Zimbabwe hosting 17th Southern Africa Regional Climate Outlook Forum (SARCOF-17)

by Wallace Mawire

The Southern Africa Development Community (SADC), through the Climate Services Centre, is organizing the Seventeenth Southern Africa Regional Climate Outlook Forum (SARCOF-17), in Harare, Zimbabwe, on 29 to 30 August 2013, according to SADC Climate Services Centre (SCSC).

According to the SCSC, 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.

According to the SCSC, 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,” says a statement from the SCSC.

The SARCOF process is said to be 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.

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