Poster Australian Marine Sciences Association 2022

Projecting the future hydrodynamic environment of the Great Barrier Reef: a dynamic climate-ocean downscaling (#485)

Jodie Schlaefer 1 , Clothilde Langlais 1 , Mark Baird 1 , Mathieu Mongin 1
  1. CSIRO, Oceans & Atmosphere, Coastal Environmental Modelling Team, Hobart, Tasmania, Australia

The adverse effects of climate change on coral reefs are predicted to intensify over coming decades, necessitating that management decisions be made over decadal time scales. In the context of the management of the Great Barrier Reef (GBR), the Australian and Queensland Governments have developed the “2050 Long-term Sustainability Plan”, with the eReefs program contributing environmental information to an integrated decision support and communication tool. eReefs encompasses a suite of models, whereby hydrodynamic models of different resolutions inform sediment and biogeochemical modules. However, eReefs runs in hindcast and near-real time and therefore, currently does not provide predictions of the future environmental conditions in the GBR. The high-resolution future climate experiment released with CMIP6 offers an opportunity to perform a dynamic climate to ocean downscaling of the GBR system using the eReefs model grid. Specifically, we will derive new forcings for the 4km eReefs hydrodynamic model (GBR4) based on the future conditions simulated by an ensemble of high-resolution Earth System Models from CMIP6. Thereby, we will simulate how the physical environmental conditions in the GBR will develop into 2050, producing an outlook that will aligning with the decadal time scales of management for the GBR.