‘Tech key for strengthening climate early warning systems’

Technology plays a crucial role in enhancing risk knowledge, strengthening early warning systems, and informing climate development and investment policies, particularly in vulnerable regions, experts say.

As climate change increases the frequency and intensity of extreme weather events around the world, early warning systems can save lives and livelihoods.

Experts say cutting-edge technology like artificial intelligence, remote sensors and satellites can be used to analyse data, predict extreme weather events, and provide targeted alerts for communities at risk, among other things.

Early warning systems will be greatly boosted by artificial intelligence, says UN Climate Change Executive Secretary Simon Stiell.

“AI can offer remarkably precise foresight on imminent climate impacts and disasters,” he said at a recent meeting on climate and AI. “This could be instrumental in helping countries and communities prepare – providing real time information that saves lives and livelihoods on a massive scale. As we fight for an equitable and just transition, we need to make sure that these technologies are accessible to all.”

During the technology side-event, UN Climate Change Senior Director Daniele Violetti emphasised that nearly 50 percent of countries have included early warning systems in their national climate plans (known as Nationally Determined Contributions or NDCs), and that one in four prioritise enhancing technology and innovation.

The June UN Climate Meetings in Bonn brought together experts to discuss how innovative technologies can boost risk-informed adaptation and climate resilience.

A side event on technology, convened during the June Meetings by the UNFCCC Technology Executive Committee and the UNEP Climate Technology Centre and Network, focused on scaling up early warning systems globally and supporting the UN Secretary-General’s Early Warnings for All initiative, which aims to ensure that by 2027 every person on Earth is protected by early warning systems.

The UNFCCC said location-based messaging, for example, can help communities receive targeted warnings directly on their phones, ensuring they have the information they need to protect people and livelihoods ahead of extreme weather events.

Similarly, real-time monitoring can empower residents to take swift community action and build resilience.

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