WMO Co-Organizing Expert Meeting on Droughts and Indices

Wmo8 December 2009: The World Meteorological Organization (WMO), jointly with the US National Drought Mitigation Center (NDMC) at the University of Nebraska, is organizing the Inter-Regional Workshop on Indices and Early Warning Systems for Drought from 8-11 December 2009, in Lincoln, Nebraska, US.

The workshop is bringing togetherinternational experts from the National Meteorological and Hydrological Services (NMHSs), climate and agricultural research institutes, universities and environmental monitoring organizations. It is co-sponsored by the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), and the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD). The objective of the workshop is to recommend standard drought indices for various types of droughts and to develop guidelines for countries in implementing and improving drought early warning systems, in light of the fact that climate change is projected to lead tomore frequent, longer and more severe drought.

Speaking at the opening of the workshop, Mannava K. Sivakumar, Director, WMO Climate Prediction and Adaptation Branch, stressed the role that real- and near-real-time weather and climate information can play in early warning activities, allowing individuals and communities to act in sufficient time to reduce the possibility of loss of life, personal injury and damage to property and fragile environments. [WMO Press Release]