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National Climate Observing System (GCOS Switzerland) (2007)
Comprehensive inventory of the climate variables observed in Switzerland
Switzerland has a long tradition of climate observation. Temperature and precipitation series of more than 150 years, the world’s longest total ozone series, glacier measurements dating back to the end of the 19th century and the 100-year anniversary of the Physical Meteorological Observatory Davos are only a few of the highlights of Switzerland’s contribution to global and regional climate monitoring.
The value of Swiss climate measurement series lies in their long-term continuity, systematic acquisition and remarkable quality. It should be borne in mind that if measurement series are interrupted, the loss of continuity is irrevocable. This report, prepared by the Swiss GCOS Office at the Federal Office of Meteorology and Climatology MeteoSwiss, provides, for the first time, a comprehensive overview of the most valuable long series of essential climate variables. For each variable, the report identifies any gaps regarding the legal basis, definition of responsibilities or availability of financial resources for the continuation of observations.
There is a clear need for action with regard to the cryosphere observations (glaciers, permafrost, snow): there is no legal basis and consequently, the funding of measurement series is not assured in the long term. In addition, funding is required for the CO2 measurement series on the Jungfraujoch, for observations of lakes and phenology, and for three international data centres in Switzerland. The presented long-term measurement series of the National Climate Observing System (GCOS Switzerland) are crucial to our understanding of climate change, and for the planning and implementation of appropriate measures.
Seiz, G., Foppa, N., 2007. National Climate Observing System (GCOS Switzerland). Publication by MeteoSwiss and ProClim, 92 S.
This report is available in English, German and French.