A regional workshop aimed at strengthening the provision of climate services like seasonal outlooks and El Niño forecasts and tailoring them to user needs in Latin America takes place in San José, Costa Rica 28-30 July.
The meeting is organized under the auspices of the Global Framework for Climate Services (GFCS) and aims to agree on a regional action plan for the future. It is co-orgamized by the GFCS, Instituto Meteorológico Nacional of Costa Rica, Mexico’s Comisión Nacional del Agua(CONAGUA), Spain’s Agencia Estatal de Meteorologia (AEMET) and El Centro Internacional para la Investigación delFenómeno de El Niño – CIIFEN.
The workshop aims to bring together experts from the National Meteorological and Hydrological Services (NMHSs) and key decision-makers in the agriculture, water management, disaster risk reduction and health sectors. These are the four priority areas of the GFCS.
It is one of a series of regional and national meetings taking place around the world as momentum gains behind the WMO-spearheaded drive to translate advances in climate science into concrete action to improve lives and protect livelihoods.
“All the investment made in adaptation, mitigation and climate risk management will fritter away or even be wasted, if they are not based on the best scientific knowledge available, the best information possible,” said M. Edgar Gutiérrez, Minister of Environment and Energy of Costa Rica at the opening ceremony of the meeting.
The workshop takes place ahead of the anticipated development of an El Niño event later this year. El Niño and its counterpart, La Niña, have major consequences, typically leading to the risk of drought and floods in different parts of Latin America. The ability to predict El Niño several months in advances in one of the achievements of climate services and has given governments in the region vital time to make preparations to limit its socio-economic impact.
Specifically, the workshop aims to:
- increase understanding of the needs for climate services in different user sectors;
- build capacity to develop and take advantage of these services;
- strengthen national and regional observation and research networks,
- reinforce climate information distribution chains
- identify and prioritize, ways to promote community understanding and awareness of climate variability and change