Today, March 23, 71 years ago, specifically in 1950, the agreement for the creation of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) entered into force, functioning as the United Nations body focused on international cooperation in meteorological matters, establishing this day as commemorative date to celebrate World Meteorological Day, in order to better understand the world in which we live and the climatic phenomena that have been increasing over the years such as hurricanes, electrical storms, floods, among others.
More than 180 are the member states that make up the WMO, celebrating this day each year and focusing on a different topic of interest. The theme chosen for this 2021 was “The ocean, our climate and weather”.
The oceans cover approximately 70% of the Earth’s surface, which makes them one of the main determinants of climate and weather on the planet. Researchers around the globe systematically monitor the oceans and their evolution to study the effects that they may have on the atmosphere, given that the impact of climate change is currently increasing, with more observations being carried out, ocean research and services.
At the same time, this year begins the United Nations Decade of Ocean Sciences for Sustainable Development, the Ocean Decade (2021-2030), whose purpose is to promote transformative ideas that allow oceanography to become a source that supports sustainable development of the oceans.
Because climate change greatly affects water, this year, both World Water Day (March 22) and World Meteorological Day are dedicated to climate and ocean studies.
“Changes in the global distribution of rainfall are having a major impact in many countries. Sea levels are rising at an ever-increasing rate due to the melting of the largest glaciers, such as those in Greenland and Antarctica. This is exposing coastal areas and islands to a greater risk of flooding and submergence of low-lying areas” explained Petteri Taalas, WMO Secretary-General.
It is relevant to maintain studies and research on our oceans since they not only affect themselves, but also our climate and therefore, us and our planet.