April 2008

In the news


IMO Prize / La Niña / meteoalarm / World Water Day / International Polar Year / Caribbean weather radar


Jagadish Shukla awarded the IMO Prize

The President of WMO, Alexander Bedritskiy, presented the 52nd International Meteorological Organization (IMO) Prize—WMO’s most presitigious prize—to Jagadish Shukla at an event hosted by the National Academy of Sciences on 28 March 2008, in Washington DC, USA.


Jagadish Shukla (fourth from left) received the
52nd IMO Prize in Washington DC, USA, on 28 March 2008.

Prof. Shukla, from India, has been president of the Institute of Global Environment and Society since 1991, professor of Earth Sciences and Global Change at George Mason University since 1994 and chairman of Climate Dynamics at George Mason University since 2003.

The IMO Prize recognizes outstanding work in meteorology and hydrology, as well as contributions to international collaboration in both scientific fields. The IMO was the predecessor of WMO (1873-1950).

Mr Jarraud said Prof. Shukla had been “a pillar of the weather and climate research community along a period during which revolutionary advances in atmospheric and oceanic observation, modeling and predictive capabilities have taken place”.

He is also a recipient of the Sir Gilbert Walker Gold Medal of the Indian Meteorological Society, the Rossby Medal of the American Meteorological Society and NASA’s Exceptional Scientific Achievement Medal.

Jagadish Shukla was interviewed in the WMO Bulletin 54(4) in October 2005.

Info Note
IMO Prize



La Niña
La Niña’s cooling effect is only temporary

The current La Niña event, characterized by a cooling of the sea surface in the central and eastern Equatorial Pacific, is a “climate anomaly”, part of natural climate variability. The global climate on average is warming, despite the temporary cooling brought about by La Niña.

This La Niña started in the third quarter of 2007 and is likely to persist through to the middle of 2008. It is rare for a La Niña event to persist for two years or more, such as occurred from early 1998 to early 2000. The likelihood of the current La Niña continuing for such a period will remain unclear for some months, but will be closely monitored.


Cooler autumn days in eastern Australia

According to the Australian Bureau of Meteorology, the outlook for average autumn (March-May) maximum temperatures in Australia shows a moderate shift in the odds favouring cooler-than-normal conditions in southern Queensland and northern New South Wales. This is a result of above-average temperatures in the central to south-east Indian Ocean, and the cooler-than-average temperatures in the equatorial Pacific linked to La Niña.


Wet summer for the Philippines

The Philippines may experience a wet summer this year if the La Niña weather phenomenon lasts, as is expected, until June, according to the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration.

With May and June being the typhoon season, there is the possibility that typhoons hitting the country will be made stronger by La Niña conditions.

La Niña was held responsible for heavy rain in parts of the archipelago earlier in the year.




The Polish Institute of Meteorology and Water Management joined the Network of European meteorological Services (EUMETNET) project EMMA on 1 April 2008 and is participating in the issue of Europe-wide weather warnings from the meteoalarm Website.

More (English) and (Polish)

linelogo wwd

World Water Day (22 March) 2008

The United Nations launched the International Year of Sanitation to accelerate progress for 2.6 billion people worldwide who are without proper sanitation facilities.

World Water Day ’08 had sanitation as its theme.

Message from the Director, UN/ISDR Secretariat

WMO activities



International Polar Year (IPY) 2007-2008
International Polar Day: Changing Earth

In the context of International Polar Year (IPY) 2007-2008, the third International Polar Day was launched on 12 March 2008, focusing on “Changing Earth: past and present”.

Media advisories in English, French, Russian and Spanish


Polar Education and Research Day proclaimed in Kansas


In the context of International Polar Year 2007-2008 (IPY), 27 February has been proclaimed Polar Education and Research Day in Kansas, USA. The state Governor highlighted the University of Kansas’s involvement in educating students and the public about the importance of polar regions in global climate change and sea-level rise.


Center for Remote Sensing of Ice Sheets

IPY is jointly sponsored by WMO and the International Council for Science.


Caribbean weather radar installation nears completion

The Doppler weather radar, being installed by the Caribbean Meteorological Organization (CMO), is nearing completion at Brasso Venado in Trinidad and Tobago. This state-of-the-art project, funded by the European Union, will form part of the Caribbean Early Warning System for predicting and monitoring severe weather conditions.

CMO press release


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