Southern Africa Development Community (SADC), through the Climate Services Centre, is organising the Seventeenth Southern Africa Regional Climate Outlook Forum (SARCOF-17), in Harare, Zimbabwe, 28-30 August 2013. SARCOF-17 is a collaborative effort between the SADC Climate Services Centre, SADC DRR Unit, World Meteorological Organization (WMO), Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO), International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (ISDR), United States Agency for International Development (USAID), and other partners. SARCOF-17 is preceded by a 9-day Climate Experts Capacity Building Workshop of SADC National Meteorological/Hydrological Services (NMHSs) only, for the purposes of developing the 2013/14 seasonal climate forecast.
Proper interpretation of seasonal climate forecasts and their application across various socio-economic decision-making processes still remains a challenge 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 practitioners of climate information and prediction services and partners 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 of climate information and prediction services in order to fully exploit their potential for enhancing multi-sectoral, social and economic development.
Advancing Adaptation to Impacts of Climate Variability through Application of Climate Information and Prediction Services for Sustainable Development
The main objective of SARCOF-17 is to develop a consensus climate outlook for period October 2013 to March 2014 which is the upcoming 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 disaster risk management, food security, health, water resources and hydropower management, among others. The forum will also review the October 2012 to March 2013 rainy season for the SADC region.
Participants to SARCOF-17 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 Climate Services Centre will not be in a position to fund those wishing to attend SARCOF-17.
Those wishing to attend can express their intention to do so through completing the attached request-for-participation form and submitting it to the Zimbabwe Meteorological Services not later than 23 August 2013.
Co-operating institutions include all SADC National Meteorological and Hydrological Services, the African Development Bank (AfDB), the IGAD Climate Prediction and Application Centre (ICPAC); African Centre of Meteorological Applications for Development (ACMAD); International Research Institute for Climate and Society (IRI); United Nations Development Programme (UNDP); United Nations / International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UN/ISDR) World Meteorological Organization (WMO); Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO), ; Office of Coordination of Humanitarian Assistance (OCHA); European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF); National Oceanic and Atmosphere Administration (NOAA); the United Kingdom Meteorological Office (UKMET); and others.
English will be the working language for the Forum.