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EUMETSAT and the dust cover of the first history eChapter selector GavaghanCommunications

Meteorology, Meteorological, History

An IGO
monit-
oring
weather and
climate
change

HISTORY OF EUMETSAT, p94.

HISTORY OF EUMETSAT, p90.


p93 (from page 90)

Chapter 8

In conclusion


By the end of 1992, EUMETSATs Council and Secretariat had assembled the major building blocks to construct the Organisation as it is today. The Council had adopted or opened for voting the significant Resolutions that are the foundation of EUMETSATs policy and programmes.

During the first six years, the Council's and Secretariat's tasks were threefold. First, EUMETSAT had to decide how it would conduct its business. This required the Organisation to examine how power should be shared between the centre, represented by the Council, and the individual Member States. The power dynamics of the Organisation were worked out in the context of discussions about amendments to the Convention and the design of the ground segment. Much of what was discussed about voting procedures and their relationship to national sovereignty were issues that are again uppermost in European intergovernmental discussions, this time in the context of expanding the European Union.

Secondly, and in parallel, EUMETSAT needed to decide how it would accomplish its tasks. Would it remain a modest body supported by a small Secretariat that collected money from the National Meteorological Services and passed the cash to the European Space Agency (ESA) in return for agreed programmes? Or would it become what it is today, a hands-on satellite operator with the technical expertise to determine for itself exactly what it wanted to achieve and how? The European taxpayers' money could be spent either by ESA on EUMETSATs behalf and with advice from EUMETSAT, or by EUMETSAT itself.

From a political perspective a significant question in this context was, which option would be the more cost-effective? There was apparent merit in paying ESA to develop programmes because the Agency had the necessary space-based expertise, facilities to operate satellites and a large organisational infrastructure in place which included programme boards that would give meteorologists an opportunity to influence programme content.

But before cost effectiveness can be evaluated,


SEE ALSO| |

1. Meteorologists shed political shackles, a review of Declan Murphy's history of the first 25 years of EUMETSAT (2011), by Helen Gavaghan.


2. An interview in 2010 with Dr Tillman Mohr, a special advisor to the secretary general of the World Meteorological Organisation, in Science, People & Politics.

eChapter| |TOP

Contents

Preface

Foreword

Introduction

Ch.1

Ch.2

Ch.3

Ch.4

Ch.5

Ch.6

Ch.7

Ch.8

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Eumetsat meteorology meteorological artificial satellites
European Space Agency weather climate policy politics history

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