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Climate Information and Prediction Services (CLIPS) Project

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The Climate Information and Prediction Services (CLIPS) project was established by WMO in 1995 upon endorsement by the Twelfth World Meteorological Congress, as a new paradigm for climate services based on the vision that socio-economic decisions can benefit substantially from better knowledge of both contemporary and near-future climate conditions. The CLIPS project was conceived as an implementation arm of the World Climate Applications and Services Programme (WCASP), to build on the ongoing research advances and evolving operational networks, particularly on the regional and national scales. The principal objective of CLIPS is to develop the capacity of the National Meteorological and Hydrological Services (NMHSs) to take advantage of the recent advances in climate science and to pass along the benefits to improve climate services with a user focus.

The CLIPS Project builds on the past decades of successful atmospheric and oceanographic research, and on established operational meteorological and hydrological networks involving international and regional centres as well as the NMHSs. At the same time, it builds on a developing capability to predict climate on monthly, seasonal and interannual time scales. The CLIPS Project is working to ensure that the NMHSs are assisted in the design, production, and dissemination of the full suite of climate services. CLIPS is designed to stimulate the use of sector-specific information, in an ongoing, iterative process of dialogue between the producers of climatic information and the multitude of users in government, academia, private industry and the media. It was envisaged right at the beginning of the project that this process would be based on established technical cooperation structure between WMO and the regional and sub-regional bodies especially through the WMO Regional Associations (RAs).

The main project components of CLIPS include training and capacity building, development of best practices in operational climate services including verification and user liaison, communication of El Niño/La Niña and related aspects, determining research needs and liaison with research programmes, demonstration/showcase projects, and regional as well as climate provider-user networking and consensus building.

Over the past decade and half, the main activities underpinning the CLIPS project implementation include:

  • Promotion of operational climate prediction services, particularly on seasonal to interannual scales;
  • Providing an active interface between the research and operational communities;
  • Development of operational frameworks linking global, regional and national level long range forecasts;
  • Establishment of WMO Regional Climate Centres (RCCs) including the development of their formal designation process involving CCl, CBS and RAs;
  • Promotion of consensus-based climate outlook product generation, particularly through its support to the Regional Climate Outlook Forum (RCOF) process;
  • Regular issue of WMO El Niño/La Niña Updates based on global consensus;
  • Capacity building of NMHSs in providing climate services through a worldwide programme of CLIPS Training Workshops;
  • Establishment of a CLIPS Focal Point network and its coordination through Regional CLIPS Rapporteurs;
  • Integration of CLIPS activities into the regional coordination of climate related matters within the RAs;
  • Promotion of climate applications through showcase projects and user liaison activities;
  • Development of CLIPS Curriculum and web-based information;
  • Cross-cutting activities with other WMO technical programmes, especially WCRP, WCDMP, DRR, AgMP, HWR, ETR and WWW, Technical Commissions CBS, CAgM and CHy as well as other global systems such as GCOS and GEO;
  • Closer integration of climate applications activities and CLIPS, including partnerships with UN bodies and international organizations such as WHO, UNWTO, IRI, etc.

The Fifteenth Session of World Meteorological Congress (2007) acknowledged the accomplishments and contributions of CLIPS to the development of climate services around the world and called for an Implementation Plan for future evolution of CLIPS activities, taking into account recent developments in the area.


 

 
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