From the Program Manager, Nov ’23: E3SM Wins Gordon Bell Prize for Climate Modeling

  • November 29, 2023
  • Feature Story,Home Page Feature

    Xujing Davis, ESMD Program Manager, DOE BER

    Xujing Davis, E3SM Program Manager, DOE BER

    Welcome to the Winter issue of E3SM newsletter. As we approach the end of 2023 and the holiday season, I hope you continue to find a healthy balance between a crazy end-of-year workload and quality time for yourself and with family and friends.



    E3SM wins the Inaugural Gordon Bell Prize for Climate Modeling

    On November 16th, at the Supercomputing Conference (SC23), it was announced that E3SM wins the inaugural Gordon Bell Prize for Climate Modeling. It is an incredible honor for E3SM to receive such a prestigious prize among our well-accomplished national and international peers. Being in science is a commitment, being in earth system model development like E3SM is even another level of deeper commitment. It takes a large team with a wide range of expertise with sustained, concerted and dedicated effort over many years to achieve major advances like this toward solving the global climate crisis. I thank Gordon Bell for his vision in establishing the Gordon Bell – Climate Modeling Prize, an inspiration to scientists not only at DOE but across the climate modeling science community worldwide.

    I congratulate Dave Bader, E3SM project PI, Mark Taylor, E3SM Chief Computational Scientist, the lead author, and the full author team (and their institutions) for the Gordon Bell submission (Mark Taylor, Peter M. Caldwell, Luca Bertagna, Conrad Clevenger, Aaron S. Donahue, James G. Foucar, Oksana Guba, Benjamin R. Hillman, Noel Keen, Jayesh Krishna, Matthew R. Norman, Sarat Sreepathi, Christopher R. Terai, James B. White III, Danqing Wu, Andrew G. Salinger, Renata B. McCoy, L. Ruby Leung, and David C. Bader) as well as the Full E3SM Team! I also thank and congratulate all who have been involved with and contributed to E3SM over the years, and most importantly, the strong support from DOE Office of Science Biological and Environmental Research Program (BER), Earth and Environmental Systems Sciences Division (EESSD), Advanced Scientific Computing Research Program (ASCR), the BER-ASCR Scientific Discovery through Advanced Computing (SciDAC) Partnership and Exascale Computing Project (ECP)!

    The work that earned E3SM the Gordon Bell Prize establishes a historical milestone of the E3SM project and beyond. It will serve as an important reference for next-generation earth system modeling efforts, with profound scientific and societal impacts for many years to come. 

    E3SM Contribution to NCA5

    Newly released NCA5 found that Americans are experiencing increased risks from extreme weather events and the United States is taking concrete action to combat climate change. DOE researchers were among the nearly 500 authors who contributed to the report including multiple E3SM members (Ruby Leung, Peter Thornton, Claudia Tebaldi, Paul Ullrich). I am also proud to be part of this enormous national climate assessment effort, along with other DOE EESM colleagues Renu Joseph and Bob Vallario. E3SM will continue to address the many societal great challenges related to global climate risks by improving earth system predictability for actionable science. Please check out the newly released E3SM Public Video to learn more.

    E3SM members selected as 2023 AGU Fellows

    Two E3SM members are among the 2023 AGU honorees for their scientific accomplishments and impacts. Congratulations to Claudia Tebaldi and Xiaohong Liu!


    E3SM Resources: New Data and Upcoming Tutorial Workshop

    Three major categories of data have been published: E3SMv2 North America Regionally Refined Model (NARRM) simulation data, E3SMv1.0 high resolution campaign data, and the Large Ensembles (LENS) simulation data produced in collaboration with RGMA ecosystem projects. We expect these exciting new data sets to be widely used and explored by DOE ecosystem projects and lead to new scientific findings.   

    In response to the growing interest and need for the use of E3SM, a first-ever in-person, hands-on Tutorial Workshop is being designed for new users engaged in currently funded BER’s EESSD projects using E3SM. It is scheduled to take place from May 7-10 at the National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC). Please keep an eye on the future announcement for workshop applications in Early December.


    E3SM Relevant Meetings, New Awards, and a Lab Visit


    It has been a busy and productive few months. Following the June E3SM All Hands meeting, E3SM Leadership team met in Bethesda in November, to discuss the current status of the project and future plans. This was one of many planned strategizing brainstorming sessions toward the development of a new decadal strategic plan and roadmap. E3SM welcomes input and contributions from all members of the E3SM team and its ecosystem projects. Please contact your project PI, E3SM POCs, or E3SM team leads. Thanks in advance.

    The first in-person SciDAC5 PI meeting was held in September, with 7 projects focusing on E3SM development with a total budget of 70 million over 5 years. Please read the comprehensive Summary Report led by Matt Hoffman and Hui Wan for the major outcome and future opportunities for BER/ASCR collaboration. You can also find all the presentations and posters within.

    Shortly after SciDAC PI meeting, an E3SM presentation was invited by the ASCR Advisory Committee (ASCAC) for its annual fall meeting. I appreciated the opportunity to provide ASCAC with the E3SM project update and also to thank ASCR for their essential contribution and support of E3SM. Luca Bertagna presented in detail E3SM results from the Gordon Bell submission. Going forward, ASCR’s world-leading computational capabilities will continue to play a critical role in future E3SM’s computational advances.

    The 1st EAGLES PI Meeting was held at PNNL in a hybrid format also in September, with presentations from E3SM representatives, interagency colleagues and following discussion on how to improve E3SM’s future representations of aerosol, cloud, and their interactions as well as specific steps needed to be taken.

    Other recent EESSD meetings include the ARM/ASR PI meeting and the NGEE Tropics Annual Meeting, during both, I was invited to provide an E3SM overview and its connection/synergies with ARM/ASR and NGEE Tropics activities. As E3SM progresses toward simulating finer resolution processes, the coordination/integration with other EESSD program activities becomes ever more important. I encourage E3SM members to enhance communication with other relevant EESSD projects and identify collaboration opportunities to pursue if/when appropriate.

    In addition, two coastal-urban theme meetings, the Urban IFL PI meeting, and USGCRP’s Integrated Hydro-Terrestrial Modeling (IHTM) 2.0 Workshop were held during September and November respectively, with participation and presentations of DOE’s research activities utilizing/developing E3SM capabilities.

    New Awards

    On a coastal-urban related note, please join me in congratulating and welcoming six EESM Early Career Awardees whose research projects center on the use or development of the E3SM with a coastal-urban focus.

    As all three EESM coastal projects (ICoM, InteRFACE and COMPASS-GLM) are preparing for their research plan for the next phase, this is a great time to communicate, leverage and coordinate among all coastal projects to achieve more together.

    PNNL Visit

    In mid September, I spent two productive days at PNNL, along with colleague Renu Joseph. I very much enjoyed the overview presentations of E3SM and its EESSD ecosystem projects, the ongoing effort at PNNL with internal lab investment to support BER research, and the opportunity to visit the world-class facilities (ESML, ARM, and the Electricity Infrastructure Operations Center). Most important of all, I enjoyed meeting the amazing team including a large group of early career scientists! I want to thank PNNL for organizing such a well-coordinated and engaging event, and for their dedication and contribution to E3SM development and advancing BER science.


    Highlights and a Report

    The research highlights include: advanced understanding of 1) the role of longwave cloud scattering in simulating future global climate and 2) how cleaner snow would offset climate change effects; two SciDAC studies: 3) one suggesting that Earth System Models (ESMs) should use ERA5 or MERRA-2 to validate ice sheet model dynamics and preconditions firn for Sea level rise projections, 4) another demonstrating that a color map for 2D vector fields provides new metrics to analyze ice motion and localized sea ice fractures; 5) an investigation to examine terrestrial biogeochemical cycles in E3SM in tackling uncertainties for future net land–atmosphere carbon exchange simulations; and 6) a multi-model analysis finding no robust differences in several climate extreme metrics between scenarios that only differ in their land-use patterns.

    CICE Consortium, led by E3SM team lead Elizabeth Hunke and jointly sponsored by multiple agencies in the US and abroad, is highlighted in a new book by Dr. Jeanne M. Fair entitled “Scientific Collaboration: Strategies for Successful Research Teams”. The CICE Consortium is presented as an example of the many layers of community that can contribute to and benefit from a team-based project, as part of the climate modeling community and the larger climate science community.

    High-performance networks like the Energy Sciences Network (ESnet) play a crucial role in supporting data-intensive scientific research in E3SM. In the recently published ESnet Report, E3SM was one of the case studies presenting the current state of its scientific process and technology integration.


    Around DOE

    Big news at DOE is the return of Dorothy Koch, as the Associate Director of BER. The E3SM team including myself is excited to welcome her back at DOE. We thank her for establishing and managing E3SM in its early stages and wish her much success in her new role!

    To broaden the participation in and facilitate science community engagement with EESSD research, a series of Open House events were held including the EESM Open House in October. Please check out the recordings if you are interested in opportunities from EESM, particularly if you are new to the program.


    Upcoming Events

    EESM PI meeting is tentatively scheduled to be during the week of August 5th, 2024. More information will be provided when available.

    We are less than two weeks away from the annual AGU Fall Meeting. Please remember to include your E3SM-relevant AGU presentations on the Confluence page as well as the EESM site.  If you plan to attend the AMS annual conference, please also submit your information to the E3SM Confluence page. The collected info will draw us and others to your AGU sessions, help us plan out our meeting schedules, and also better document E3SM scientific outcomes. Please stop by the E3SM Town Hall titled “E3SM: A Decade of Earth System Modeling Effort at the Department of Energy“ on Tuesday evening. I look forward to meeting many of you in San Francisco!


    Closing Remarks

    I want to acknowledge that, during the past few months, the E3SM team particularly the Coupled Group has been fully geared up and worked intensely beyond normal hours for testing and finalizing E3SM version 3 for its release, thank you!

    To conclude, I want to thank you all very much for another year of great work, and wish you and your family a happy and healthy Holiday Season!



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