WMO Symposium Focuses on Improving Drought Information Systems

WMO11 November 2011: The International Symposium on Integrated Drought Information Systems aimed to help countries, regions and communities move toward approaches that embrace drought preparedness and mitigation. Participants focused on the need for more coordinated polices to manage the risks of drought.

The conference, which took place in Casablanca, Morocco, from 9-11 November 2011, focused on management of drought and improving early warning systems, including monitoring, prediction, risk assessment and communication, particularly the hesitance of countries to use drought prediction results and decision support tools effectively in practice. Climate change issues remained high on the priority list as participants considered issues including, partnerships, lessons from the drought in the Horn of Africa, international drought information systems, a global drought monitoring portal, water information in planning and managing drought, and disaster risk reduction (DRR).

The symposium was hosted by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) and the National Meteorological Service of Morocco. It was the second event in 2011 that the WMO and UNCCD organized as part of the process leading up to a High Level Meeting on National Drought Policy, planned for March 2013. [WMO Press Release] [Meeting Agenda]