date: Mon, 13 Dec 1999 22:52:11 +0000
from: Tony Mcmichael <Tony.McmichaelatXYZxyztm.ac.uk>
to: penny_bramwell <penny_bramwellatXYZxyzr.gsi.gov.uk>
As you know I am in Australia for a month, having come out for an international climate conference in Sydney (on behalf of WMO/WHO) in mid-Nov, and having then stayed on, on mini-study leave, to attend last week's plenary Lead Authors IPCC/TAR WGII meeting in Canberra.
I understand from Sari Kovats that you have expressed dissatisfaction with the progress on our DETR health-impacts contract research. We need to talk about this, of course. However, you should know that the amount of work to achieve what we have already done, and done under considerable time-pressure, has been very considerable.
>From conversations with Geoff Jenkins, he has sometimes appeared to think that it is largely a matter of connecting up UKMO output to preexisting impacts models and thereby getting an answer. That is mistaken. It has been an enormous task to re-jig the Martens MIASMA model with species-specific data for dominant regional mosquitoes (for malaria transmission). It has also been a new and demanding exercise to then link the geographic range projections with human population projections, in order to estimate additional numbers "at risk". Finally, this model has not been previously used to produce the sort of seasonality-change predictions that we were able to produce.
The recent, detailed, paper in GEC is now the definitive reference on this topic. For that, thanks to DETR's initiative on this matter.
Modelling the several health impacts has been an intensive, collaborative, effort between the three partners (LSHTM, Maastricht, UEA). We are already well over budget in terms of time spent. If you think back to the urgent circumstances under which you tendered for this health-impacts part of the Fast Track initiative, you will perhaps understand why it was difficult o foresee exactly what could be achieved within the allotted time and money.
Finally, in case you think I am sitting on the beach out here, let me assure you that, as a UK-sponsored CLA, I not only spent the whole of last week chairing my panel and working on the chapter text in evenings, but I must now spend the best part of this week doing revisions, and preparing two separate summaries of the chapter. Further, the amount of pre-reading that CLAs must now do, to deal with the various cross-cutting issues in the WGII Report has ballooned alarmingly. Governments and policy-makers are getting bargain-price inputs from the LAs and, particularly, from the CLAs - especially since I did not cost you an international fare for this meeting!
I trust that you realise this is a two-way street. Merry Xmas.