New H2020 FOCUS-Africa project aims to develop tailored climate services in Southern Africa

We were delighted to be part of a high-energy kick-off meeting this September launching the new FOCUS-Africa H2020 project, a 48-month, €7 million initiative funded by the European Commission.

FOCUS-Africa – Fully Optimized User Centric Climate Services Value Chain for Southern Africa – is led by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and involves 20 partners, 10 from Africa and 10 from Europe, including WEMC and building further on our relationship with the WMO since our joint signing of a Memorandum of Understanding to make climate and weather information and knowledge more readily available for the energy sector.

Project partners also include the Met Office, EDF, Barcelona Supercomputing Centre, the African Centre of Meteorological Application Development, Amigo Climate, the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg and the University of Cape Town.

Roberta Boscolo, Project Co-ordinator and WMO Science Officer, described the September launch as ‘the sunrise’ of the Project.

FOCUS-Africa aims to deliver tailored climate services in the SADC region in four key sectors agriculture and food security, water, energy and infrastructure.

The full value chain for climate services will be demonstrated through eight pilot case studies in six countries, which will involve a wide range of end-users and beneficiaries. WEMC are thrilled to be Service Providers for two of the energy-related case studies. More recently we were part of the C3S Energy project developing an operational climate service for the energy sector. A key aspect of this work was the consultation and service co-design with the energy industry with two case studies also used to illustrate the added value of the products to minimize operational costs.

Alberto Troccoli, WEMC Founder and Director, said: “Projects are at the core of WEMC work and we are proud to be one of the FOCUS-Africa partners, leading the development of tailored climate services and contributing to their exploitation later in the project, providing expertise in stakeholder engagement and supporting the overall project management.”

We have a strong track record in project communications, for example in recent months leading communications in the H2020 SECLI-FIRM project – The added value of seasonal climate forecasting for integrated risk management, leading the Copernicus C3S Energy project and organising the annual International Energy and Meteorology events (ICEM).

We look forward to collaborating with partners to achieve the FOCUS-Africa aims, that very much echo the values of WEMC, to help ensure scientific learning can be applied to practical solutions for industry.

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