World Meteorological Organization

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The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations and is the UN’s authoritative voice on the state and behavior of the Earth’s atmosphere, its interactions with the oceans, the climate it produces and the resulting distribution of water resources.

The WMO is a founding organization of the IPCC.


Established in 1950, the WMO originated from the International Meteorological Organization (IMO), which was founded in 1873. The WMO became the UN’s specialized agency for weather, climate, operational hydrology and related geophysical sciences in 1951.

As of April 2007, WMO has a membership of 188 Member States and Territories.[1]

World Climate Conferences

The WMO has organized two world climate conferences in the past four decades and is currently planning a third.[2]

First World Climate Conference

The First World Climate Conference, organized in 1979, influenced the establishment of a number of important international scientific initiatives, such as the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (co-sponsored by the WMO and the United Nations Environment Programme), the WMO World Climate Programme and the World Climate Research Programme (co-sponsored by WMO, the International Council for Science and the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of the United Nations Educations, Scientific and Cultural Organization).[2]

Second World Climate Conference

The Second World Climate Conference called for the establishment of a climate convention, adding momentum to international efforts that resulted in the development of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in 1992. It also led to the establishment of the Global Climate Observing System and to recommendations for future activities of the World Climate Programme.[2]

World Climate Conference-3

Fifteenth World Meteorological Congress (Geneva, Switzerland, May 2007) approved the organization of World Climate Conference-3, in collaboration with other UN system agencies and partners. The Conference aims to respond to the need of users and sectors worldwide to reduce natural disasters, enhance food security and adapt to climate variability and change as spelled out in the Bali Action Plan, the Nairobi Work Programme and the Hyogo Framework for Action on Disaster Risk Reduction. It is also expected to contribute to the 15th session of the Conference of Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC COP15) and initiatives to support adaptation to climate variability and change.[2]

World Climate Conference-3 (WCC-3) is planned for August 31 – September 4, 2009, in Geneva, Switzerland.[3]

Articles and Resources

Related SourceWatch articles


  1. “Members of the World Meteorological Organizaiton with date of ratification or accession,” World Meteorological Organization, April 5, 2007.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 “Vision and history,” World Meteorological Organization.
  3. “WCC-3 Final Brochure,” World Meteorological Organization.

External Articles