Source: Science Daily

August 2015

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8/15/2015: LEAP 2015 Released with Sankey Diagrams.

A major update to LEAP is now available including:

  • New interactive Sankey Diagrams: that give an overview of energy flows through an area from resources through transformation to demands.

  • Improved Results View that makes it easier to select results (and harder to not select results), and including a new "AutoRefresh" switch making it easier to work with larger areas.

  • Faster Calculations: calculation time reduced by about 15% for large data sets.

  • Improved operation with CPLEX solver: faster and less memory use.

  • Analysis view re-sizes to better fit data and maximize size of chart.

  • Many other minor improvements and bug fixes.

  • Updated for Windows 10

Full list of changes here or download here.

LEAP's New Sankey Diagram


8/5/2015: WEAP 2015 Released

SEI has also recently released a major update to WEAP: LEAP's sister software for integrated water resource planning. Highlights of the new version include:

  • Indictors of Hydrologic Alteration (IHA): Integration of The Nature Conservancy's Indictors of Hydrologic Alteration, to aid in understanding the ecological impacts of changes in streamflow.

  • Plant Growth Method (PGM): A new method for catchment hydrology, the Plant Growth Method simulates daily plant growth, water use, and crop yields as a function of CO2 concentration, season length variability, and temperature and water stress, based on the approach taken in the SWAT and EPIC models.

  • Glaciers: A new option for modeling shrinkage or growth of glaciers.

  • River Flooding: Models river flooding as the fraction of streamflow over a threshold value that causes flooding in a catchment area.

  • Linking Areas: Linking flows from one WEAP area to another.

  • Faster: Calculations are much faster (100x in some cases) and more robust.

  • Updated for Windows 10.

Full list of changes here or download here.


weAdapt  

SEI is proud to announce a new version of the climate adaptation knowledge platform weADAPT, with new exciting functionality.

weADAPT is a collaborative web-based platform where practitioners, researchers and decision-makers share knowledge on adaptation research and practice. The platform includes guidelines for interpreting and analyzing climate information, methods for assessing social and climate vulnerability, and a range of tools to support adaptation decision-making.

weADAPT has links to over 2000 global projects, articles and case studies, and now has more than 2500 members and 600 organizations registered from 190 countries. The new "mobile friendly" version includes new discussion forums where users can interact and discuss adaptation topics.

Visit weADAPT here


Facebook LEAP on Facebook

We've started a new Facebook group for LEAP users and COMMEND members. It's a place to share pictures and stories of how you are using LEAP. Please join us!

facebook.com/groups/LEAPSoftware


LEAP used to support countries tackling short-lived climate pollutants


Climate change is driven primarily by the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, and sharply reducing CO2 emissions is the top priority in the effort to avoid dangerous long-term impacts. But pollutants that don't remain in the atmosphere for long, such as methane, hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), and black carbon (soot), play an important role in the short term, with particularly large impacts in urban areas and sensitive regions such as the Arctic. They also affect human health, crop yields and ecosystems.

In February 2012, aiming to catalyze rapid action on these pollutants, the governments of Bangladesh, Canada, Ghana, Mexico, Sweden and the U.S. and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) launched the Climate and Clean Air Coalition to Reduce Short Lived Climate Pollutants (CCAC).

Since then, the coalition has grown to 66 partners: 33 countries and 33 intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations. SEI, which coordinated two major scientific reports on short-lived climate pollutants (SLCPs) that have guided much of the coalition's work, has been involved from the start, and has made it an institutional priority to support CCAC. SEI Policy Director Johan C.I. Kuylenstierna, an expert in air pollution issues, sits on the coalition's Science Advisory Panel, and he also leads an initiative to help countries develop SLCPs National Action Plans, and is coordinating a new regional assessment of SLCPs in Latin America and the Caribbean.

As part of the planning initiative, SEI has developed a tool, based on LEAP, to assess the potential for mitigating SLCP emissions in each country. The new LEAP-SLCP tool is part of a CCAC National Action Plans "toolkit" that also includes a Rapid Benefits Calculator developed by SEI's York Centre and the BenMAP-CE tool developed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, which focuses on the health benefits of reducing air pollution.

The toolkit got its first trial runs in the pilot phase of the national planning initiative, which began in January with four countries: Bangladesh, Colombia, Ghana and Mexico. Initial results were presented at a CCAC meeting in Mexico City on July 22-26, where the coalition also approved $1.9 million USD in new funding to support additional countries' national planning efforts. CCAC members also approved more than $3 million in new funding for initiatives to address SLCP emissions from household cooking and heating, brick kilns and landfills.

  • For an overview of the science of SLCPs and the benefits of addressing them, watch a video with SEI's Kevin Hicks.

  • To learn more about CCAC, visit www.unep.org/ccac; a summary of the meeting is available here.

  • To learn more about the LEAP-SLCP tool, contact the LEAP developer Charlie Heaps directly.