Zimbabwe to host Climate Forum

Theme: Seasonal Climate Prediction, a Strategic Planning Tool in Sustainable Socio-economic Development Place: Rainbow Towers, HARARE, Zimbabwe Date: 26 – 27 August 2010 INTRODUCTION Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) through the Drought Monitoring Centre is organizing the Fourteenth Southern Africa Climate Outlook Forum (SARCOF-14), in Harare, Zimbabwe, 26-27 August 2010. SARCOF-14 is a collaborative effort between the Meteorological Services Department of Zimbabwe, SADC, World Meteorological Organization (WMO), Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO), United States Assistance for International Development (USAID) Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA), Famines Early Warning Systems Network (FEWSNET), Office of Coordination of Humanitarian Assistance, and other partners. SARCOF-14 will immediately follow a eight-day Climate Experts Capacity Building Workshop of SADC national Meteorological/Hydrological Services (NMHSs) for the purposes of developing critical inputs for the public Forum. The Climate Capacity Building Workshop is not open to the public. Proper interpretation of seasonal climate forecasts and their application across various socio-economic decision-making processes still remain challenging in the region. It is, therefore, necessary that there is widespread stakeholder participation in the SARCOF process. This is a major priority of the process as it provides mutually beneficial interface between the climate information and prediction services practitioners and those that need to apply the products across a wide spectrum of socio-economic sectors. The SARCOF process is continuing to transform into an effective and reliable source for climate information and prediction services in order to fully exploit their potential for enhancing multi-sectoral social and economic development. OBJECTIVES The main objective of SARCOF-14 is to develop a consensus climate outlook for October 2010 to March 2011 rainfall season for the SADC Member States. The forum will also discuss the potential impacts of the consensus seasonal climate outlook on other socio-economic sectors including food security, health, disaster risk management, water resources and hydropower management, among others. The forum will also review the October 2009 to March 2010 rainy season for the SADC region. PARTICIPANTS Participants to SARCOF-14 will include climate prediction experts from the national Meteorological/Hydrological Services (NMHSs) in the SADC region and climate scientists from universities, research institutions, as well as regional and international organizations engaged in climate modeling, prediction and applications for the region. Various regional and international governmental and non-governmental organizations and development partners are also expected to attend. Due to inadequacy of the necessary resources, the SADC Drought Monitoring Centre will not be in a position to fund those wishing to attend SARCOF-14. HOW TO ATTEND Those wishing to attend can express their intention to do so through completing the attached request-for-participation form and submitting it to the Meteorological Services of Zimbabwe not later than 14 August 2010. CO-OPERATING INSTITUTIONS Co-operating institutions include all SADC National Meteorological and Hydrological Services, the IGAD Climate Prediction and Application Centre; African Centre of Meteorological Applications for Development (ACMAD); International Research Institute for Climate and Society; World Meteorological Organization; Food and Agricultural Organization, Famines Early Warning; World Health Organization; of Coordination of Humanitarian Assistance; European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts; National Oceanic and Atmosphere Administration; the United Kingdom Meteorological Office; and others. WORKING LANGUAGE English will be the working language for the Forum.

August 2010
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