World Meteorological Congress Approves Implementation Plan of the Global Framework for Climate Services

WMO5 November 2012: The extraordinary session of the World Meteorological Congress concluded with the approval of the governance structure and implementation plan for the Global Framework for Climate Services, an initiative aimed at rolling out user-driven services such as seasonal climate outlooks and El Niño watches, flood prediction and drought monitoring tools.

The Congress, which was organized by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), convened in Geneva, Switzerland, from 29-31 October 2012. According to WMO, approximately 70 countries currently have either inadequate or no climate services, and therefore are vulnerable to natural variations in our climate and human-induced climate change. These countries will be afforded special priority under the Global Framework for Climate Services.

WMO explains that the Global Framework for Climate Services will bring together providers of climate services, researchers and users to ensure that the information provided by meteorologists and climate scientists is understandable and relevant to climate-sensitive activity. Activities will be initially focused on improved service delivery for disaster risk reduction (DRR), health, water management, agriculture and food security.

The Framework's implementation structure includes five components: user Interface platforms; a climate services information system; observations and monitoring; research, modelling and prediction; and capacity building.

According to WMO, the Congress also agreed to establish an Intergovernmental Board on Climate Services, to ensure coordination regionally and globally, and to engage the UN system and other stakeholders to deliver needs-based climate services globally. The Board will operate under the authority of the World Meteorological Congress. [WMO Press Release] [Congress Website]