Ref# 2423
Global Framework for Climate Services (GFCS) for the SIDS: GFCS-SIDS
Partners
International Organizations: World Meteorological Organization (WMO), United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), Unuted Nations Development Programme (UNDP), World Health Organization (WHO), World Bank (WB), United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UNISDR), International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN)
• Collaborating Institutions and mechanisms in the Caribbean: Association of Caribbean States (ACS), Caribbean Meteorological Organization (CMO), Caribbean Institute for Meteorology and Hydrology (CIMH), Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA), the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (CCCCC).
• Collaborating Institutions and mechanisms in Pacific: Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP), University of the South Pacific (USP), UNDP Pacific Centre, NOAA
• Collaborating Institutions and mechanisms in the Indian Ocean: Indian Ocean Commission, The Regional Organizations (ROs) for Eastern and Southern Africa and Indian Ocean (ESA-IO)
Deliverables
Deliverable Date
Improvement of service delivery mechanisms to national, regional and international stakeholders. 2019
Enhancement of human and technical capacities at Regional Climate Centres and in National Meteorological and Hydrological Services in SIDS 2019
Increasing the range of products and services delivered to stakeholders 2019
Infrastructure development 2019
Resources
Type Details
In-kind contribution To be defined at a later stage
Financing (in USD)
Objective & Description
Small Island Developing States (SIDS) are particularly susceptible to hydro-meteorological hazards such as tropical cyclones (tropical storms and hurricanes), thunderstorms or lighting, coastal storm surges, floods, flash floods, coastal flooding, river flooding, drought, strong winds, heat waves, and dust or haze. The level of vulnerability of SIDS to weather and climate hazards has been demonstrated by the severity of impacts over recent years due mainly to tropical storms but also impacts of prolonged heavy rainfall, droughts and floods.

Climate change will likely increase the frequency and/or severity of weather and climate hazards. Climate change through slow onset processes will also simultaneously increase communities vulnerability to natural hazards due to the combined effects of sea-level rise, ecosystem degradation, reduced availability of water for ecosystems and agriculture, and changes in peoples livelihoods.

Climate products and services at the regional and sub-regional scales can play an important role in adapting to climate variability and change and supporting climate-sensitive sectors. The need of adapting to climate change and supporting climate-sensitive sectors (e.g. fisheries, tourism) in SIDS will require the development of information products and services based on climate predictions.

Managing weather and climate-sensitive sectors is enhanced through access to critical climate information from the past and the present, and through anticipation of future climate. Integration of climate information into decision-making in all sectors of society would foster more effective climate risk management strategies in support of the achievement of economic and development objectives, including the Millennium Development Goals.

Launched in 2009, the Global Framework for Climate Services is a global partnership of governments and organizations that produce and use climate information and services. GFCS aims to enable society to manage better the risk and opportunities arising from climate variability and change especially for those who are the most vulnerable to climate related hazards by developing and incorporating science-based climate information into planning, policy and practice.

Leaders of SIDS have stated clearly that they want partnerships to be a cornerstone of the 2014 SIDS Conference. They have called for the strengthening of collaborative partnerships between SIDS and the international community¯ as one of the important ways and means to address new and emerging challenges and opportunities for the sustainable development of SIDS.

Implementing the GFCS in SIDS and SIDS Regions is therefore a long-term cooperative arrangement through which the SIDS and various international, regional and national institutions together with stakeholders will work together to achieve a new paradigm in provision of Weather and Climate Services for sustainable development.

Scientific advances in seasonal to multi-decadal prediction, increasing political sensitivity and the awareness of a wide range of user communities of their vulnerability to climate variability and change make it essential to strengthen the provision of pertinent, tailored climate information. The challenge with regard to the provision of adequate and timely climate information and its appropriate use is twofold:

- Developing and enhancing systems for production and delivery of useable climate information, spanning global to local scales, on various timescales, and
- Ensuring an effective uptake of the information by decision-makers in different sectors.

GFCS is already supporting various countries around the world. For example, Belize, with the support of GCS, is in the process of establishing a climate services framework at national level to produce and use climate information and services including for the energy, tourism, citrus and sugar sectors.

Climate services can help managing the freshwater-ocean interface, including storm-surges and waves and coastal inundation forecasting. The WMO Associated Programme on Flood Management , which contributes to GFCS, focuses on the major water-related challenges in relation to water management including in the coastal zone.

A better understanding of climate and its impacts on coastal and oceanic fisheries is critical to the future management of these valuable resources for subsistence and market-based economies, and cultures. Developing countries and SIDS that depend heavily on fish for food and exports will also need special assistance in adapting to the effects of climate variability and change on oceanic fisheries. Climate services can play an important role for fisheries.

The World Meteorological Organization's (WMO) Commission for Agricultural Meteorology (CAgM) and the Joint WMO/IOC Technical Commission for Oceanography and Marine Meteorology (JCOMM) are committed to improving access to and use of weather and climate data and products relevant to fisheries management. Interdisciplinary cooperation is needed to advance science on climate-to-fish-to-fisheries. The WMO-led International Workshop on Climate and Oceanic Fisheries held in the Cook Islands in 2011 was organized to contribute to this process. Many of the Pacific Island countries and territories depend heavily on oceanic fisheries and need to rely on the assistance of interdisciplinary teams to plan the sustainable use of their fisheries resources.

As part of a Canada funded project which aims at enhancing capabilities of countries to understand, anticipate, prepare for and cope with the positive and negative impacts of climate variability and change, GFCS in partnership with the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) and key partners are organizing the Regional Consultation on Climate Services for SIDS in the Pacific from 31 March to 4 April 2014 in Rarotonga, Cook Islands . One of the main objectives will be to identify concrete actions to enable climate services in SIDS in the Pacific.

Under the GFCS, WMO will continue to work with UN and Regional partners to address these issues in SIDS.

Coordination Mechanisms:

The GFCS-SIDS is a UN-led initiative with governments spearheaded by WMO to guide the development and application of science-based climate information and services in support of decision-making for SIDS.

Close coordination will be ensured:
• with international partners through the GFCS Office which is based at WMO headquarters in Geneva and;
• with respective regional and country offices based in SIDS island states, meteorological offices, national institutions and sectors coordinated by WMO Permanent Representatives based in the regions.
Governance & Coordination Mechanisms
The GFCS-SIDS is a UN-led initiative with governments spearheaded by WMO to guide the development and application of science-based climate information and services in support of decision-making for SIDS.
Close coordination will be ensured:

- with international partners through the GFCS Office which is based at WMO headquarters in Geneva and;
- with respective regional and country offices based in SIDS island states, meteorological offices, national institutions and sectors coordinated by WMO Permanent Representatives based in the regions.
Implementation Methodologies
GFCS Regional and National consultations for climate services are being organized in the SIDS regions to bring together practitioners and decision-makers from government institutions, universities and the private sector to identify appropriate mechanisms and networks to improve and sustain the development and flow of climate information for different users at Regional and National level.

The GFCS Regional consultation for the Caribbean was held on 29-31 May 2013 in Port of Spain brought together regional stakeholders and discussed the challenges and opportunities related to implementing climate services in the region. Roughly 100 participants attended this meeting, representing various economic sectors. The participants collectively agreed on a common way forward, asking for national pilots to be initiated in Belize and the Dominican Republic, highlighting the need to promote climate research and the need to support the Caribbean Institute for Meteorology and Hydrology (CIMH) as a regional climate centre. As a follow-up, a national consultation for climate services was held in Belize on 30 October - 1 November 2013 that has developed a detailed action plan to enable climate services in the country.

In anticipation of the Third International Conference on Small Island Developing States, the upcoming Regional Consultation on Climate Services for SIDS (31 March - 4 April 2014, Rarotonga, Cook Islands), organized by WMO, SPREP and other partners, will represent a key opportunity to bring together the SIDS island countries together with collaborating Institutions and mechanisms in Pacific and cement the new SIDS partnership.

For this purpose, a second meeting is also being organized in April to bring together the SIDS from the other regions.

Arrangements for Capacity-Building and Technology Transfer:

The GFCS has a three prong implementation approach with global, regional and national focus. The global level provides climate prediction products and maintains standards, while the regional focus is on promoting capacity development beyond single nations through regional climate centres (RCC) and the national level focuses on tailoring information products to meet user demands in support of climate-smart solutions. Through this approach countries in need will have access to the latest products, methodologies and tools they can adapt to generate tailored climate services. Capacity development will underpin all the activities of the GFCS as it is recognized to be limited particularly in SIDS.
Arrangements for Capacity Building and Technology Transfer
The GFCS has a three prong implementation approach with global, regional and national focus. The global level provides climate prediction products and maintains standards, while the regional focus is on promoting capacity development beyond single nations through regional climate centres (RCC) and the national level focuses on tailoring information products to meet user demands in support of climate-smart solutions. Through this approach countries in need will have access to the latest products, methodologies and tools they can adapt to generate tailored climate services. Capacity development will underpin all the activities of the GFCS as it is recognized to be limited particularly in SIDS.
Copyright 2016 United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs