Understanding climate
for the benefit of society


Using climate models, we develop predictions for the coming season as well as the coming century. Our scientists investigate the foundation for such predictions as well as how to best produce them.


Long-term projections


Producing long-term climate projections, means considering yet unknown emissions and societal development. That is why projections of the climate for decades or centuries ahead are done by running climate models under a range of emission scenarios.


This does not generate one answer, but a span in future temperatures or sea levels, depending on CO2 emissions as well as land-use changes.


Such predictions are called climate projections, as they portray a future depending on specific conditions.


Predictions for the coming year and decade


We also develop climate predictions on shorter time scales, such as the coming season, year or decade. 


These predictions can be seen as something in-between weather forecasts and long-term climate projections. Both increasing emissions and natural variations in e.g. ocean currents must be taken into account.


To develop skillful climate predictions, the Bjerknes Climate Prediction Unit (BCPU) aims to bridge the gap between weather forecasting and long-term climate change projections.


BCPU has developed the Norwegian Climate Prediction Model (NorCPM), which is based on the Norwegian Earth System Model (NorESM).


Climate Futures, a center formed with a basis in the Bjerknes Centre, develops long-term predictions from ten days to ten years ahead – aiming to handle climate risk in vulnerable sectors. The idea is to establish a long-term cooperation between businesses and industry, governmental organizations and research institutes.


These predictions are found at klimavarsling.no.


Noel Keenlyside

Noel Keenlyside, leader of the Bjerknes Climate Prediction Unit


Erik Kolstad




Erik Kolstad, leader of Climate Futures



The researchers at the Bjerknes Centre for Climate Research work with observations, theory and climate models.


The research is organised in four thematic groups:

Global climate – led by Nele Meckler
Polar climate – led by Kerim H. Nisancioglu
The Carbon system – led by Are Olsen
Climate hazards – led by Stephen Outten