The Applied Centre for Climate & Earth System Science
The Alliance for Collaboration on Climate and Earth Systems Science (ACCESS) is a CSIR-hosted platform for research, education, services and training related to a changing environment.
ACCESS is an instrument of the Global Change Programme of the National Research Foundation (NRF) which resides in the Global Change Grand Challenge on the Department of Science and Innovation (DSI). Work undertaken by ACCESS work comprises project-specific consortia made up of various research institutions and universities in South Africa and beyond for a range of topics related to earth systems science.
ACCESS’s work focuses on climatic change in the way that it is experienced by people and society. This is achieved by considering how climate change manifests at the space and time scales that matter – usually in the intensification of extreme events (which are themselves exaggerations of the seasonal climate cycle). So, the trends in the strength, frequency, duration of floods, droughts, winds, storms are important to understand if we are to predict the impacts of these changes on agriculture, transport, human health, etc. To do this ACCESS has developed and is involved in several projects. These include the Annual Climate Cycle and Seasonality programme, ACyS; Extreme events in the Benguela Upwelling System programme, EXEBUS; The Infectious Diseases Early Warning System project, iDEWS and the Application of knowledge for the management of extreme climate events (APECX) project.
ACCESS also hosts the Habitable Planet Workshop programme, a highly successful series of training events aimed at late undergraduate and early postgraduate students, with an emphasis on black and female students. The aim of this programme is to inspire students to pursue careers as earth systems researchers in South Africa.
ACCESS hosts a regular series of online webinars, ‘Conversations on climate change’ and also, through its Global Change Emerging Researcher Network, a journal club.
Dr Neville Sweijdnsweijd@access.ac.za