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WMO/ESCAP Experts Confirm: 2013 Typhoon Season Well-above Average

typhooncommittee21 February 2014: The 46th Session of the Typhoon Committee of the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) and the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) confirmed that an above-average number of storms occurred in the 2013 typhoon season.

The Western North Pacific Ocean basin faced 31 tropical storms, compared to an average of 25.6 between 1981-2010. Thirteen of these storms reached typhoon intensity, including Typhoon Haiyan, which hit the Philippines in November 2013, causing massive devastation to the Philippines, as well as damage to parts of China and Viet Nam.

The Committee, which met from 10-13 February 2014, in Bangkok, Thailand, addressed the WMO Emergency Response to Typhoon Haiyan and follow-up actions, and was invited to contribute to developing and participating in the WMO expert mission to the Philippines and Viet Nam. The Shanghai Typhoon Institute received the Roman L. Kintanar Award in recognition of its efforts to mitigate impacts and risks resulting from tropical cyclones, and for publishing ‘Tropical Cyclone Research and Review' as well as an assessment of the impacts of climate change on tropical cyclones in the Western North Pacific Ocean basin.

The meeting brought together 72 participants, including ten of the Committee's 14 members, WMO and ESCAP representatives, invited guests and observers. The ESCAP/WMO Typhoon Committee, which has been meeting annually since 1968, aims to reduce the loss of lives and to minimize social, economic and environmental impacts caused by typhoon-related disasters through integrated and enhanced regional collaboration. [WMO Press Release] [ESCAP/WMO Typhoon Committee Website] [46th Session of the Typhoon Committee Website]