Department of Meteorology, University of Reading
Laura Wilcox's home page

Laura Wilcox's home page

Photo I am an Associate Professor at the National Centre for Atmospheric Science (NCAS) in the University of Reading interested in the role of anthropogenic aerosol in regional climate change. At present, I am splitting my time between two projects, CATHY and TerraFIRMA.

As part of CATHY (Climate implications of rapid changes in Asian Anthropogenic Aerosol emissions: Temperature, Hydrological cycle and variabilitY) we are quantifying climate related hazards resulting from ongoing and projected changes in Asian aerosol emissions. The range of climate impacts and societal hazards may dominate regionally over greenhouse gas induced trends for the next several decades, but are not well understood. I am analysing global responses to local aerosol changes in climate models with a range of complexities to better understand the physical mechanisms involved.

In TerraFIRMA we are assessing a range of climate mitigation strategies and investigating the risks and consequences associated with overshooting key global warming targets, including the risk of rapid change in a range of regional climate phenomena and the potential reversibility of any triggered changes. My work focusses on the role of near-future changes in anthropogenic aerosol emissions, and the potential air quality co-benefits in climate mitigation strategies.

I am also the co-chair of RAMIP (Regional Aerosol Model Intercomparison Project). This is a set of experiments designed to quantify the role of anthropogenic aerosol in the spread in near-term climate projections. The experiments are based on the Shared Socioeconomic Pathways and designed to quantify the role of global and regional aerosol changes in near-term projections, and explore sensitivities to aerosol type and location. By performing these experiments with a number of models we can also explore sensitivities to the strength of aerosol forcing, and to differences in the representation of key climate processes.

Follow the links at the top of the page to find out more.

Previous projects

Climate Science for Service Partnership: China (CSSP China): Across a number of projects, we looked at the relationship between aerosols and regional climate dynamics, and the importance of the complexity of the representation of both natural and anthropogenic aerosols in models for their simulation of climate and climate change.

EMERGENCE: Working with Paul-Arthur Monerie and Andrew turner we quantified the effect of aerosol on climate hazards, with a particular focus on the monsoons.

ACSIS: I explored the role of aerosol in the North Atlantic climate system.

SMURPHS: Working with Andrea Dittus and Ed Hawkins to characterise the interactions between the climate response to anthropogenic aerosol emissions and natural variability, and explore the effects of uncertainty in aerosol forcing on the representation of historical climate.

EUCLEIA: I quantified the role of air-sea interactions in the attribution of extreme weather events in Europe, and quantified the relative roles of natural and anthropogenic contributions to the extreme summers of 2012 and 2015, and the extreme winter of 2009-2010.

PAGODA: I identified aerosol influences on the water cycle, and quantified the relative importance of sources of uncertainty in aerosol radiative forcing.

I have also worked with Andrew Charlton-Perez to quantify the importance of the role of the modelled stratosphere in simulations of climate and climate change.