Articles | Volume 8, issue 6
24 Nov 2008
 | 24 Nov 2008

Climate change impact of wind energy availability in the Eastern Mediterranean using the regional climate model PRECIS

A. Bloom, V. Kotroni, and K. Lagouvardos

Abstract. Global near-surface wind fields are projected to change as a result of climate change. An enhanced knowledge of the changes in wind energy availability in the twenty-first century is essential for improving the development of wind energy production. We use the PRECIS regional model over the East Mediterranean to dynamically downscale the results of the Had3CM Atmosphere-Ocean coupled Global Circulation Model. Wind field changes during the 21st century are determined by comparing the current climate simulation (1961–1990) with the IPCC A2 emissions scenario simulation (2071–2100). The consistency of the current climate simulation of wind speeds is assessed by comparing its results to the ERA40 re-analysis data. The comparison of the wind field from ERA40 re-analysis to that from the PRECIS current climate simulation shows relatively large mean differences that could partly be attributed to the difference in the spatial resolution of the two sources of data. Wind speeds in 2071–2100 exhibit a general increase over land and a decrease over the sea, with the exception of a noticeable increase over the Aegean Sea.