This year, the World Meteorological Organization will address two issues.
The first one is “How to provide safe access to early warning systems for extreme weather events for the entire population?” Due to climate change and human activity, extreme events are increasing. As these natural disasters have important impacts on the populations, it is essential to know how to guarantee the inhabitants have early warning systems.
Indeed, human-induced climate disturbances are now causing devastating damage in many parts of the world. As the temperature of the planet rises, the frequency of these incidents increases.
At the end of a first day dedicated to the opening ceremony and lobbying, all delegations united around a single resolution. The Mexican delegation presented the text and then responded to the various points of information. The amendments?
After the intervention of “…, an expert in …,” the delegates continued to debate the amendments.
Most of the amendments were adopted unanimously and,inally, the resolution proposes to improve the infrastructure, emergency accommodation and warning systems and to make them accessible to all. Also mentioned is the continuation and expansion of research on natural disasters, as well as the creation of specialized meteorological studies, the training of specialists in all countries. This latter point ensures that experts can analyze the situations and help the populations. In addition, it seems essential to educate and sensitize the latter from a very young age through workshops or courses. Citizens would also be invited to help in the collection of data by sending photos of the sky in particular. This would of course be verified by professionals, and many images would be needed for comparison. Finally, countries agree to find common ground by sharing data, and by creating universally accessible sites, in the event that sites are blocked in some countries. Information could also be shared through social networks, by creating official accounts linked to each state. It was proposed to present a common risk scale for all regions of the world, as well as for all types of weather events, to facilitate understanding. The financing would be drawn from a common fund, to which each country would contribute according to its budgetary capacities. Moreover, all this would be managed directly by the UN, while taking into account the American expertise on the subject.
Finally, the resolution was adopted unanimously.
The second issue deals with weather data collection: why and how to involve citizens.
Collecting weather data is a priority to protect people from disasters and extreme weather events. It is clear that the more data governments and organizations have, the better they will be able to prepare for these tragic events. This is why the integration of citizens in the collection of weather data could be a very effective solution. Indeed, the more data there is, the safer people will be. The purpose of today’s debate will be to determine if citizens can help organizations in the collection of data, and if so, how.
The delegation from Japan will introduce the second issue and therefore the second resolution. There is a very good understanding between the different delegations and the debate is relatively calm because almost all the different delegations have similar objectives. We talk about education, awareness and education of the populations to help ensure the data collection is accurate and relevant. The delegations also proposed the mobilization and creation of funds to develop new technologies for the development of advanced technologies for the collection of meteorological data. However, some less developed countries with a high rate of uneducated citizens, such as Madagascar with 25 percent of the population illiterate, is in difficulties in relation to this idea, as the population is not able to collect data. The first resolution was therefore passed with almost no votes against.
The second resolution introduced by the delegation of Costa Rica puts forward more economic aspects of the problem. On the one hand, creating infrastructure that could facilitate data collection is a possibility, but it is also very important to find the necessary money to finance these projects. Another major part of the discussion was focused on the question of whether citizens are really able to collect data because even if they could be rewarded for their contribution, they would need sophisticated training..
This second resolution passed.