World Meteorological Organization Flood Forecasting Initiative
Floods are without doubt the most devastating natural disasters, striking numerous regions in the world each year. During the last decades the trend in flood damages has been growing exponentially. This is a consequence of the increasing frequency of heavy rain, changes in upstream land-use and a continuously increasing concentration of population and assets in flood prone areas. In general, less developed countries are the most vulnerable to floods, causing damages that significantly affect the national GDP. At country and community levels important initiatives have and are being devoted to implement appropriate countermeasures, both structural and non-structural, aiming to alleviate the persistent threats of water-related disasters. Flood Forecasting (FF) forms an important tool in reducing vulnerabilities and flood risk and form an important ingredient of the strategy to "live with floods", thereby contributing to national sustainable development.