WMO to Establish Global Cryosphere Watch

20 January 2010: The World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) has informed on its ongoing work towards the establishment of a Global Cryosphere Watch to serve societal needs for weather, climate and water, and related environmental information and services.

The proposal to establish such a programme came from the Government of Canada, as a legacy of the International Polar Year 2007-2008, a joint scientific undertaking of the WMO and the International Council for Science. At its next quadrennial session in 2011, the World Meteorological Congress – WMO's supreme governing body – is to consider ways and means of developing and implementing a Global Cryosphere Watch.

The aim of the new programme is to respond to the need for a sustained, robust end-to-end cryosphere observing and monitoring system, not only for polar regions, but also globally. A Global Cryosphere Watch should enhance the capability of the research community and operational services to predict the future state of the cryosphere. It will facilitate assessments of the cryosphere and its components on a regional to global scale to support climate change science, decision making and formulation of environmental policy. [WMO Information Note]