Department of Geography
Tel: +353 1 708 4562
1.2 Laraghbryan House
Rowan graduated from the National University of Ireland, Maynooth (NUIM), with an honours degree in Geography and Anthropology, and went on to carry out his PhD research in Maynooth. This research involved identifying key air mass types that impacted on glacier mass balance in Scandinavia and provided a mechanism to explain why maritime and continental glaciers responded differently to climate. This research also involved the development of high-resolution climate scenarios for selected locations in Norway. The climate scenarios were developed employing statistical downscaling techniques and provided the input to drive a glacier model to assess how different glaciers may respond to future changes in climate. Since completing his PhD research, he has largely been involved in the development of climate scenarios for Ireland and other locations worldwide employing mainly statistical downscaling techniques. More recently he has been involved in developing dynamically based climate scenarios employing regional climate models. His research focus centers on analyzing historical trends in climate, employing statistical and dynamical downscaling techniques to assess uncertainty and more recently, he is integrating observations and analysis of urban fluxes into his research interests.
When he’s not in the office he can generally be found sitting on a surfboard on a break in Castlegregory or diving somewhere off the Kerry coast.
Teaching Academic Year 2011-2012
- GY215 Climate and Glaciers
- GY310 Geography Research Workshop
- GY311 Key Skills in Physical Geography
- GY652 Applied Climate Sciences
Research interests fall under two categories (a) research I am currently undertaking and (b) research I would like to continue further/develop into the future:
- Historical Climate Analysis, Regional climate modelling (statistical/dynamical), uncertainty analysis to provide ‘useful’ information for integrated climate impacts assessments, measurement/analysis of urban CO2 fluxes
Circulation linkages to glacier mass balance/glacier modelling
Fulbright Scholar award in Science and Technology 2012-2013
Funded Research Grants
- Next Generation, High Resolution, DEcadal and Long-Term Climate Simulations for IrelAnd leading to improved Policy Formulation (DELTA) (with Dr. F. Mulligan, Dr. P.A. Mooney, NUIM, and Ray McGrath, Met Eireann) €275,000
Funding Agency: Environmental Protection Agency
- INSPIRE-IRCSET/Marie Curie International Mobility Fellowship in Science, Engineering and Technology" Applicant: Dr. Priscilla A. Mooney (2010-2012). Mentors: Dr. Rowan Fealy, NUIM & Prof. David Marshall, Oxford University
- The Impact of climate change adaptation and policy instruments on local, regional and national greenhouse gas emissions: A spatially disaggregated assessment (In collaboration with Teagasc Kinsealy and Athenry) €63,000
Funding Agency: Teagasc Walsh Fellowship (Ph.D.)
- Co-ordination, Communication and Adaptation for Climate Change in Ireland: an Integrated Approach (with J. Sweeney) €941,000
Funding Source: Environmental Protection Agency
- Climate and Catchment Environment (PI) (with C. Murphy in collaboration with the Centre for the Environment, TCD) €265,000
Funding Source: Marine Institute/SSTI.
- Willow Selection for Resistance to Herbivore Damage using Predictive Climate Change and Geographic Information System Modelling (In collaboration with Teagasc, Kinsealy and Oakpark €365,432) €130,000
Funding Source: Department of Agriculture and Food- Research Stimulus Fund Programme (RSFP).
- High Performance Computing Cluster (with James McInerney, NUIM) €211,000
Funding Source: Higher Education Authority/Infrastructure
- Environment and Climate Change: Impacts and Responses (with NUIG, TCD, UL, UCC, CIT, Met Eireann €11.5M) €298,750
Funding Source: Higher Education Authority/PRTLI Cycle 4
- Modelling the Effects of Climate Change on the Incidence of Pests and Diseases: A Spatial Analysis of the Potential Impacts on Irish Agricultural Productivity (In collaboration with Teagasc Kinsealy) €63,000
Funding Agency: Teagasc Walsh Fellowship (Ph.D.)
- Broderick, C. and Fealy, R. An analysis of the synoptic-climatological applicability of circulation type classifications for the Irish domain, submitted.
- Osman, Y.Z., Fealy, R. and Sweeney, J. Downscaling extreme precipitation in Ireland using combined peak-over threshold (POT) generalised Pareto distribution (GPD) model of varying parameters, Journal of Water and Climate Change, accepted
- Osman, Y.Z., Fealy, R. and Sweeney, J. Modelling extreme temperatures in Ireland under global warming using a hybrid peak-over threshold & generalised Pareto distribution approach, International Journal of Global Warming, in press
- Fealy, R., Allott, N., Broderick, C., de Eyto, E., Dillane, M., Erdil, R.M., Hancox, L., Jennings, E., McCrann, K., Murphy, C., O'Toole, C., Poole, R., Rogan, G., Ryder, E., Taylor, D., Whelan, K. and White, J. RESCALE: Review and Simulate Climate and Catchment Responses at Burrishoole, Technical Report, Marine Research Sub Programme 2007-2013, Marine Institute, Oranmore, Co. Galway, pp1-456, in press.
- Fealy, R. (2013) An Application of Pattern Scaling to Statistically Downscaled Data to Derive Probabilistic Based Climate Scenarios for Ireland, Progress in Physical Geography, 37(2), 178-205.
- Foley, A., Fealy, R. and Sweeney, J. (2013) Model skill measures in probabilistic regional climate projections for Ireland, Climate Research, 46:33-49.
- Mooney, P.A., Mulligan, F.J. and Fealy, R. (2013) Evaluation of the sensitivity of the Weather Research and Forecasting model to parameterization schemes for regional climates of Europe over the period 1990-1995, Journal of Climate, 26:3, 1002-1017.
- Mullan, D.J., Favis-Mortlock, D.T. and Fealy, R. (2012) Modelling the impacts of climate change on future rates of soil erosion: addressing key limitations, Agricultural and Forest Meteorology, 156, 18-30.
- Keogh, S., Mills, G. and Fealy, R. (2012) The energy busget of the urban surface: Two locations in Dublin, Irish Geography, DOI:10.1080/00750778.2012.689182
- Bastola, S., Murphy, C. and Fealy, R. (2012) Generating probabilistic estimates of hydrological response using a weather generator and probabilistic climate change scenarios, Hydrological Processes, 26:2307-2321. DOI: 10.1002/hyp.8349.
- Mullan, D., Fealy, R. Favis-Mortlock, D. (2011) Developing site-specific future temperature scenarios for Northern Ireland: a statistical downscaling approach, International Journal of Climatology, doi: 10.1002/joc.2414.
- Mooney, P., Mulligan, F. and Fealy, R. (2011) Comparison of ERA 40, ERA-Interim and NCEP/NCAR reanalysis data with observed surface air temperatures over Ireland, International Journal of Climatology, 31, 545-557.
- Fealy, R., Allott, N., Broderick, C., de Eyto, E., Dillane, M., Erdil, R.M., Jennings, E., McCrann, K., Murphy, C., O'Toole, C., Poole, R., Rogan, G., Ryder, E., Taylor, D., Whelan, K. and White, J. (2010) RESCALE: Review and Simulate Climate and Catchment Responses at Burrishoole, Final Summary Report, Marine Research Sub Programme 2007-2013, Marine Institute, Oranmore, Co. Galway, pp1-126 ISSN: 2009-3195
- Fealy, R. (2010) An Assessment of Uncertainties in Climate Modelling at the Regional Scale: The Development of Probabilistic Based Climate Scenarios for Ireland, STRIVE Report Series No. 48, Environmental Protection Agency, Co. Wexford, pp 1-66. ISBN 978-1-84095-345-9.
- Murphy, C. and Fealy, R. (2010) Climate Change Impacts for Ireland. Part 2: Changes in Key Climatic Variables. Geographical Viewpoint 38, 29-43
- Murphy, C. and Fealy, R. (2009) ‘Climate Change: Meeting the Challenge of Adaptation', in Critical Infrastructure: Adaptation for Climate Change. The Irish Academy of Engineering, Dublin. ISBN 1-898012-09-1
- Murphy, C. and Fealy, R. (2009) Climate Change Impacts for Ireland. Part 1: The Global Context and Modelling the Future. Geographical Viewpoint, 37, 19-24.
- Fealy, R. (with contributions from Bates, R.) (2009) A Review of Global Climate Projections and Likely Scenarios for Ireland over the Present Century, in Kelly, B and Stack, M (eds) Climate Change, Heritage and Tourism: Implications for Ireland’s Coast and Inland Waterways, The Heritage Council of Ireland Series, pp 24-38. ISBN 978-1-906304-06-5.
- Fealy, R. and Murphy, C. (2009) The Likely Physical Impacts of Future Climate Change on Inland Waterways and the Coastal Environment in Ireland in Kelly, B and Stack, M (eds) Climate Change, Heritage and Tourism: Implications for Ireland’s Coast and Inland Waterways, The Heritage Council of Ireland Series, pp 39-54. ISBN 978-1-906304-06-5.
- Fealy, R. and Fealy, R.M. (2008) The spatial variation in degree-days derived from locational attributes for the 1961 to 1990 period. Irish Journal of Agricultural and Food Research, 47 (1), pp 1-11.
- Fealy, R. and Sweeney, J. (2008) Climate scenarios for Ireland, in Sweeney, J. (ed.) Climate Change: Refining the Impacts. Environmental Protection Agency, Johnstown Castle, Wexford, Government Publications.
- Sweeney, J and Fealy, R. (2008) Global and Irish trends in climate, in Sweeney, J. (ed.) Climate Change: Refining the Impacts. Environmental Protection Agency, Johnstown Castle, Wexford, Government Publications.
- Fealy, R., Bates, R., McElwain, L., Sweeney, J. and Murphy, C. (2008) The Science of Climate Change. A Report prepared by the Climate Change Working group of the Institute of European Affairs, Dublin. ISBN 1-187109-96-6
- Fealy, R. and Sweeney, J. (2008) Statistical downscaling of temperature, radiation and potential evapotranspiration to produce a multiple GCM ensemble mean for a selection of sites in Ireland. Irish Geography, 41, 1, 1-27.
- Fealy, R. and Sweeney, J. (2007) Identification of frequency changes in synoptic circulation types and consequences for glacier mass balance in Norway. Norsk Geografisk Tidsskrift, 61 (2) 76-91. DOI: 10.1080/00291950701374328
- Fealy, R. and Sweeney, J. (2007) Statistical downscaling of precipitation for a selection of sites in Ireland employing a generalised linear modelling approach. International Journal of Climatology, 27, 2083-2094.
- Fealy, R., Murphy, C., McElwain, L. and Sweeney, J. (2006) The Isle of Man Climate Change Scoping Study: Future Climate Change Scenarios and Impacts. Report prepared for Acclimatise and the Department of Local Government and the Environment, Isle of Man Government, 1-23.
- Charlton, R., Fealy, R., Moore, S., Sweeney, J. and Murphy, C. (2006) Assessing the impact of climate change on water supply and flood hazard in Ireland using statistical downscaling and hydrological modelling techniques. Climatic Change, 74 (4), 475-491.
- Murphy, C., Fealy, R., Charlton, R. and Sweeney, J. (2006) The reliability of an "off-the-shelf" conceptual rainfall runoff model for use in climate impact assessment: uncertainty quantification using Latin Hypercube Sampling. Area, 38, 65-78.
- Fealy, R. and Sweeney, J. (2005) Detection of a possible change point in atmospheric variability in the North Atlantic and its effect on Scandinavian glacier mass balance. International Journal of Climatology, 25, 1819-1833.
- Fealy, R. (2003) The impacts of climate change on sea level and the Irish coast, in Sweeney, J. (ed.) Climate Change: Scenarios and Impacts for Ireland. Report prepared for the Environmental Protection Agency, Johnstown Castle, Wexford, 189-222.
- McGrath, R., Fealy, R. and Sheridan. T. (2010) Recent Irish weather extremes and climate change, 9th Scientific Statement, Climate Change Sciences Committee, Royal Irish Academy
- Mooney, P. A., Mulligan, F. J. and Fealy, R. (2009) Analysis of surface air temperatures over Ireland from re-analysis data and observational data, Proceedings of the 2nd International Lund Regional-scale Climate Modelling (RCM) Workshop pp 171-172.
- Fealy, R. (2007) Climate Change: What does it mean (for Ireland)?, Proceedings of the Environmental Ethics and Policy Conference, Royal Dublin Society, 2007.
- Sweeney, J., Murphy, C., Fealy, R., Charlton, R. (2007) Climate change scenarios and challenges for the water environment, Ireland at Risk Report No. 1 The Impact of climate change on the water environment, The Irish Academy of Engineering, ISBN No. 1898 012 938
- Sweeney, J. and Fealy, R. (2006) Downscaling global climate models for Ireland: Providing future climate scenarios. Proceedings of the National Hydrology Seminar, Tullamore, 2006.
- Murphy, C., Fealy, R., Charlton, R. and Sweeney, J. (2005) Changing Precipitation Scenarios: Preliminary implications for groundwater flow systems and planning. Proceedings of the 25th Anniversary Conference on Groundwater in Ireland, Tullamore, 2005.
- Murphy, C., Charlton, R. and Sweeney, J., Fealy, R., (2004) Catering for uncertainty in a conceptual rainfall runoff model: model preparation for climate change impact assessment and the application of GLUE using Latin Hypercube Sampling. Proceedings of the National Hydrology Seminar, Tullamore, 2004.
- Charlton, R., Sweeney, J., Fealy, R., Murphy, C. and Moore, S. (2003) Climate Scenarios for Mid Century and some Preliminary Perspectives on Engineering Implications. Proceedings of the National Hydrology Seminar, Tullamore, 2003.
- Fealy, R. and Sweeney, J. (2002) Contribution to: Progress Report Implementation of the National Climate Change Strategy. Department of Environment and Local Government, Dublin. 1-13.
Selected Conference Papers and Public Presentations
- 2010 Fealy, R., Mooney, P., Foley, A. and Mulligan, F. Truth machine or toys: Repositioning Climate Models for Adaptation, PRTLI Cycle 4 Environment Graduate Programme Summer School, University of Limerick, 28 May, 2010.
- 2010 Mulligan, F., Mooney, P. Fealy, R. Surface air temperatures at 2m over Ireland - A comparison with reanalysis data (ERA-40, ERA-Interim and NCEP/NCAR), Conference of Irish Geographers, NUI Maynooth, April 30-May 2, 2010.
- 2010 Mooney, P., Mulligan, F., Fealy, R. Modelling the Climate of Ireland using the Weather Research and Forecasting model, Conference of Irish Geographers, NUI Maynooth, April 30-May 2, 2010.
- 2010 A Method for Deriving Probabilistic Based Climate Scenarios, Conference of Irish Geographers, NUI Maynooth, April 30-May 2, 2010.
- 2010 Mullan, D., Fealy, R., Favis-Mortlock, D. Downscaling global climate models to produce site-specific future climate change scenarios for the north of Ireland, Conference of Irish Geographers, NUI Maynooth, April 30-May 2, 2010.
- 2010 Climate Change in Ireland: Have the climate models got it wrong?, Undergraduate Research Seminar Series/Dublin Region Higher Education Alliance, Newman Building, UCD, 15 April 2010
- 2010 The Black Arts of Climate Modelling: Dealing with Uncertainties, MSc Renewable Energy Seminar Series, NUI Maynooth, 8 February 2010
- 2010 Climate change impacts on the community in Kerry: Adapting to Uncertainty, Transition Town Tralee, Carlton Hotel, Tralee, 28 January 2010
- 2009 Plenary invited speaker Uncertainty and decision-making: bridging the gap between climate science and policy. Environmental Researchers' Colloquium 2009, Waterford Institute of Technology, 19 February 2009
- 2008 Re-constructing Climate: What can palaeoclimates tell us about the future? Irish Quaternary Association (IQUA) Seminar, Beggars Bush, Friday 21 November, 2008
- 2008 Coping with Uncertainties in Climate Modelling for Ireland, Environmental Protection Agency Fellowship & Scholarship Seminar 2008, Hilton Kilmainham, Dublin 8, 13 November, 2008.
- 2008 Indicators and Impacts of Climate Change for Ireland: Challenges and Opportunities for Irish Tourism, second keynote address to “Tourism and the Environment: Climate Change, Changing Trends”, The International Society of Travel and Tourism Educators (ISTTE) Annual Conference, Clontarf Castle, Dublin 2008, Wednesday, 1 October 2008.
- 2008 Reconstructing Past Climates- A Looking Glass into the Future, presented to the Kerry Archaeological and Historical Society, Kerry County Library, Tralee, 14 April.
- 2007 Climate Change: Likely Impacts on the Irish Landscape. Presented at “Environment and Climate Change: Opportunity and Innovation”, Ceifin Student Conference, GMIT, Galway, 16 October.
- 2007 Climate Change: What does it mean for Ireland? “Exploring the Ethical Issues”, Environmental Ethics Policy Conference, Irish Council for Bioethics, Dublin 9 October.
- 2007 Climate Change Science, Observations and Scenarios. Presented at “Agriculture in a Changing Climate”, Kilkenny Castle, Kilkenny 6 October.
- 2007 Science of Climate Change: Impacts and Implications for Ireland, (with Bates, R., UCD). Presented at “Carbon Day”, Institute of European Affairs, Europe House, Dublin. 1 June.
- 2007 Climate Change: What are We Getting Hot and Bothered About? Presentation to the PROBUS Millennium Group, Tralee, Kerry. 14 May.
- 2007 Precipitation Scenarios and Implications for Flooding in Ireland, (with Murphy, C.). Presented at “Climate Change and Extreme Events”, workshop organised by the Environment Protection Agency on behalf of the British Irish Council (BIC), Customs House, Dublin. 23 April.
- 2005 An Assessment of the Relationship between Glacier Mass Balance and Synoptic Climate in Norway: Likely Future Implications of Climate Change. Presented at the International Association of Meteorology and Atmospheric Sciences (IAMAS) Scientific Assembly 2005, Beijing, China. 4 August., Invited Chairperson for Session C8 on ‘General Climate Contributions’.
- 2004 Review of Issues Relating to Climate Change Impacts, Vulnerability and Adaptation: Review of Ireland’s Third National Communication to the UN, (with Sweeney, J.). Presentation to the review panel of the United Nations Framework Committee on Climate Change (UNFCCC), Custom House, Dublin. 2 November.
Current PhD Supervision
- Cathrina Duffy ‘Modelling the effects of climate change on the incidence of pests and diseases: a spatial analysis of the potential impacts on Irish agricultural productivity' (with R. Fealy, Dr. J. Spink, Teagasc)
- Ciaran Pollard ‘Temperature-based life-history model of blue willow beetle (Phratora vulgatissima) and evaluation of temperature effects on resistance' (with Dr. C. Griffin, NUIM)
- Eoin Grealis ‘The Impact of Climate Change Adaption and Policy Instruments on Local, Regional and National Greenhouse Gas Emissions: A spatially disaggregated policy assessment' (with Dr. C. O'Donoghue and R. Fealy, Teagasc)
- Stephanie Keogh ‘Quantifying CO2 flux concentrations for Dublin from two instrumented sites' (with Dr. G. Mills, UCD)
- Paul Alexander 'An Applied Urban Climate Model for Dublin' (with Dr. G. Mills, UCD)
- Aideen Foley PhD. ‘Quantifying sources of uncertainty in regional climate scenarios for Ireland' (2007-2010) (Co-supervisor)
- Donal Mullen PhD. (Queens University Belfast) ‘Future climate change: the potential for increased soil erosion by water in Northern Ireland' (2009-2012) (with Dr. Favis-Mortlock, Oxford University)
- Ciaran Broderick PhD. ‘Quantifying Uncertainties in Climate Change Scenarios and Hydrological Responses: A Case Study of the Burrishoole Catchment' (with Dr. Conor Murphy, NUIM)
Guest Contributor to:
- Nine O’Clock News, 2 February 2007
- Primetime, 17 October 2006, 1 February 2007
- Seoige & O’Shea, 12 January 2007
- SCOPE Science Series, 6 March 2006
- Radio Kerry, November 2005, 6 February, 15 March, 3 November 2007
- KCLR 96FM (Kilkenny Carlow Regional Radio), 15 March, 4 October 2007
- Morning Ireland, 2 February 2007
- The Right Hook, Newstalk 106, 2 February 2007
- WLR FM (Waterford Local Radio), 2 February 2007
- South East Radio, 2 February 2007
- Cork 96FM Radio, 2 February, 2 July, 29 August 2007
- Cork FM 103, 12 November 2007
- The Wide Angle, Newstalk 106, 11 November 2006
- Enviro, NEAR FM 101.6, 30 July 2007
- Near FM, 29 August 2007
- INN (Independent News Networks), 29 August 2007
- Q102 FM, 29 August 2007
- Clare FM, 29 August 2007
- The Saturday Edition, Newstalk 106, 1 September, 2007
- Irish Times, 3 February, 6 March 2007
- Donegal Times, 22 February 2007
- Irish Times, 7 February 2007
- Galway Independent, 7 February 2007
- Irish Examiner, 3 February 2007
- Sunday Independent, 29 October 2006
- Sunday Tribune, 11 May 2003, 14 October, 21 October 2007
- Irish Independent, May 2003
- University Newsletter, May 2007, September 2007
- Local Planet, September 2007
External Assignments and Public Service
- Management Committee (2009-2011) COST Action 733: Harmonisation and Applications of Weather Types Classifications for European Regions
- Contributions to climate and energy policy sections of the Regional Planning Guidelines 2010-2022 for the Borders Region
- Advisory Panel ‘Carbon Cycles and Sinks Network'
- Reviewer for national and international reports and journals (Marine Institute publications, International Journal of Climatology, Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology, Physics and Chemistry of the Earth)
- Expert reviewer for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Fourth Assessment Report (AR4) published in 2007
- Participated in the Irish delegation reporting to a United Nations expert panel to fulfil Ireland’s requirements under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)
- Participated as an Irish representative/negotiator at international climate meetings (IPCC, World Climate Conference)
- Chairperson of the Science of Climate Change Working Group, Institute of European Affairs
- Co-Organiser (with the IPCC Technical Support Unit, Working Group I), of the first Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) meeting to be held in Ireland. This workshop, titled “Uncertainty and Risk”, was held as part of the international meetings in support of the Fourth Assessment Report, NUI Maynooth, 11-13 May, 2004
- Co-Organiser (with Kilkenny Campus, NUIM) of conference, titled “Agriculture in a Changing Climate”, Kilkenny Campus, 5-6 October 2007
- Organised conference, titled “Climate Change in Ireland: New Perspectives on Scenarios and Impacts” on behalf of the Environmental Protection Agency and the British-Irish Council, 4 December 2002
National Representation at International Congresses:
- National representative/negotiator (with Ray McGrath, Met Éireann), on behalf of the Department of Environment, Heritage and Local Government (DoEHLG) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), to the 21st session of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) on Good Practice Guidance for Land Use, Land-Use Change and Forestry (GPG-LULUCF), Vienna, 3-7 November 2003
- National representative/delegate, on behalf of the Environmental Protection Agency, to the World Climate Change Conference, Moscow, 29 September-3 October 2003
- National representative at an international meeting held in support of the Fourth Assessment Report (AR4), titled “Uncertainty and Risk”, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Maynooth, 11-13 May 2004
Membership of Professional Bodies
- Committee Member, Irish Committee on Climate Change, Royal Irish Academy.
- Member of the Geographical Society Of Ireland