New collaborative research programme to support climate change negotiations

4 March 2014

A new research programme which will support international climate change negotiations was launched today by Climate Change Minister Greg Barker.

The aim of the two-year AVOID 2 programme funded by the Living With Environmental Change (LWEC) Partners - Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC), Department for Environment Food & Rural Affairs (Defra) and NERC is to provide robust, policy relevant information that can be drawn upon in international policy discussions in the run up to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) COP21 to be held in Paris in 2015.

The first phase of the programme, AVOID, was established in 2009 to answer questions directly related to the ultimate objective of the UNFCCC to 'prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system'. Ed Davey, Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change recognised it as,

"an impressive demonstration of successful collaboration between academia and Government. ...[delivering] concrete outcomes."

AVOID 2 will focus on six research areas tackling critical knowledge gaps that have direct relevance to policy discussions in the run up to the Paris meeting. It will also help interpret the implications of any new global agreement.

Climate Change Minister Greg Barker said of the new programme,

"If left unabated, climate change will have a devastating effect and the UK Government has shown early and consistent leadership and adopted some of the most ambitious climate change targets in the world.

But it's not just governments that need to take action. With the UK's leading research organisations working together with international partners, the AVOID 2 programme is helping to answer vital questions on climate change that will inform our international climate negotiations."

NERC has contributed £100k to the £1·45m research programme. It will run between February 2014 and March 2016. AVOID 2 will be delivered by a multi-disciplinary consortium led by the Met Office Hadley Centre and including the Grantham Institute for Climate Change at Imperial College London, the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research, and the Walker Institute at the University of Reading.