Our Mission

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The FOCI project aims to provide policy recommendations by bridging knowledge gaps on the impact of non-CO₂ climate forcing pollutants (also known as short-lived climate pollutants) such as black carbon (soot), methane (CH4), tropospheric ozone (O3), and hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs). While the causes and processes connected to greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide (CO₂) are well known, including its ability to trap and heat the earth’s atmosphere, and its environmental and health impacts, there is less information on the effects of many of these non-CO₂ forcers. FOCI will assess the environmental and health impacts of these non-CO₂ forcers, including how and where they arise. 

To do this, researchers will use complex computer models to simulate interactions between various components of the earth’s systems. Such components, which includes the earth’s atmosphere, will be studied to understand and predict the impact of non-CO₂ forces on the earth’s climate system using the global Earth System Models (ESMs) and Regional Climate Models (RCMs). Findings from the research will inform the development  and adaptation of climate-related policies.


The project is divided into nine distinct work packages. Each work package fulfills one or more of FOCI’s objectives:

  • Examine and evaluate the climate relevant processes and feedbacks of anthropogenic primary and secondary radiative forcing species based on observational datasets – WP1

  • Examine and evaluate the climate relevant processes and feedbacks of natural aerosols and biogenic volatile organic compounds (BVOCs), as precursors for secondary organic aerosols (SOA) based on observational datasets – WP2

  • Integrate observational datasets with models and data products to improve and evaluate multi-scale climate and atmospheric composition models – a FOCI cross-cutting activity

  • Improve and evaluate state-of-the-art global Earth System Models (ESMs) – WP3 – and regional climate and atmospheric composition models (RCMs) – WP4 – targeting specific critical processes with the largest uncertainties – WP6 – for better climate projections

  • Improve tailored emission inventories for non-CO₂ radiative forcers and scenarios for detailed, high-resolution, multi-scale climate and associated impact projections for specific regions (e.g. Europe, South Asia, Africa and Arctic), using innovative coupled modelling frameworks – WP5 and WP7

  • Undertake innovative and regionally relevant integrated analyses of optimized mitigation strategies to assess multiple benefits, support climate policy, quantify the sensitivity of climate system tipping points to non-CO2 forcers, and meet the global challenges to stabilize global temperatures and minimize the associated impacts on climate, weather, air quality and health – WP6 and WP7

  • Implement a global outreach, dissemination and stakeholder engagement strategy to provide updated scientific evidence on the impacts of key non-CO2 radiative forcers and support national and international policy and operational services – WP8

  • Guarantee the efficient implementation of the project and delivery of its outcomes through a robust coordination and management plan incorporating administrative, financial, operational and monitoring infrastructure and mechanisms with independent scientific oversight – WP9