Because climate services are a global public good, the development of the GFCS is being driven by the world’s governments. For decades governments have been working together to establish scientific programmes, operational agencies and international conventions to address the diverse challenges of climate. GFCS marks a critical next step in this process. In 2009, Heads of State and Government, Ministers, and Heads of Delegations of over 150 countries and 70 organizations unanimously decided at the World Climate Conference – 3 to establish the GFCS in order to better serve society’s needs for accurate and timely information on climate variability and change.
The central forum now for governments to discuss GFCS is the Intergovernmental Board on Climate Services and its subsidiary bodies. A number of United Nations agencies are fully engaged in the GFCS under the banner of “The UN System Delivering as One on Climate Knowledge.”
Given the experience and expertise that many national agencies and organizations have developed in providing information, forecasts and services that are relevant to climate adaptation and response, these institutions clearly have a key role to play in guiding the GFCS.