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HOUSTON (KIAH) — Could you imagine not being able to click open an app on your phone to get the weather? Or perhaps not having a seven-day forecast?

Before today’s technology you’d have to read wind patterns for weeks if you wanted to know whether it was going to be an umbrella or a jacket kind of day. That’s why, on March 23, we celebrate the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), an international organization that collects data from all over the world to help us better understand the weather and its impact on our lives.


Weather, climate and water extremes are becoming more frequent and intense as a result of climate change. More people are exposed than ever before to multiple hazards.

Forecasts of what the weather will be are no longer enough. Impact-based forecasts on what the weather will do and what people should do are vital to save lives and livelihoods. 

That means that instead of telling you that the wind is going to be 50 MPH, they’ll say in addition to that, there’s the possibility of roof damage or medium sized tree limbs that can be broken down. This helps people to better understand what they can look for in these type of conditions.

Meteorologist James Douris- WMO Disaster Risk Reduction Department

According to the WMO one in three people are still not adequately covered by early warning systems. And, all too often, the warnings do not reach those who need them most.

World Meteorological Day this year has a theme of Early Warning and Early Action, which focuses on the importance of transfer of water and energy between the land surface and the lower atmosphere and climate information for disaster risk reduction.

Douris was also very generous and shared his latest publication on Mortality and Economic Losses from Weather, Climate and Water Extremes. Meteorologist Star Harvey spent her Wednesday morning down at the Office of Emergency Management (EOM) in Galveston County. She had the opportunity to interview Scott Tafuri, the Emergency Management Coordinator at the OEM. Tafuri talked about the damage to some coastal communities in Texas from Tuesday’s powerful storms, and also the importance of preparedness ahead of severe weather season in southeast Texas. Here’s a look: