Early warnings, greenhouse gas monitoring top WMO Executive Council agenda

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A detailed road map to provide early warnings against dangerous weather for everyone on the planet and an implementation plan for a new Global Greenhouse Gas Watch initiative are top the agenda of the annual World Meteorological Organization (WMO) Executive Council

The Executive Council meeting from 10-14 June will consider a raft of other measures, including scaled up action on the cryosphere (ice and snow) in the face of rapid climate change; closing the gap in the global observing network; improving climate monitoring and climate services; and satellite and space weather programmes.

“We just had the hottest 12-month period on record and a recent WMO report makes it clear that the record-breaking warming path is likely to continue over the next five years. Alarmingly, a new US report shows that carbon dioxide is accumulating in the atmosphere faster than ever — accelerating on a steep rise to levels far above any experienced during human existence. We are heading in the wrong direction,” said WMO Secretary-General Celeste Saulo. “As the UN Secretary-General says, we are playing Russian roulette with our planet,” she said.

“Climate change impacts and more extreme weather are greatly increasing the need for strong National Meteorological and Hydrological Services. At the same time, rapid advances in satellite technology, supercomputing and Artificial Intelligence provide new and exciting possibilities to harness science for the benefit of society. We must seize the opportunities to meet the challenges,” said Celeste Saulo, who became WMO Secretary-General at the start of 2024.

“Every single day we are working to support the adaptation and mitigation agenda to support sustainable development,” she said.

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