News / Press releases

New Polar Challenge Launched
16 January 2015

Geneva/Tromsø (19 January 2015) The World Climate Research Program (WCRP) is launching a Polar Challenge to reward the first team able to send an Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV) for a 2,000 kilometer mission under the sea-ice in the Arctic or Antarctic. 

The aim is to stimulate the development of a sorely-needed monitoring tool for the Polar regions and ultimately to expand scientific research capabilities and climate services in both the Arctic and Antarctic.

“The cryosphere is a major indicator of global climate change and plays a fundamental role in our climate system,” said WCRP Director David Carlson.

New Media Centre
13 January 2015

WMO has revamped the media centre on its website to centralize news and  information in a more user-friendly format.

The media centre provides details of WMO press releases, activities and  publications as well as news from National Meteorological and Hydrological Services around the world. It provides links to social media and multi-media content, including the acclaimed series of weather reports from the future.

It is initially available in English, French and Spanish.

The new media centre is part of continuing efforts at WMO to upgrade its website. This drive will be accelerated during 2015.


Scientific Assessment of Ozone Depletion Published
19 December 2014

The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and World Meteorological Organization (WMO) have published the “Scientific Assessment of Ozone Depletion: 2014,”detailing of the state of the ozone layer. The report is issued every four years by the Scientific Assessment Panel (SAP) of the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer. It provides Parties to the Montreal Protocol with critical information as they undertake their ozone protection activities and address challenges under the Protocol.

A summary “Assessment for Decision Makers” was published in September 2014. The full report, prepared by nearly 300 scientists from 36 countries, contains additional details on how to speed up the recovery of the ozone layer.

WMO-backed study confirms 2014 on track to be Europe’s warmest year on record
17 December 2014

A new analysis of European temperature data from January through November 2014 confirms that 2014 will almost certainly be the region’s warmest year on record. Initial estimates forecast the January-December annual mean temperature for Europe to be 0.3°C above the previous record set in 2007. The top-10 of warmest years includes all the years from the year 2000 onward, with 1989 as the only exception, at sixth place.

A European perspective on this hot year is provided via the Climate Indicator Bulletin. It includes a statement on the attribution of this warmth, which is the focus of a separate press release from Climate Central. The analysis was conducted through the European Climate Assessment & Dataset project by a consortium of national weather services, the IEG EUMETNET, and leading research institutes. It was coordinated by the Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute (KNMI) and constitutes an output of the WMO Regional Climate Center - Network for Europe.

Global Drought Information System
17 December 2014

A group of international experts convened in Pasadena, USA to discuss the next steps in coordinating global and regional information on drought monitoring, forecasting, and management. The Global Drought Information System (GDIS) Workshop: Next Steps was held from 11-13 December 2014 to review the physical mechanisms and predictability of drought world-wide, review and discuss regional capabilities and needs versus global capabilities, and to develop pilot projects as part of a limited duration real time demonstration of current GDIS capabilities.

As such, the workshop goals address the fact that there is currently no global, authoritative, and consistent information on drought that is easily accessible to all users, including such information as our understanding of the physical mechanisms and predictability of drought, real time assessments of on-going drought, and predictions. 

UNFCCC: World on Track to New Universal Climate Agreement with Lima Call for Climate Action
15 December 2014

A new 2015 agreement on climate change, that will harness action by all nations, took a further important step forward in Lima following two weeks of negotiations by over 190 countries, according to the UNFCCC. 
Nations concluded by elaborating the elements of the new agreement, scheduled to be agreed in Paris in late 2015, while also agreeing the ground rules on how all countries can submit contributions to the new agreement during the first quarter of next year.

EL NIÑO/LA NIÑA - Current Situation and Outlook
4 December 2014

Geneva, 4 December 2014 (WMO) - Steady warming of the tropical Pacific Ocean over the past two months has resulted in ocean surface temperatures reaching weak El Niño levels. However, the overlying atmosphere is showing a mix of responses, with some indicators exceeding El Nino thresholds, while others remain neutral.  Models and expert opinion suggest there is approximately a 70% chance that a weak El Niño event will become established before the end of February 2015. If an event does occur, it is most likely to be weak and persist for the first quarter of 2015. Some El Nino-like impacts have already been observed in several countries, and impacts in other areas may develop regardless of whether an El Nino becomes fully established. National Meteorological and Hydrological Services and other agencies will continue to monitor Pacific Ocean conditions for further El Niño developments, and will assess the most likely local impacts.

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How could climate change affect our weather in the year 2050?
1 December 2014

WMO releases new series of “weather reports from the future” for Lima  Climate Change Conference

If humanity’s greenhouse gas emissions continue to increase, the average temperature of the Earth’s lower atmosphere could rise more than 4°C (7.2°F) by the end of the 21st century. But what does a global average temperature rise really mean? How would we experience it on a daily basis?

To find out what could lie in store, WMO invited television weather presenters from around the world to imagine a “weather report from the year 2050.” What they created are only possible scenarios, and not true forecasts. Nevertheless, they are based on the most up-to-date climate science, and they paint a compelling picture of what life could be like on a warmer planet. 

South East Europe meeting on climate services
24 November 2014

A regional consultation in South East Europe has discussed how to pool knowledge and expertise to improve the provision of user-friendly climate services to boost resilience against weather and climate extremes in a region which has recently been hit by both drought and floods.

Participants from Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Georgia, Jordan, FYR of Macedonia, Montenegro, Romania, Serbia, Turkey and Ukraine attended the workshop from 21-22 November in Antalya, Turkey. It brought together meteorologists and hydrologists together with disaster, health, water and agricultural managers, as well as representatives of the World Meteorological Organization, World Health organization and U.N. Development Programme.

Filipe Lucio, Director of the Global Framework for Climate Services Office, told the meeting that there was great scope to use climate services such as seasonal outlooks to improve planning and risk management in many socio-economic sectors to cope with naturally occurring climate variability and long-term climate change.

WMO launches GFCS for SIDS partnership
24 November 2014

As part of its contribution to the International Conference on Small Island Developing States (SIDS), WMO, on behalf of all its partners, has launched a new partnership for strengthening weather and climate services in SIDS in the Caribbean, South Pacific, Indian Ocean and other regions.

“There is a lot of talent and skill residing in the weather services of small island States,” said WMO Deputy Secretary-General Jerry Lengoasa, who is attending the conference. “But given their small size, these countries need to join forces with partners to develop a critical mass of operational capacity. WMO is fully committed to supporting small islands as they attract investments and build partnerships for developing and using weather and climate services.”