climate Futures is built upon the understanding of climate developed through peer-reviewed scientific publications and summarized by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). IPCC is an assembly of scientists, policy makers, and stakeholders from 195 countries who, through a series of workshops, developed a compromise agreement concerning the state of Earth’s climate system. IPCC conclusions form the basis for international efforts on climate such as the Paris Agreement, and provide a summary for the science-based conclusion that climate is changing and that humans are the primary cause. IPCC also suggests that more research is needed to predict climate change at local to regional scales, better understand possible non-linear rates of change that current global climate models are not well suited to predict, and to present climate projections in formats applicable and relevant to the workings of society. Climate Futures addresses the foregoing by providing a publicly accessible platform for examining climate data from which local to regional scale plausible scenarios can be developed.