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Commission for Hydrology

The Commission for Hydrology (CHy) shapes the water related activities of the WMO and addresses issues related to the basic hydrological observation network, water resources assessment, flood forecasting and management, adaptability to climate variability and change and promotes exchange of technology and capacity building. In particular the outcomes of its deliberations provide guidance to WMO Member countries and WMO Secretariat for the implementation of the Hydrology and Water Resources Programme of WMO.

Areas of activity include integrated hydrological networks, hydrological forecasting systems, hydrological aspects of natural disasters and environmental issues, assessment of water use, latest advances in hydrological technology and practical implementation of IWRM principles with particular attention to integrated flood management. This information is incorporated into technical standards, reports or guidelines that can be used by NHSs in their work.

To enhance the capacity of the CHy to respond to the needs of the members, at its thirteenth session (1999) the World Meteorological Congress revised the Commission's terms of reference. The new terms of reference shifted the focus of the CHy activities from regulation and standardization of methods and instruments of observation and data exchange, to a broader approach to hydrology and water resources problems in the context of socio-economic development and environmental protection. New emphasis was put on international exchange of experience and technology, the international dissemination of hydrological information, forecasts and warnings and on raising the public awareness of the social, economic and environmental significance of water.

The 14th Session of the WMO Commission for Hydrology (CHy-14) was held at the WMO Headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland from 6 to 14 November 2012.



It was in September 1959, that the Commission for Hydrology was formally established with Prof. Max Kohler as its first President. The Commission is now entering into its 50th Year of existence. With its first session organised in 1961, this year the Commission will meet for its Thirteenth Session from 4-12 November 2008 in Geneva.

With a view to look back at the past 50 years, a special issue of the WMO Bulletin has been brought out. It provides the essence of the 50-years lifespan of the Commission with interesting historical information on its troubled birth to the adoption of the subtitle, “Weather, Climate and Water” in 2003. The successes of the past 50 years have been nurtured by many experts through their contributions. This session is going to set the scene for the Commission to contribute to meeting the challenges of the future.



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