The first ancestor of the current CAeM was the Commission for the Application of Meteorology to Air Navigation (CAMAN) established by the Paris Conference of Directors (CD) of the International Meteorological Organization (IMO) as early as 1919. The rapid development of the civil aviation after the end of the World War I required development of internationally agreed methods and procedures to address the needs of the aviation for meteorological data and information. It should be noted that already in 1920 regular air services were established between London, Paris, Brussels and Amsterdam.
International civil aviation wanted observing stations at airports and forecasting offices at the more important ones. Another essential need was for a telecommunications system to permit the rapid interchange of reports between one airport and another, including special priority for reports of sudden deteriorations. All these requirements were so compelling that civil aviation authorities throughout the world were prepared to help in the financing of surface and upper-air observing stations at important locations, including airports, in the worldwide planning of air routes.
The rapid expansion of civil aviation resulted in existing national Meteorological Services improving their observing networks and new national Meteorological Services being created, some of them by the civil aviation department in their country and so with responsibilities exclusively for civil aviation. Reports from all these observing stations were, of course, available for other purposes including research and the provision of weather forecasts for shipping, agriculture, the general public and so on.
The CAMAN in those early years had to coordinate with another new body – the International Commission for Air navigation (ICAN). However, this coordination was complicated by the fact that CAMAN was not an inter-governmental body. Therefore, IMO, at its Warsaw Conference of Directors in 1935, replaced CAMAN by a new International Commission for Aeronautical Meteorology (ICAeM) consisting of members appointed by governments in order that it could work effectively with ICAN. Thus, ICAeM became the first inter-governmental body in meteorology and its experience influenced the transformation of IMO after the World War II into the inter-governmental World Meteorological Organization (WMO).
The First Congress of WMO (Geneva, 1951) established Technical Commissions including the Commission for Aeronautical Meteorology (CAeM) on the basis of the ICAeM. During the same period, WMO and the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) established formal Working Arrangements that entered into force on 1 January 1954. During the 60s and 70s of the 20th century, CAeM has held joint sessions with ICAO, normally during the so called MET Divisional meetings. The fifth CAeM (Geneva, 1971) was the first time the Commission was conducted on its own. Regular sessions have been conducted after 1986 normally at four-year interval, from time to time as conjoint session with ICAO.