The Global Climate Observing System celebrated its 20th anniversary at a ceremony 29 June during WMO’s Executive Council. The anniversary provides an opportunity to take stock of the accomplishments of the first twenty years, and to plan ahead for new opportunities and challenges.
Systematic long-term observations of the system are vital to understand the natural variability of the Earth’s climate system, detecting whether man’s activities are changing it. Increased accuracy and coverage in many observations are required. Associated with expanded observations is the need to develop appropriate comprehensive global information bases for the rapid and efficient dissemination and utilization of data.
Despite key accomplishments in the last 20 years, there are still a significant number of needs to be met. This is especially the case in developing countries, where some networks have been deteriorating, rather than improving.
The Global Climate Observing System is one of the essential elements for a new Global Framework for Climate Services. New climate services are being demanded by important user sectors, including water resources, agriculture, health and disaster risk management. The Global Climate Observing System must be capable of meeting the needs for these new services at global, regional and local scales. Indeed, the effectiveness of climate services will depend at least partly on the adequacy of the component observing networks on which the Global Climate Observing System is built. >>More