Climate Monitoring Products
The Earth’s climate shows great variability over different time scales, from seasons to decades to thousands of years and more. These variations and potential changes can have serious affects on human health, security and safety. The only way to know these changes are occurring and attempt to know what is driving these changes, is to keep accurate, long-term records of the atmosphere and other climate indicators (e.g. global mean Earth surface temperature and precipitation).
By carefully monitoring the climate, the effects of extreme events can be lessoned and prepared fore.g. the development of severe storms can be tracked and t heir movements predicted. Close and meticulous monitoring also allows for the detection of climate change, its driving forces as well as its impacts around the world.
Monitoring the global climate also helps with regional or national weather predictions. Local conditions do not occur in isolation to the rest of the world, and the status of the regional and global climate directly influences local weather.
WMO provides several products and services on Climate Monitoring:
Global Monitoring Products
WMO Statement on the Status of the Global Climate
Since 1993, the WMO has issued annual statements on the status of the global climate to provide credible scientific information on the climate and its variability. The statement describes climatic conditions, including extreme weather events and provides a historical perspective on the variability and trends that have occurred since the nineteenth century.
El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) Updates
The WMO produces an El Niño/La Niña update on a quasi-regular basis (approximately once in three months) through a collaborative effort between WMO and the International Research Institute for Climate and Society (IRI). Monitoring the status of the El Niño/La Niña phenomenon is particularly important given it’s impact on global climate conditions.
[More in depth information] The most recent WMO El Niño/La Niña Update can be found here.
[Further information] There is also an archive of past updates.
Global Atmospheric Constituent Bulletins
The WMO Global Atmosphere Watch (GAW) programme promotes systematic and reliable observations of the global atmospheric environment. The data are collected and distributed by the World Data Centre for Greenhouse Gases (WDCGG) at the Japan Meteorological Agency. The GAW issues the annual Greenhouse Gas Bulletin, which reports on the latest trends and atmospheric burdens of the most influential, long-lived greenhouse gases, carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), and nitrous oxide (N2O), as well as a summary of the contributions of the lesser gases.
The GAW also monitors the concentration of Ozone in the atmosphere which has various positive and negative aspects. The WMO publishes annual Antarctic and Arctic Ozone Bulletins on the status of the Ozone layer in these locations. The bulletins are based on data provided by WMO Members that operate atmospheric monitoring stations in the Arctic and satellites to observe ozone and related parameters globally.
[Further information] about GAW Research on Stratospheric Ozone can be found here.
[Further information] More examples of global climate monitoring products can be found here.
Regional Monitoring Products
Growing economic losses, coupled with an increase in deaths caused by extreme climate and weather events, have drawn the attention of governments, the scientific community and the public at large. The climate watch system provides advisories and statements to inform and alert users, particularly those involved in natural hazards preparedness, mitigation and response, about evolving or foreseen climate anomalies and extremes at the regional and national levels, thus allowing them to make informed decisions.
Climate Monitoring Products from WMO Regional Climate Centres
Regional monitoring is amongst the mandatory functions of WMO Regional Climate Centres. These are Centres of Excellence that assist WMO Members in a given region to deliver better climate services and products including climate data services, monitoring products and long-range forecasts, and to strengthen their capacity to meet national climate information needs.
National Monitoring Products
National climate monitoring is usually a key responsibility of the National Meteorological and Hydrological Service (NMHS). Most HMHSs continuously monitor the national climate to help with forecasting and predictions.
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