Given the anticipated interest in rapid climate change issues following next Friday's global release of the Day after Tomorrow Hollywood blockbuster movie, Meric and I have (with advice from our local communication officials) prepared a statement to post on the RAPID web site (see below)...The UK is taking the lead in rapid climate change research. A £20 Million Rapid Climate Change programme (known as RAPID for short) is being funded by the UK Natural Environment Research Council (NERC). The aim of RAPID is to determine the probability of rapid climate change and its likely impact. For the first time, a monitoring system is being set up to monitor changes in the North Atlantic overturning circulation (which is associated with but not quite the same as the Gulf Stream). The UK research vessel RRS Discovery has recently deployed an array of moorings across the N. Atlantic Ocean. Present understanding would suggest that rapid climate change over the next decade is a low probability event, but should it happen, its impact on Western European economy and society would be serious. Hence, we need to improve our knowledge of the processes involved and narrow the uncertainties on the prediction of potential future rapid climate change. That is exactly what the RAPID programme aims to do.
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