The GAW Urban Research Meteorology and Environment (GURME) project

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The GAW Urban Research Meteorology and Environment (GURME) project

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Guide to Integrated Urban Weather Environment Climate Services is available here.

New Announcement

  • AGU Fall Meeting, Session A109: Urban and regional air quality: Emissions, land surface forcing, and meteorological impacts, 10-14 December, Washington DC
  • 10th International Conference on Urban Climate (ICUC10) / 14th Symposium on the Urban Environment (SUE), August 6-10, 2018, New York, USA (link)
  • GAW Leaflet on ‘Air Quality Products and Services from the Global to Urban Scales’ (link)
  • Video clip on WMO contribution to Air Quality research and services (link)
  • SAFAR Video: WMO GURME SAFAR project video on System of Air Quality Forecasting and Research (SAFAR - for Indian cities): (link)



 The WMO GAW Urban Research Meteorology and Environment (GURME) project was recently started in response to the requests of the National Meteorological and Hydrological Services (NMHSs). The lead responsibility for the programme rests with the Scientific Advisory Group for GURME. NMHSs have an important role to play in the study and management of urban environment because they collect information and have capabilities that are essential to the forecasting of urban air pollution and the evaluation of the effects of different emission control strategies. The WMO established GURME as a mean to help enhance the capabilities of NMHSs to handle meteorological and related aspects of urban pollution. GURME is designed to do this through co-ordination and focussing of present activities, as well as initiation of new ones. More details about the GURME programme can be found at the GURME web site. Please visit: Here



 GURME is an integral part of urban research and services, and its activities include:

  • defining meteorologial and air quality measurements that support urban forecasting
  • providing cities access to air quality numerical prediction systems and monitoring information which serve as the basis for health-related prediction services, and
  • promoting city pilot projects for different cities to demonstrate successful expansion of MeteoServices for urban environment issues.

 Go to GURME website for list of projects.

 The GURME project arose in response to the requests for assistance by many National Meteorological Services (NMSs) dealing with urban issues, and in recognition that the management of urban environments requires special attention. The genesis of the project began in the Twelfth World Meteorological Congress (1995) where it was determined that meteorological and climatological aspects of urban environments should receive increased attention within WMO programmes. In response, the Executive Council added the field of the urban atmospheric environment to the terms of reference of the EC Panel of Experts/CAS Working Group on Environmental Pollution and Atmospheric Chemistry. A meeting of Experts on Atmospheric Urban Pollution and the Role of the National Meteorological Services was convened in Geneva in October 1996 to help define issues and needs and to plan for future WMO activities related to urban environments.


GURME SAG Objectives

 The GURME SAG continues to focus on the development of models and associated research activities to enhance the capabilities of the NMHSs in providing urban-environmental forecasting and air quality services of high quality, illustrating the linkages between meteorology and air quality. In support of WMO’s integrated urban services initiative and the creation of the SAG-Apps, the GURME SAG’s focus is now centered on models and applications applicable to describe the urban environment and how these environments interact with the regional and global scales. Activities within GURME will expand beyond its experience and strengths in air quality to a broader coordination and facilitation of integrated forecasting projects for the urban environment where the health of citizens is the main driver.




 The main objective of the SAG-Apps is to develop a portfolio of modelling products and services related to atmospheric composition, and more specifically to demonstrate the usefulness of exchanging chemical observational data in Near-Real-Time in support of monitoring and forecasting applications. The rationale of forming the SAG-Apps is WMO’s strategy to provide advice and support to the meteorological institutions to broaden their services and products from conventional weather forecast to services that include aspects of the atmospheric environment. The vision is that development of a portfolio of demonstration projects (i.e. designing concepts, endorsing initiatives, stimulating communities to develop these projects) will provide the necessary impetus to speed up the emergence and expansion of such services. These developments will not only benefit NRT applications, but also provide a closer link to assessment activities, such as they are currently performed under the TF HTAP and partner organizations in the health (e.g., WHO), agriculture/vegetation (e.g., CLRTAP) and climate communities (e.g. CCMI).


Specific Activities

GURME-1. Address the research barriers to advance the predictive capacity at increasing resolutions, and in the urban context in particular: through the coordination of reviews in the current state of science in urban-scale forecasting and associated monitoring, establish activities where gaps exist;
GURME-2. Develop activities on those research questions/issues that transcend disciplines and require leveraging a broader community to develop improved forecasting concepts and tools to resolve complex urban environments at increasing scales; facilitate data sharing and establishment of test beds;
GURME-3. Given the integrative nature of modeling, the on-going scientific trend towards seamless predictions and the evolution of technology, actively engage other WMO advisory and working groups within WWRP, GAW and the rest of its organisation, to address this complex and multidisciplinary challenge;
GURME-4. While megacities will continue to receive particular attention, orient its research to cover the full array of urban environments that are key to the broader scientific question of urban-scale modelling;
GURME-5. Collaborate explicitly with the SAG-Apps on projects at the interface of regional and local scales and contribute actively to facilitating data assimilation efforts focused on integrated/coupled models and at finer and finer scales;
GURME-6. Continue to nurture its engagement with the health community as the main partner in assessing the needs, evaluating the benefits and communicating resulting services to society within these urban environments;
GURME-7. Build capacity through its research projects, identifying those environments that constitute gaps in the overall directions of the GURME program and encourage in its projects the development and testing of derived services. The products themselves would take the form of forecasts, alerts and warnings and/or real-time/NRT maps or databases; and
GURME-8. Forge stronger collaborations with CBS and/or individual operational centres to transition products in dissemination systems in a form that is well suited for large or targeted audiences.

 GURME Strategic Plan


GURME Pilot Projects

India Commonwealth Games GURME Pilot Project SAFAR

The Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM), Pune, is spearheading the country's first major initiative named a "System of Air Quality Forecasting and Research (SAFAR)", which was successfully tested during the commonwealth Games 2010 for National Capital Region Delhi. The vision is to spread the SAFAR to other major cities in India. 

PROMOTE Project - Project of the Air Pollution and Human Health Programme (supported by NERC, MOES, DBT, MRC and Newton Fund). Process analysis, observations and modelling Integrated solutions for cleaner air in Delhi, India

Mexico City GURME Pilot Project

Chilean Cities GURME Pilot Project

Shanghai Multi Hazards Early Warning System

Study of Urban-Impacts on Rainfall and Fog/Haze (SURF project)

See more projects here

WMO and GURME on the UN HABITAT-III Conference


Urbanization and Megacities: Impact Based Forecasts and Risk Based Warnings

Integrated Urban Weather, Water, Environment and Climate Services: 

A priority of WMO is to enhance the capabilities of National Meteorological and Hydrology Services in conducting research and providing services for cities to deal with weather, water, climate and environmental problems.

See more information here

Multiple hazards in urban areas

  • Poor air quality
  • Extreme heat/cold weather and human thermal stress
  • Hurricanes, typhoons, extreme local winds
  • Flooding
  • Sea-level rise due to climate change
  • Energy and water sustainability
  • Public health issues caused by the above
  • Climate change: 70% of greenhouse gas emissions from urban areas.

WMO Expert Task Team for writing the Guide for Urban Weather, Environment and Climate Services

WMO and the New UN Urban Agenda

From Urban Meteorology, Climate and Environment Research to Integrated City Services


Past Meetings, Workshops and Training Schools

See more events here

and the earliest: Here


GURME Reports and Publications

See more here

Urban-scale environmental prediction systems. Chapter 18 in the WWOSC Book Seamless Prediction of the: Earth System: from Minutes to Months, (G Brunet, S Jones, PM Ruti Eds.), (WMO-No. 1156), (ISBN 978-92-63-11156-2), Geneva, pp. 347-370, 2015 Web-link:

228. WMO Global Atmosphere Watch (GAW) Implementation Plan: 2016-2023

226. Coupled Chemistry-Meteorology/ Climate Modelling (CCMM): status and relevance for numerical weather prediction, atmospheric pollution and climate research (Geneva, Switzerland, 23-25 February 2015) ( WMO-No. 1172; WCRP Report No. 9/2016), 165 pp. May 2016

217. System of Air Quality Forecasting and Research (SAFAR - India), 60 pp. June 2015

208. WMO GURME Workshop on Urban Meteorological Observation Design, Shanghai, China, 11-14 December 2011

205. WMO/IGAC Impacts of Megacities on Air Pollution and Climate (Lead authors: Tong Zhu, Megan L. Melamed, David Parrish, Michael Gauss, Laura Gallardo Klenner, Mark Lawrence, Abdourahamane Konare and Cathy Liousse), ISBN: 978-0-9882867-0-2, 309 pp. September 2012

197. Addendum for the Period 2012-2015 to the WMO Global Atmosphere Watch (GAW) Strategic Plan 2008-2015, 57 pp. May 2011.

189. Report of the MACC/GAW Session on the Near-Real-Time Delivery of the GAW Observations of Reactive Gases (Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany, 6-8 October 2009), (WMO TD No. 1527), 31 pp, August 2010

187. Joint Report of COST Action 728 and GURME – Review of the Capabilities of Meteorological and Chemistry-Transport Models for Describing and Predicting Air Pollution Episodes (ISBN 978-1-905313-77-8) (WMO TD No. 1502), 69 pp, electronic version - July 2009

181. Joint Report of COST Action 728 and GURME. Overview of Tools and Methods for Meteorological and Air Pollution Mesoscale Model Evaluation and User Training (WMO TD No. 1457), 121 pp, November 2008