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CyI Appointed Grant Holder in new EU COST Action Project “COST MEDCYCLONES”

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COST MEDCYCLONES’s aim is to establish a European network for the study of Mediterranean cyclones. The need for this action stems from the fact that there are still significant gaps in understanding how cyclones can modulate the Mediterranean region in view of a changing climate. 

Cyclones constitute a major environmental risk, often producing windstorms and heavy rainfall. Moreover, cyclones play a key role in the regional climate variability by controlling the oceanic circulation and regional water cycle, and by mobilizing and transporting large amounts of dust from North Africa.

Despite the recent achievements of the scientific community to provide deeper insight into the atmospheric processes and impacts associated with Mediterranean cyclones, there are still unaddressed scientific challenges that require a coordinated approach. In addition, the lack of direct interaction between academic researchers and weather/climate prediction scientists working in operational centres inhibits the efficient exploitation of fundamental research results to improve atmospheric models in a tangible way. This Action will coordinate the activities of researchers in meteorology and climatology and scientists from weather/climate services with the main aims to provide a deeper understanding of Mediterranean cyclones and to improve significantly the European capacity to predict their environmental and climate impacts. In this context, the network will identify, and involve in the network, relevant stakeholders with different backgrounds (e.g. civil protection, re-insurance companies) and co-develop cyclone prediction products tailored to their needs.

MEDCYCLONES was awarded funding of €200.000 in March 2020, for the period October 2020 – November 2024. Subsequently, the project kick-off meeting with COST association representatives was held online in mid-October 2020 during which, the Cyprus Institute was voted in as Grant Holder of the COST19109 action on Mediterranean cyclones by the Management Committee.

The scientific representative for the action is CARE-C Associate Research Scientist, Dr Jonilda Kushta as nominated by the main proposer and unanimously voted by all MC members. Dr Kushta also serves as the leader of WG3 (Socio-economic and environmental impacts).

The action brings together partners from 29 countries.  Further information about the Action Leadership are included below:

  • Dr Emmanouil Flaounas – Chair, HCMR, Greece
  • Dr Silvio Davolio – Vice-Chair, ISAC, Italy
  • Dr Florian Pantillon – WG1 leader, Laboratoire d’Aerologie, France
  • Dr Shira Raveh-Rubin – WG2 leader, Weizmann Institute, Israel
  • Dr Jonilda Kushta – Grant Holder Scientific Representative and WG3 leader, The Cyprus Institute, Cyprus)
  • Prof Margarida Liberado – Science Communication Manager, Universidade de Trás-os-Montes e Alto Douro, Portugal
  • Dr Maria Hatzaki – STSM Coordinator, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Greece

For more details about MEDCYCLONES please visit the COST website.

The Project is funded by the EU COST Association, under the Cost Action CA19109.

Image source: NASA Earth Observatory, using data from the Land Atmosphere Near real-time Capability for EOS. 2016

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