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Info Note No.53

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Santiago de Chile/Geneva, 26 March 2009 (WMO/DMC) - The Chilean Directorate of Meteorology (DMC) was founded 125 years ago. The event celebrated today in Santiago de Chile was attended by Mr Michel Jarraud, Secretary-General of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), who highlighted the significant progress made in meteorological services.

The DMC is the institution responsible for meteorological matters in the country, and its aim is to respond to all national needs for weather information and forecasting. Over the years, the DMC and its predecessors have made an effective contribution to satisfying the country’s socio-economic needs, especially in important areas such as aviation, basic and applied research, reducing natural disaster risks, environmental protection and socio-economic development.

“WMO recognizes with appreciation the key contribution of the Chilean authorities, since they have traditionally paid special attention to strengthening the capacities of the Directorate of Meteorology, thereby enabling it to better contribute to sustainable development, the safety of the population and the protection of national infrastructure from weather- and climate-related natural disasters, as well as from the increasingly negative impacts of climate change” Mr M. Jarraud states in his address at today’s ceremony.

The DMC is part of the Directorate-General of Civil Aviation and is headed by Ms Myrna Araneda, who is also the Permanent Representative of Chile with WMO. Ms Araneda was recently elected Vice-President of WMO Regional Association III (South America). WMO Regional Associations are responsible for the coordination of meteorological, hydrological and related activities within their respective Regions.

As a member of WMO since May 1957, Chile actively participates in international efforts to strengthen early warning in order to help protect lives and property. It is actively involved in the implementation of WMO Multi-hazard Prevention Strategy, which aims to reduce by 50 per cent over the decade 2010-2019 the number of fatalities caused by weather-, climate- and water-related natural disasters compared with the 10-year average fatalities of 1995-2004.

WMO and its 188 Members have taken a lead role in the development and provision of climate information for the past 30 years. Among major UN efforts on climate change this year is World Climate Conference-3, which WMO and international partners are convening in Geneva, Switzerland, from 31 August to 4 September. The Conference intends to initiate a global framework for climate services to bring more and better climate information to society for socio-economic development. Climate information and predictions tailored to individual user needs support resource management that can bolster food and water security, as well as disaster risk reduction and preparedness to mitigate the impacts of natural hazards on people’s lives and livelihoods. The Conference thus focuses on the essential role of adaptation and risk management in addressing climate change.

WMO is the United Nations' authoritative voice on weather, climate and water

For more information please contact:

At the WMO: Ms Carine Richard-Van Maele, Chief, Communications and Public Affairs, Tel: +41 (0) 22 730 8314, e-mail:

Ms Gaëlle Sévenier, Press Officer, Tel. +41 (0) 22 730 8417, e-mail:



At the Chilean Directorate of Meteorology

Gabriel Hernández Valenzuela, Communications Office, Tel: +56 2 436 45 11, e-mail:, Karen Lattapiat Navarro, Journalist, Directorate-General of Civil Aviation, e-mail Teléfono: +56 2 4392632.






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