Tackling the challenges behind global climate change

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African ministers have gathered in Cabo Verde for the Third Session of the African Ministerial Conference on Meteorology (AMCOMET) to discuss ways to reduce the devastating effects of climate change.

“The recent devastating flooding in many parts of Africa, particularly Southern Africa, has highlighted once again how weather-related hazards undermine and disrupt social, political and economic development,” said Hon Saviour Kasukuwere, Minister of Environment, Water and Climate of Zimbabwe and the outgoing Chair of AMCOMET.

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The conference seeks to discuss and develop ways to improve weather and climate services in order to deal with severe weather hazards on the continent.

“National Meteorological and Hydrological Services are critical actors in supporting sustainable development. There is today increased awareness of the socioeconomic benefits delivered by weather and climate services,” said World Meteorological Organization (WMO) Secretary-General Michel Jarraud.

Extreme weather and climate affects things like: food security, water management, health and key economic sectors.

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Discussion points at the conference include the Integrated African Strategy on Meteorology and approving a new regional climate centre for Central Africa for research and forecasting capabilities. The ministers will also consider contribution from the meteorological community to a pan-African Space Policy and Strategy.

“Knowledge, research and innovation are all vital to the competitiveness of the African economy and to allow us to meet weather, water and energy challenges,” said Dr. Antero Veiga, Minister for Environment, Housing and Territorial Planning

The African Ministerial Conference on Meteorology will take place from 10 to 14 February.