Some 3.5 billion people reside in urban areas. This number is projected to reach 6.3 billion by 2050, increasing from 50% to more than 70% of the world’s population. This poses both opportunities and challenges. About 70% of greenhouse gas emissions come from urban areas, which consequently offer huge potential for climate change mitigation through increased energy efficiency and a move away from polluting forms of production.
Urban development now has its own sustainable development goal (SDG 11): Make cities inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable. WMO is therefore contributing to the new urban agenda developed by HABITAT III, which takes place in Quito, Ecuador from 17-20 October, 2016).
Urban meteorology is a rapidly developing area. WMO is working to improve impact-based forecasts and risk-based warnings for megacities, which often faces simultaneous hazards (eg winds, storm surge and inundation from tropical cyclones).
A particular focus I on improved air quality products and services, given the increasing challenges posed by air pollution. WMO’s Global Atmosphere Watch programme is working to deliver tailored products to users. Atmospheric models are critical in providing information on global and regional air quality, and on the intercontinental transport of pollutants. Models can also be used to explore the future impact of natural and anthropogenic change on atmospheric pollution to better inform policy-makers, businesses and citizens.
A glance of WMO’s contribution to the urban agenda is here
WMO brochure on sustainable cities available here
Habitat III conference here
WMO co-organised/involved events on the HABITAT-III conference:
Monday, 17 October 01:30 PM - 03:30 PM Special SessionsRoom 16-Teatro Demetrio Aguilera Casa De La Cultura
Monday, 17 October 04:00 PM - 06:00 PM Special SessionsNational Library Casa De La Cultura
Side Event, Thursday, 20 October, 08:30 AM - 10:00 AM One UN PavilionOne UN Pavilion - Room B
Side Event, Thursday, 20 October, 10:00 AM - 11:30 AM One UN PavilionOne UN Pavilion - Room B
- “Meetings with WMO” in the “Talk with the United Nations” Room at the One UN Pavilion on:
Tuesday, 18 October, from 2.30 to 3.00 p.m.
Wednesday, 19 October, from 5.00 to 5.30 p.m.
Thursday, 20 October, from 12.00 to 12.30 p.m.