President of The Cyprus Institute, Prof. Costas Papanicolas and General Director of the Israel Meteorological Service (IMS), Dr Nir Stav, shake hands after signing a Memorandum of Understanding
On Monday, 2nd of May 2022, The Cyprus Institute (CyI) via the Climate and Atmosphere Research Centre (CARE-C), signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Israel Meteorological Service (IMS), agreeing to reinforce their collaboration on issues of common interest, in assessing and understanding the impacts of Climate Change. Particularly, this cooperation focuses on a better understanding of Climate Change implications in the Eastern Mediterranean and Middle East (EMME) region, and especially in Cyprus and Israel, as the two countries are sharing similar climate and environmental characteristics, and therefore, are facing similar challenges related to global warming.
The cooperation was initiated through discussions during the presentation of the Eastern Mediterranean and Middle East Climate Change Initiative (EMME-CCI) to stakeholders, policymakers and members of the scientific community in Israel, and is expected to comprise the following types of activities:
- Calibration of the ICON-CLM Climate and Weather model over the Eastern Mediterranean
- Generation of high-resolution climate projections for Cyprus and Israel using the WRF (Weather Research and Forecasting) model
The overall objectives of the cooperation between CyI and IMS are the improvement of future climate projections for Cyprus and Israel, and the better understanding of climate processes and feedbacks that drive changes in mean climate conditions and extremes. Advancements in regional climate modeling activities, data sharing, coordinated studies for understanding weather, and climate processes are some of the activities that could support policymakers in proposing and implementing mitigation strategies and adaptation solutions aiming at tackling the Climate Change impacts in the Eastern Mediterranean hot-spot. The proposed research involves the sharing of knowledge, expertise, and data in the fields of climate analysis and modeling.
These activities include the set-up, testing, and application of advanced climate modeling tools optimized for the Eastern Mediterranean environment. Beyond climate, common interests extend to improving measurements of atmospheric pollution and dust, and setting up early warning systems for wildfires.
The MoU signing ceremony took place at The Cyprus Institute’s facilities in Athalassa, Nicosia. Signing the MoU on behalf of the Israeli Meteorological Service (IMS), was its General Director, Dr Nir Stav, and on behalf of The Cyprus Institute, its President, Prof. Costas N. Papanicolas.
Present at the meeting were also the Ambassador of Greece to Cyprus, H.E. Mr. Ioannis Papameletiou, the Ambassador of Israel to Cyprus, H.E. Mr. Oren Anolik, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Kornelios S. Korneliou, the Director of the Hellenic National Meteorological Service (HNMS), Major General (P) Dimitrios Sideridis, the HNMS Deputy Director, Mr. Emmanouil Anadranistakis, the Head of the Department of International and Public Relations of HNMS, Mrs. Konstantina Mita, the Director of Cyprus Department of the Meteorology (DoM), Dr Kleanthis Nicolaides, the Senior Meteorological Officer of DoM, Mr. Haris Zachariades, Meteorological Officers A of DoM, Mr. Michalis Mouskos, Mrs. Chrystalla Papachristodoulou, and Mr. Demetris Charalambous, and senior academic and administrative staff of the Institute.
In his address, the General Director of IMS stated that the Climate Change Crisis that we all tackle, it’s a global challenge. “We need to improve and work together to solve problems, such as droughts, forest fires, dust storms and extreme weather conditions. I am extremely happy for the signing of this MoU, and I appreciate the collaboration with The Cyprus Institute, a close collaborator of us. With this cooperation we will try to bring the research into an operational field”, he added.
Speaking at the ceremony, Prof. Papanicolas noted that it is an honour and pleasure for The Cyprus Institute to add this important milestone by signing this MoU, which brings a long standing collaboration in a new phase. “We aspire to continue towards better understanding of the meteorological and climatic conditions and the evolution of the Climate Crisis, so we can face and ameliorate its impacts”, he said.
On the same day, CyI hosted a roundtable discussion on the potential avenues for collaboration, chaired by Director of the CyI’s Cimate and Atmosphere Research Centre (CARE-C) Prof. Jean Sciare. Additionally, the delegation of HNMS, DoM and IMS were given a guided tour of CyI campus and Institute’s laboratories, including the High Performance Computing (HPC) Facility, Nanoparticle Synthesis and Characterisation Laboratory (INL), Unmanned Systems Research Laboratory (USRL), and Cyprus Atmospheric Observatory (CAO) Nicosia station.
Within the framework of the cooperation for better understanding the impacts of Climate Change, on Tuesday, 3rd of May, 2022, a trilateral MoU signing ceremony between the Israeli Meteorological Service (IMS, the Cyprus Department of Meteorology (DoM) and the Hellenic National Meteorological Service (HNMS) will take place at DoM’s premises.