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Climate change

The effects of climate change is already being felt across our landscape. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Fifth Assessment Report clearly shows that warming of the climate system is unequivocal, and that human influence on the climate system is clear.

Adapting to climate change

South Australia is responding to the challenges of climate change. The State Government released its Climate Change Adaptation Framework, Prospering in a Changing Climate in 2012, and is working collaboratively with regional communities to deliver climate change adaptation plans in each of the 12 state government regions by the end of 2016.  The SA Climate Ready project will assist regions undertake adaptation planning by providing regionally specific climate data.

SA Climate Ready 

The Goyder Institute for Water Research is a partnership between the South Australian Government through the Department for Environment and Water, CSIRO, Flinders University, University of Adelaide, and the University of South Australia.

In 2011, the Goyder Institute commenced a project to develop downscaled climate change projections for South Australia, that is, possible future climates generated at a local scale. There are over 40 global climate models (GCM) used by the IPCC for generating climate projections1.  The Goyder Institute identified a subset of these GCMs based on their ability to reproduce the State’s climate drivers such as the Indian Ocean Dipole and the El Niño Southern Oscillation. This sub-set of GCMs were then used to generate climate projections at a local scale – providing the best available science to ensure that SA is Climate Ready.  ​

SA Climate Ready is the most comprehensive set of downscaled climate projections data available in South Australia. Data is available for six climate variables (rainfall, temperature maximum, temperature minimum, areal potential evapotranspiration, solar radiation and vapour pressure deficit), using two emission scenarios (intermediate and high “representative concentration pathways”) through to 2100.

SA Climate Ready provides a common basis on which Government, business and the community in South Australia can develop solutions to climate change adaptation challenges.

Regional trends or detailed data?

SA Climate Ready provides natural resource management scale climate trend information and detailed data at the scale of weather stations. 

Regional scale trend information can be accessed in the natural resources management (NRM) regional summary brochures and a comprehensive regional report from the Goyder Institute website. This information is useful for NRM organisations, Local Government or Regional Development Authorities involved with region scale adaptation planning.

Detailed data is available through the mapping tool on this website. Detailed data sets will be important for various applications, such as:
•    climate change impact modelling studies, commonly in water resources, but also in agriculture and infrastructure planning;
•    understanding the future climate that infrastructure may be exposed to at a given locality;
•    generating site-specific heatwave and bushfire risk factors; and
•    quantitative risk assessment for many sectors.

Users interested in downloading the data should familiarise themselves with the User Guide available from this web page. This explains the modelling approach used to generate the climate projections data, potential applications of the data and issues to consider when applying the data.

Further information

Examples of how the SA Climate Ready data has been used during the project phase are available in a series of case studies available on the Goyder Institute website.

Reponses to Frequently Asked Questions are available on this website.

For support in using the data available for download, visit the Contact Us page.

1A full list of GCMs is provided at​