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World Climate Conferences

The First World Climate Conference

During the 1960s and 1970s, a series of highly publicised climatic and environmental events, with disastrous consequences, demonstrated the fragility of world food production and trade systems and their dependence on the Earth’s climate system. In 1979, in response to these events,  WMO, UNEP, FAO, UNESCO and WHO convened the First World Climate Conference (FWCC). The purpose of the conference was to assess the state of knowledge of climate and to consider the effects of climate variability and change on human society.

The First World Climate Conference followed a series of UN convened conferences during the 1970s: the United Nations Conference on Environment, Stockholm, 1972 which resulted in the establishment of UNEP; the UN World Food Conference, Rome, 1974, which recognized the central role of climate in world food production; the UN World Water Conference in Mar Del Plata, Argentina, 1976; the UN Conference on Desertification and the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) Resolution endorsing the WMO initiation of a World Climate Programme that drew attention to the global condition. Each conference identified climate impacts as a central concern. The First World Climate Conference led to the establishment of the World Climate Programme (WCP) and its research component, the World Climate Research Programme (WCRP).

[More in depth information] The WMO World Climate Programme website

[More in depth information] The WMO World Climate Research Programme website

The Second World Climate Conference

The Second World Climate Conference (SWCC) co-sponsored by the WMO, UNEP, UNESCO, the UNESCO Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC), FAO and the International Council for Science (ICSU) was convened in Geneva in 1990 with the objectives to review the work of the first decade of the WCP, the First Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), and the development of an International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme (IGBP). The outcome of the Conference, two years later, led to the establishment of the Global Climate Observing System (GCOS). The Conference Statement of SWCC endorsed four streams of international activities:

  1. The future structure of the World Climate Programme (WCP)
  2. Special needs of the Developing Countries to build up their capabilities
  3. Cooperation in international research through the WCRP, IGBP and other related international programmes
  4. Coordinated international activities and policy development through global measurement and research efforts, assessment functions of IPCC and development of a convention on climate change

[More in depth information] on the Global Climate Observing System can be found here.

The World Climate Conference - 3

wcc-3The World Climate Conference - 3 (WCC-3) was held in Geneva in 2009. The Conference aimed to respond to the need of users and sectors worldwide to reduce natural disasters, enhance food security and adapt to climate variability and change as spelled out in the Bali Action Plan, the Nairobi Work Programme and the Hyogo Framework for Action on Disaster Risk Reduction.

One of the main outcomes of the WCC-3 was a decision to establish a Global Framework for Climate Services to strengthen the provision and use of climate predictions, products and information worldwide.

The main components of the Global Framework for Climate Services are:

  1. The User Interface Platform to provide a means for users, user representatives, climate researchers and climate service providers to interact.
  2. The Climate Services Information System to protect and distribute climate data and information according to the procedures agreed by governments and other data providers.
  3. The Observations and Monitoring component to ensure that the climate observations necessary to meet the needs of climate services are generated.
  4. The Research, Modelling and Prediction component will assess and promote the needs of climate services within research agendas.
  5. The Capacity Building component to support systematic development of the necessary institutions, infrastructure and human resources.

[More in depth information] More information about the World Climate Conference – 3 can be found on its website

[Technical information] Detailed information about the Global frame work for climate services can be found on the website of the High-level Taskforce towards (GFCS)

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