Climate change can be measured in several ways and impacts biodiversity in many different ways. To better understand these impacts, Shirin Taheri, Babak Naimi, and Miguel Araújo have developed “climetrics“, an R package that helps quantify and explore multiple dimensions of climate change. Published as a software note in Ecography, this tool offers an easy and unified way to look at climate data, making it a must-have for anyone studying climate change.

What is “climetrics”?

“climetrics” is an R package designed to make climate change data easy to analyse and understand. It brings together six important climate change metrics:

  1. Standardised Local Anomalies: Measures how much current conditions differ from historical averages.
  2. Changes in Probabilities of Local Climate Extremes: Looks at how the chances of extreme weather events are changing.
  3. Changes in Areas of Analogous Climates: Identifies shifts in areas that have similar climate conditions to the past.
  4. Novel Climates: Finds climates that are new and unprecedented.
  5. Changes in Distances to Analogous Climates: Measures how far one has to go to find a climate similar to the past.
  6. Climate Change Velocity: Calculates how fast climate zones are moving. This includes three methods:
  • Distance-based Velocity (“dVe”)
  • Threshold-based Velocity (“ve”)
  • Gradient-based Velocity (“gVe”)

More Features

Besides these six metrics, “climetrics” also offers:

Monthly Mean Calculation: Calculate average climate variables for each month over several years.
Temporal Trend Mapping: Map and understand the trends of climate variables over time.
Köppen-Geiger Climate Classification: Classify and map different climate zones based on a well-known system.

The package works smoothly with the “rts” package, making it easy to handle large sets of data.

User-Friendly and Flexible

“climetrics” is designed to be easy for everyone to use, from beginners to advanced users. It includes detailed guides and examples to help you get started and make the most of its features. If you’re experienced with R, you can customise and extend the package to fit your specific needs.

Why “climetrics” is Important

Understanding the various impacts of climate change is crucial for creating effective conservation strategies. “climetrics” provides a comprehensive tool for researchers to explore these impacts, helping us make better decisions to protect our ecosystems.

In summary, “climetrics” is a powerful, user-friendly tool for anyone interested in studying climate change.