DATE2016-06-02 11:48:24
AUTHORSChristos Giannakopoulos (1), Dimitra Founda (1), Anna Karali (1), Vasilis Tenentes (1), Iphigeneia Keramitsoglou (2), Chris T. Kiranoudis (2,3)
  1. For Environmental Research And Sustainable Development, National Observatory Of Athens Athens (Greece)
  2. Institute For Astronomy, Astrophysics, Space Applications And Remote Sensing, National Observatory Of Athens Athens (Greece)
  3. School Of Chemical Engineering, National Technical University Of Athens Athens (Greece)
ABSTRACTThe EU project TREASURE (Thermal Risk rEduction Actions and tools for SecURE cities) integrates the expertise of epidemiologists, climatologists, Earth Observation scientists and Information technology specialists to develop new tools for extracting useful and useable information tailored to the needs of relevant authorities and citizens. In this work, we review the provision of climate services targeted to heat wave risk and its impacts on health and energy demand using specifically selected climate indices. Two target sites, where heat waves represent a major health and energy load hazard, are studied: the greater urban area of Athens, Greece and the island of Majorca, Spain. Long term observational data from these areas, spanning a period of at least 40 years, were used to study past and present trends of different climatic and heat related risk indices. Positive and statistically significant long term trends of daily maximum and minimum air temperature were observed in both cities, particularly pronounced in summer and spring. The trend values were similar for daily maximum and minimum air temperature in Athens. However, in Palma, the trend value of the daily minimum air temperature was double the value of the maximum air temperature. The increase of air temperature was accompanied with simultaneous and profound increase in hot days and heat waves frequency in both cities, the magnitude of increase being higher in Athens. Focusing on heat related risk indices, probability distribution functions showed that Athens and Palma reveal similar probabilities for ‘great discomfort’ and ‘significant danger’ episodes. Future calculations for all climate change indices related to heat related risk were based on the daily output of the RACMO2 regional climate model (RCM) at a horizontal resolution of 25km. This model was developed within the framework of the EU project ENSEMBLES (, in which the National Observatory of Athens participated. The calculation of climate change indices were incorporated in the form of map projections and line charts into a web tool providing heat wave, health and energy demand related climate change projections in a time horizon appropriate for medium and longer term policy planning. The aim of the web tool is to become a useful source of easily accessible climate change information for the target areas in the hands of policy makers, authorities and citizens.