The first session of the WMO Infrastructure Commission (INFCOM), held from 9 to 13 November, adopted a number of key decisions and recommendations. Despite the challenge of the pandemic, which forced the Session to be held virtually, it was attended by 343 participants representing WMO Members and partner organizations.
INFCOM was established by the World Meteorological Congress in 2019 as part of the WMO Reform. Its first session made historical decisions on the Global Basic Observing Network (GBON), which sets the foundation for substantially enhancing the data made available to WMO Members in support of Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP) and climate re-analysis. A Resolution on GBON was adopted together with the recommendation that its Technical Regulations be adopted by the Extraordinary Session of the World Meteorological Congress in 2021. GBON will enhance the implementation of observing systems in least developed countries and Small Island Developing States (SIDS) with the funding for basic GBON requirement coming through financial instruments, such as the Systematic Observations Financial Facility (SOFF).
The Session also made decisions on a number of issues that will allow the Organization to plan the evolution and further development of infrastructure requirements at the national level. These decisive actions will help to facilitate the provision of information and services by WMO Members to society according to their mandate:
- WMO Information System (WIS) 2.0 Implementation Plan, and Functional Architecture and Demonstration Projects
- Increased opportunities for making more aircraft-based observation data available to NWP thanks to WMO collaboration with the airline industry
- The review of WMO data policies and practices concerning space-based observations
- Progressing with the operational implementation of the WMO Integrated Global Observing System (WIGOS) and integration of observations from all Earth System Domains
- Mechanism for development and implementation of the GCOS Surface Reference Network, and the call for Members to apply to operate the lead centre
- Inclusion of Measurement Quality Classifications for Surface Observing Stations on Land into the WMO Guide on Instruments and Methods of Observation (WMO-No. 8)
- Implementation of Hydrological Activities under the new WMO Structure
- Readiness for the World Radio Telecommunication 2023 and the use of Radio Frequencies for meteorological and related environmental activities
- Amendments to the Manual on the Global Data-Processing and Forecasting System (WMO-No. 485) and the designation of new Global Data Processing and Forecasting System (GDPFS) centres.
The INFCOM also explored how it could better engage with WMO Regional Associations and how to improve the participation of women in its activities.
For more information on the activities and membership of the WMO Infrastructure Commission, visit the INFCOM section of the WMO Community Platform.