New Horizon Europe Project focus on improved understanding of Clouds and Aerosols in Weather and Climate

CERTAINTY: Cloud-aERosol inTeractions & their impActs IN The earth sYstem project, funded by the Horizon Europe program, aims to advance our comprehension of clouds and aerosols in the climate. This project strives to refine and use observations and models to understand and describe the intricate interactions between clouds and aerosols within climate and weather systems.

Emerging observation technologies are being launched to increase our understanding of aerosol-cloud interactions. It is expected that the new EarthCare satellite will be launched soon and will provide new, more accurate satellite-based observations of clouds, aerosols, and radiation. In addition, observational infrastructures provide global coverage of the properties of the atmosphere. This data will be the main source of data for complex computer modelling used for predicting and understanding the role of clouds and aerosols to weather and climate.

Jennie Thomas, project coordinator at Centre national de la recherche scientifique (CNRS) researcher at Institut des Géosciences de l’Environnement (IGE), notes that “we have a world leading team of European experts to address this urgent science need on understanding the roles of clouds and aerosols in weather and climate. We combine modelling and observation expertise to understand cloud-aerosol processes and their links to global climate and society.”

Harri Kokkola, scientific coordinator of CERTAINTY and researcher at Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI) / professor at University of Eastern Finland (UEF), notes that “we aim at combining the wealth of data available from satellites, observations, and models to improve our understanding on how aerosols and clouds modify weather and climate. We hope to bring certainty in this topic that has been a persistent source of uncertainty in predicting weather as well as climate change.”

With a budget of 7.2 million EUR euros from the EU’s Horizon Europe research program, CERTAINTY will be conducted from 2024 to 2028. This initiative aligns with the EU’s commitment to supporting the transition to a low-carbon, resilient future and climate action in accordance with the Paris climate agreement.
Additional funding for the project is provided from Switzerland (880,000 EUR) and the UK (800,000 EUR).

The project has 18 partners institutions:
Centre national de la recherche scientifique (CNRS)
Finnish Meteorological Institute
European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts
Barcelona Supercomputing Center
Koninklijk Nederlands Meteorologisch Instituut
Stockholm University
Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt
National Observatory of Athens
Lund University
University of Eastern Finland
Imperial College London
University of Manchester
University of Helsinki
Technical University of Crete
Max Planck Institute for Meteorology
Ukrainian Hydrometeorological Institute
ETH Zürich
Physikalisch-Meteorologisches Observatorium Davos/World Radiation Center