11 Aug 2014

Global cooperation essential for Pacific weather services

11:06 am on 11 August 2014

The World Meteorological Organisation says global cooperation is essential to improve weather services for small island states.

In the Pacific, extreme climate conditions account for 76 percent of all disasters, with 50 percent directly related to cyclones.

A mudslide in Gataivai, American Samoa

A mudslide in Gataivai, American Samoa Photo: RNZI / Monica Miller

The organisation's Secretary-General, Michel Jarraud, says the weather in the Pacific is influenced by global conditions and can be predicted.

He says that during next month's Small Islands Developing States conference in Samoa, the WMO will push for greater cooperation between nations.

"Global cooperation is absolutely essential. We have to make sure the observation systems are strengthened in all these places but also that all the countries, the small islands, can benefit - that they can get the observation from other countries, predictions, warnings, advice from other countries."

Michel Jarraud says improved communications, infrastructure and better use of forecast information is also needed.