Zim hosts regional climate indaba

Zimbabwe will from tomorrow play host to the 17th Southern African Regional Climate Outlook Forum that is set to bring together climate forecast experts and other related scientists in the SADC.

The event will be held under the theme “Advancing Adaptation to Impacts of Climate Variability through Application of Climate Information and Prediction Services for Sustainable Development.”

According to an official statement issued by the Zimbabwe Meteorological Services, the gathering will also bring scientists from research institutions and universities across the region and beyond.

The department said the event is being organised by SADC.

“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 statement said.

It added: “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.”

The Southern African region has for the past few decades been blighted by a series of devastating droughts that have threatened socio-economic and political stability, mostly blamed on climate change.

SARCOF-17 said its main objective 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,” the climate watchdog said.

Zimbabwe is also currently co-hosting the United Nations World Tourism Organisation summit with Zambia.

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