WMO collaborates with the International Maritime Organization (IMO) and the International Hydrographic Organization (IHO) to provide standardized information, forecasts and warnings to ensure the safety of life and property at sea, in support of the International Convention for Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) and the associated Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS). This increasingly includes disseminating maritime safety information for the Arctic, where reduced sea ice, due to melting, is boosting marine traffic.
The WMO Global Data-Processing and Forecasting System (GDPFS) is an international mechanism that coordinates Member capacities to prepare and make meteorological analyses and forecast products available to all. It enables the delivery of harmonized services, including for marine and ocean matters, through a network of Global, Regional and National Centres. More than 40 Regional Specialized Meteorological Centres (RSMCs) have responsibility to support ocean related services including for marine meteorology, ocean wave prediction, severe weather and tropical cyclones. WMO Tropical Cyclone Warning Centres also facilitate international collaboration and the sharing of best practices.
Rising sea levels can damage freshwater supplies and worsen the impact of storms and coastal inundation. Better projections of how storm patterns will change, sea ice will melt and regional sea level will rise is vital for the improved safety of life and property at sea and for coastal zone management. WMO has several initiatives dedicated to helping vulnerable communities, for example, encouraging small-island developing states (SIDS) to provide weather, marine and climate impact-based forecasting services.