Select Committee on Science and Technology Minutes of Evidence

Supplementary memorandum submitted by Mr David Warrilow, Head of Science Policy, Global Atmosphere Division, Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions following the evidence session of 20 December 2000

  We undertook to advise the Committee on the disciplines of scientists working at the Hadley Centre and those that they worked with. The Committee also asked us to give an indication of our plans for the future.[2]

  Of the 78 graduates at the Hadley Centre, the majority have degrees in maths and physics with a few in environmental science, geography and other related disciplines. One member of staff has an MSc in Ocean Biology and Physics. This is largely to be expected as the predominant work of the Hadley Centre is and has been physical process modelling. Modelling efforts are very largely a mathematical activity. However, over the years the biological processes in the model have been developed in collaboration with the leading six biologists and ecologists at other institutes.

  A number of the staff at these institutes are actually funded by DETR through the Hadley Centre and they contribute to the development of biological processes both in the ocean and on the land surface. This has been an effective way of developing biological processes in the model and has so far worked very successfully. The Hadley Centre has been at the forefront of Climate modelling work on the interaction of biological processes on the climate system, including one paper published very recently on carbon cycle feedback in the peer reviewed journal Nature.

  Our plans for the next two years retain this approach. We will be developing the biological processes further and will continue to work in partnership with experts in other organisations. If a clear need for intramural staff with expertise in the biological sciences arises then we will of course address that.

26 January 2001

2   Q133. Back

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