The UK Climate Impacts Programme 2002 (UKCIP02) are a set of climate projections derived from a series of climate modelling experiments commissioned and funded by Department for Environment, Food and
Rural Affairs (DEFRA), performed by the Hadley Centre and analysed by the Tyndall Centre.
The UKCIP02 data are comprised of four scenarios of future climate change for the UK based on the understanding of the science of climate change in 2002. The climate change scenarios provide a common starting point for assessing climate change vulnerability, impacts and adaptation in the UK.
The UKCIP02 scenarios represent an advance in the description of future UK climates compared to the scenarios published for UKCIP in 1998. This is because they are based on new global emissions scenarios published in 2000 by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in their Special Report on Emissions Scenarios, and because they are based on a series of climate modelling experiments completed by the Hadley Centre using their most recently developed models. The scenarios describe four alternative future climates for the UK labelled, respectively, Low Emissions, Medium-Low Emissions, Medium-High Emissions and High Emissions. The scenarios are designed to be used in conjunction with other UKCIP reports and products.
No probabilities can be attached to these four climate futures – in line with the IPCC, UKCIP02 do not suggest that one is more likely than another. While they represent a wide range of possible future climates, the UKCIP02 scenarios do not capture the entire range of future possibilities.