Global Observing System (GOS)
Programmes > WWW > GOS


About the Global Observing System

Purpose and scope

The Global Observing System (GOS) provides from the Earth and from outer space observations of the state of the atmosphere and ocean surface for the preparation of weather analyses, forecasts, advisories and warnings, for climate monitoring and environmental activities carried out under programmes of WMO and of other relevant international organizations. It is operated by National Meteorological Services, national or international satellite agencies, and involves several consortia dealing with specific observing systems or specific geographic regions.

The current GOS will be morphed into an optimized composite system comprising several sub-systems. Areas of emphasis in the implementation of GOS may differ in the individual countries, but cost-effectiveness, long-term sustainability and new collaborative arrangements among Members are key elements in the future design and operation of the observing networks. Meeting the requirements of monitoring the climate and the environment, in collaboration with partner organizations, is a priority.

The GOS is the most important programme of WMO for observing, recording and reporting on the weather, climate and the related natural environment for the preparation of operational forecast and warning services and related information. It also makes substantial contribution to enabling the delivery of increasingly accurate and reliable warnings of severe events related to weather, water, climate and the related natural environment throughout the world.

Finally, the restructured GOS will serve as an essential component for improving the effectiveness, efficiency and flexibility of structure and operations of WMO.

Main long-term objectives

The main long-term objectives of the Global Observing System are:

(a) To improve and optimize global systems for observing the state of the atmosphere and the ocean surface to meet the requirements, in the most effective and efficient manner, for the preparation of increasingly accurate weather analyses, forecasts and warnings, and for climate and environmental monitoring activities carried out under programmes of WMO and other relevant international organizations;

(b) To provide for the necessary standardization of observing techniques and practices, including the planning of networks on a regional basis to meet the requirements of the users with respect to quality, spatial and temporal resolution and long-term stability.




©2016 World Meteorological Organization, 7bis, avenue de la Paix, CP No. 2300, CH-1211 Geneva 2, Switzerland - Tel.: +41(0)22 730 81 11 - Fax: +41(0)22 730 81 81Disclaimer | UN System | Accessibility


Extranet Homepage Website Public Comms