EMS Annual Meeting Abstracts
Vol. 18, EMS2021-488, 2021, updated on 11 Jan 2022
EMS Annual Meeting 2021
© Author(s) 2022. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

FAIR principles for climate services information systems

Nils Hempelmann1, Ingo Simonis1, Carsten Ehbrecht2, and David Huard3
Nils Hempelmann et al.
  • 1Open Geospatial Consortium Europe iVZW, Technologielaan 3, 3001 Leuven, Belgium
  • 2German Climate Computing Center (DKRZ), Deutsches Klimarechenzentrum GmbH, Bundesstraße 45a, D-20146 Hamburg, Germany
  • 3Ouranos, 550 Sherbrooke St W, West Tower, 19th floor, Montreal, Québec H3A 1B9, Canada

Ongoing climate change is increasingly impacting ecosystems and living conditions. To understand climate change effects on all scales ranging from regional to global and to develop appropriate response strategies, reliable, easily accessible climate location information is crucial. The United Nations framework of climate change policy emphasizes the role of open data as an essential component to enable efficient implementation of appropriate climate change strategies. Data offered at the various portals and climate services needs to be Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, and Reusable (FAIR). This is particularly important when several communities need to work together in order to develop the most effective response strategies. These communities not only involve climate scientists and meteorologists, but also climate impact analysts, hydrologists, agronomists, urban planners, ecologists, and many more. Screening the web for available data, it becomes apparent that there is no shortage of portal solutions built upon climate data archives. Portal solutions have turned out in the past of often being targeted towards a specific, and sometimes rather small, number of users from within a single community. Cross-community integration and thus enhanced reusability and interoperability was not in focus. Due to recent ongoing international domain crossing efforts, FAIR principles are increasingly respected also for the portal architectures of the information systems itself. For example, the Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) develops standards and best practices that enable FAIR principles across communities.

FAIR principles across communities require a set of essential ingredients to work effectively. These ingredients include metadata models that allow discovery (Findable), interfaces to access the data (Accessible), data models that are well documented (Interoperable) and can be efficiently consumed by others (Reusable). Because data volumes are continuously growing and therefore require new approaches for efficient data processing, OGC has extended the ‘Reusable’ component in FAIR. ‘Reusable’ now includes mechanisms for executing applications close to the physical location of the data. What was previously a data provisioning system now needs to be extended to support processing capacities up to the level where user-defined applications can be deployed and executed. In a sense, for data to be FAIR, it needs to be accompanied by equally FAIR services. 

This presentation is showing current realisations of leading climate services information systems that implement the extended FAIR principle. The presentation will sort out roles and capabilities of standardized web APIs that can be assembled in line with data and processing environments for interoperable climate data across communities in the most efficient way. Once paired with OGC’s new “Applications-to-the-Data” architecture and strong metadata models, the web APIs enable effective integration of climate data with data from other disciplines within state-of-the art cloud environments that feature not only reusability of data, but also of applications, data processes, and scientific workflows.

How to cite: Hempelmann, N., Simonis, I., Ehbrecht, C., and Huard, D.: FAIR principles for climate services information systems, EMS Annual Meeting 2021, online, 6–10 Sep 2021, EMS2021-488, https://doi.org/10.5194/ems2021-488, 2021.


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