The Fund

DECIMALS is the first of its kind. It is the world’s first international SRM research fund and the first for scientists from the Global South. From 2018 to 2020, DECIMALS will support eight pioneering projects, distributing more than $430,000 of grants to support the research of Southern scientists on the potential local impacts of SRM. It is hoped this will transform the international conversation around SRM geoengineering. It will put developing countries and emerging economies at the centre of efforts to understand its local risks and benefits, and will kick-start further conversations about the ethics, governance and politics of engineering the climate.

Background

The modelling fund is an idea that has been repeatedly raised and consistently supported at SRMGI’s workshops around the developing world. From Brazil to Bangladesh, participants have expressed a strong interest in finding out more about the potential local impacts of SRM, while noting the absence of funding for such research.

The design for DECIMALS was shaped by climate experts from across the Global South and some of the world’s leading SRM scientists. The fund is administered by The World Academy of Sciences (TWAS), which distributes more than $1M in research grants every year to support science across the developing world.

The DECIMALS launch in April 2018 was accompanied by a Comment in Nature. A group of eminent Southern scholars and NGO leaders – all organisers of SRMGI workshops in their respective countries – called for developing countries to play a leading role in SRM research and discussion.

The 2018 call for proposals

SRMGI received 77 DECIMALS applications from 30 different developing countries. Following independent scientific review, eight grants were awarded to teams from Argentina, Bangladesh, Benin, Indonesia, Iran, Ivory Coast, Jamaica, and South Africa. This group includes BRICS, SIDS and LDCs and represents most developing regions of the world. A total of 45 researchers from 13 developing countries will be contribute to the DECIMALS projects.

The modelling teams will work with data generated by large climate model runs, such as the Geoengineering Model Intercomparison Project (GeoMIP) or the NCAR Geoengineering Large Ensemble (GLENS). Grants of up to USD$70k will support scientists as they explore the climate impacts that matter most locally, from droughts to extreme temperatures to precipitation changes.

Beyond research

The DECIMALS Fund aims to go beyond research. Its wider goals include capacity-building, community-building, and expanding the conversation around SRM. DECIMALS research teams will receive financial support to attend conferences, to collaborate with each other and with SRM modelling experts, and to discuss the findings of their research with their local communities at the end of their projects.

Acknowledgement

Experts from around the world provided generous intellectual input to the design of the DECIMALS Fund. In particular, SRMGI would like to thank the participants of a planning workshop for DECIMALS, held in the margins of the SRMGI Global Forum in Berlin in October 2017:

  • Prof. Paulo Artaxo (University of São Paulo, Brazil)
  • Dr Peter Irvine (Harvard University, USA)
  • Prof. Asfawossen Kassaye (University of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia)
  • Prof. Ben Kravitz (University of Indiana, USA)
  • Prof. Felino Lansigan (University of the Philippines Los Baños)
  • Dr Douglas MacMartin (Cornell University, USA)
  • Prof. Saroj Kanta Mishra (Indian Institute of Technology Delhi, India)
  • Dr Christopher Oludhe (University of Nairobi, Kenya)
  • Prof. Alan Robock (Rutgers University, USA)
  • Dr Fahad Saeed (Climate Analytics, Germany)
  • Prof. Michael Taylor (University of the West Indies, Jamaica)
  • Dr Simone Tilmes (National Center for Atmospheric Research, USA).

Their support and advice were invaluable. Responsibility for the final design of the Fund – and any shortcomings – are the responsibility of SRMGI alone.