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Improving predictions and management of hydrological extremes through climate services

The EU Roadmap on climate services can be seen as a result of a convergence between the society’s call for 'actionable research', and the ability of the climate research community to provide tailored data, information and knowledge. However, although weather and climate have clearly distinct definitions, a strong link between weather and climate services exists that is not explored extensively. Stakeholders being interviewed in the context of the Roadmap consider climate as a far distant long term feature that is difficult to incorporate in present-day decision taking, which is dominated by daily experience with handling extreme events. In this paper we argue that this experience is a rich source of inspiration to increase society’s resilience to an unknown future. A newly started European research project, IMPREX, is built on the notion that 'experience in managing current day weather extremes is the best learning school to anticipate consequences of future climate'. This paper illustrates possible ways to increase the link between information and services for the water sector, by addressing weather and climate time scales and discussing the underlying concepts of IMPREX and its expected outcome.

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