Emergency Response Activities (ERA)

The Emergency Response Activities (ERA) Programme was established to assist National Meteorological and Hydrological Services (NMHSs), their respective national agencies and relevant international organizations to respond effectively to environmental emergencies relevant to transport and dispersion of airborne hazardous substances. Following the Chernobyl nuclear power plant accident in 1986, the ERA Programme focused its operational arrangements and support on nuclear facility accidents.  WMO has operational international arrangements in place with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).  The Programme has been expended to include emergency response for non-nuclear environmental emergencies, such as the dispersion of smoke from large fires, ash and other emissions from volcanic eruptions, and chemical releases from industrial accidents. Furthermore, through the WMO Technical Commissions, there is focus in providing support to NMHS involved in response to marine environmental emergencies, which consider transport and dispersion modelling of pollutants (including nuclear) in the ocean. More information is at Marine Environmental Emergency Response (MEER)

The Programme uses and applies specialized atmospheric transport and dispersion modelling (ATDM) techniques to track and predict the spread of airborne hazardous substances in the event of an environmental emergency. Designated Centres of WMO Integrated Processing and Prediction System (WIPPS) conducting both nuclear and non-nuclear environmental emergency response implement and maintain ATDMs to provide the minimum set of ATDM products.

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