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GCOS/GTOS/WCRP Terrestrial Observation Panel for Climate, TOPC-15 session

GTOS and the GCOS jointly operate the Terrestrial Observation Panel for Climate, TOPC. The TOPC focuses on the identification of terrestrial observation requirements, assisting the establishment of observing networks for climate, providing guidance on observation standards and norms, facilitating access to climate data and information and its assimilation, and promoting climate studies and assessments.

In order to assess and monitor the adequacy of in-situ observation networks as well as satellite-based observing systems, in 2003 the second report on the adequacy of the current climate observing system was presented to the Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. This document identified the needs of the current climate observing system.

The 15th session of the TOPC, held 6 - 7 March 2013 at WMO Headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland on invitation by the GCOS Secretariat. At the start of the meeting the chairmanship was handed over from Han Dolman (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam) to Konrad Steffen (Swiss Federal Institute of Technology). Representatives from a number of global observing networks attended and presented the status on their networks including the Global Terrestrial Network for River Discharge (GTN-R) that was presented by the Head of the GRDC who is a TOPC panel member since 2007.

Further discussion was held on the updating process of the GCOS Implementation plan and the preparation of the Third Adequacy Report to be published in 2016. Both documents should be submitted for approval in 2015 to SBSTA 43 at COP21 (Conference of Parties in support of the UNFCCC).

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