Using Climate Information

Knowledge and information about climate change are crucial for climate action.

In order to be successful, adaptation strategies need to make use of the best available climate information, including assessments of recent climatic trends and projected future climate change that may be experienced in the years to come. 

The climate information needed by local level communities and national governments includes how climate variables such as temperature and rainfall, and the timing and severity of storms and climate extremes may change. In order to be both useful and used, this information needs to be timely, high quality, relevant and accessible. Meeting these needs is the focus of an emerging field called climate services, which aims to bridge the gap between climate science, policy and practice for adaptation decision-making and disaster resilience.

This theme, which connects to SEI's Climate Services Initiative, provides some basic climate science background, guidance for understanding and using climate data, insights for effectively communicating climate change, research and examples of how climate information can be integrated into decision-making across levels, and knowledge for the design, implementation and evaluation of effective climate services.

Contribute to the development of climate services: SEI would very much appreciate input from climate service users, intermediaries or providers on current issues and the future direction of climate services. Please share your views through the online survey here.

To contribute to this theme use the button below or QuickShare your content (Spanish version)

Join the Theme Using Climate Information

Joining will allow Theme-specific content to appear on your personal homepage

Add Resource

Do you have resources to add to this guide? Use the "Add Resource" form:

Add Resource

Climate Science

Climate science is a vast and complicated area of research. If you are not a climate scientist or meteorologist yourself but you need to engage them and/or the data and the information they produce, then it may be useful to familiarise yourself with some basics of the science of climate change. This category contains some basic climate science background, including frequently asked questions (FAQs) from the IPCC and climate projections and their interpretation.

Sorry, no results match your search


Accessing Managing and Using Climate Information

Climate information plays a central role in the planning and development of robust adaptation strategies at all levels, and in advising decision- or policy-makers on climate-sensitive matters. Here, you will find information on and examples of how to access, manage and use climate information, including an 8-step guidance on using the linked resources available in weADAPT and the Climate Information Portal (CIP) developed by the Climate Systems Analysis Group (CSAG), at the University of Cape Town, and information on how to use downscaled climate data and how to handle climate model uncertainty.

555476543eb7ask-rmavbild-2015-05-14-kl - climate adaptation.

Accessing and Using Climate Data and Information in Fragile, Data-Poor States

This report provides peacebuilding practitioners with guidance for accessing and using climate data and information in fragile contexts.

Read Article

Communicating Climate Change

Effective climate communication is essential for increasing the awareness and acknowledgement of climate risks and the uptake of climate services, from helping communities understand how climate change will impact their lives to getting buy-in for climate-relevant initiatives from decision- and policy-makers across scales. The content included here provides good practice insights for how to communicate various aspects of climate change, such as how to communicate climate uncertainty and novel ways in which to convey climate impacts (e.g. the IMPACT@C web-atlas).

Sorry, no results match your search


Climate Information in Decision-Making

Factoring climate information into decision-making across scales is central to reducing vulnerability in the short, medium and long-term. This is particuarly the case in development strategies and planning, where the failure to include climate information in decision-making can result in lock-in to maladaptative pathways. The content included here looks at the use of climate information in decision-making, including how it is being used in decision-making, and how it can be mainstreamed into development planning. For more on relevant methods, tools and approaches see the Adaptation Decision Making theme.

54d1323575f9e54c7bc5aa78c0screen-shot-2015-01-27-at-16 - climate adaptation.
Case Study

FCFA Pilot: Report from the Future Climate for Africa Pilot Country Case Study project; Mozambique

Introduction As a precursor to the Future Climate for Africa (FCFA) research activities, CDKN, on behalf of DFID commissioned a series of case study activities with the purposes of exploring the...
Read Case Study
54c7bc5aa78c0screen-shot-2015-01-27-at-16 - climate adaptation.
Case Study

FCFA Pilot: Report from the Future Climate for Africa Pilot Country Case Study project; Ghana

Introduction As a precursor to the Future Climate for Africa (FCFA) research activities, CDKN, on behalf of DFID commissioned a series of case study activities with the purposes of exploring the...
Read Case Study

Designing Delivering and Evaluating Effective Climate Services

Climate services involve the timely production, tailoring, translation and transfer of climate information, ensuring that the most relevant knowledge is effectively communicated, easily accessed and interpreted in order to develop policies and evaluate adaptation and mitigation strategies. The content provided here provides insights and guidance into how to deliver climate services that take into account user needs and that use highly participatory methods to co-produce and co-evaluate the service, ensuring that the information and process is truely tailored, and thereby of maximum benefit, to the user.

Sorry, no results match your search


Capacity Building for Climate Services

Strengthening user's confidence in climate services and their own ability to interpret and use them is key to achieving greater individual and collective engagement with climate services, the mainstreaming of climate information in decision-making and for obtaining buy-in to support the developmnent of climate services. The content included here provides insights into, and methods for capacity building for climate services across levels.

Sorry, no results match your search


Climate Services Initiatives

Climate services are varied in their structure and objectives. Here you will find different examples of climate services projects, alongside details including how and why they have been developed, the lessons that have been learnt during this process and the outcomes that have been achieved.

Sorry, no results match your search


Regional Climate Change Projections and Impact Analyses

Global warming is resulting in climate change that is not homogenous across the globe but that has a high degree of spatial variability, impacting different regions in very different ways. The climate change analyses included here show the geographical diversity of climate change projections, and what impacts might be expected in different regions. To see related work on vulnerability assessments, approaches and methods, including impacts on sectors, see the Vulnerability theme.

cd kenya lodwar rainfall anomaly - climate adaptation.
Case Study

Changing Rainfall Patterns In North Eastern Kenya

Downscaled climate projects indicate a slight increase in rainfall for Lodwar, but also notable increases in temperature Analysis of downscaled GCM data from a number of models for Lodwar station...
Read Case Study

Participating Organisations


360 - climate adaptation.

Tanya Wilkins

Communications Manager at UKCIP, at University of Oxford
maria jose gutierrez - climate adaptation.

María José Gutiérrez

Climate change and sustainability consultant
mirza 6 - climate adaptation.

Mirza Agić

Senior Environmental Statistics Advisor at BHAS
360 - climate adaptation.

Bill Leathes

Technical Lead - WISER Programme at Met Office
360 - climate adaptation.

Ruth Phillips Itty

Climate Change Consultant at Ricardo Energy and Environment
360 - climate adaptation.

Nkulumo Zinyengere

at SouthSouthNorth
foto nancy j - climate adaptation.

Nancy Jaspers

p5220108 - climate adaptation.

Andreas Kopf

Social Scientist, PhD at USP
360 - climate adaptation.

Laure Tankpinou

Engineer, specilized in environmental studies


Latest Discussions

img 1996 - climate adaptation.

Adaptation Integration in Local Government Policy Processes

“I am supporting implementation of UNDP-GEF/LDCF adaptation project in Malawi. The project supports the implementation...”

Read discussion
Julia Barrott

New paper explores potential applications of subseasonal-to-seasonal (S2S) predictions

“A new paper exploring the potential applications of subseasonal-to-seasonal (S2S) predictions has recently been...”

Read discussion
Julia Barrott

Calling all climate service users, intermediaries and providers!

“What do you think constitutes a climate service? Which services do you use and how do you think they could improve?...”

Read discussion
Ruth Butterfield

Climateurope Festival 2017: Climate Services opportunities

“Climate Service Center Germany (GERICS) , Hamburg would like to announce: Climateurope Festival 2017: explore...”

Read discussion
David Zetland

“Glad to see that the Lifeplus2m project is touching on many S's on the solution side, mostly via stories. Come visit to...”

Read comment on
Climate Psychology
Carole LeBlanc

1st Annual International Technical Workshop on Climate Risk Oct. 20-21 in Wells, ME USA

“The premise of this Workshop is that long before the Paris Agreement, scientists, engineers, business men and women,...”

Read discussion