BAMOS Vol 30 No. 4 2017 | Page 4

4 BAMOS Dec 2017 June 2017 President’s report Summer, summer rains, forecasts and conferences As I write, the weather across much of Australia transitions to summer and, according to some northern indigenous communities, to Wakaringding, the first rains. In southeastern Australia, a significant weather system recently brought rainfall totals in excess of 200 mm to areas of northeastern Victoria, southeastern New South Wales, and southeastern Queensland. Such falls at this time of year cause significant problems to crops ready to harvest. Two official Bureau of Meteorology forecasts were useful for planning for this event. The first was the Weather and Climate Outlook, which indicated wetter than average for southeast Australia, extending up into southwest Queensland for the month of December. The second was the daily update weather forecasts leading up to the event. I was in Yarrawonga in the days preceding the event, and it was good to see the whole community alert to the forecasts and using them to accelerate harvesting of some crops and get the grains into the silos before ripe ears got too wet, and even potentially started sprouting. How different to several decades ago, when the accuracy, and hence utility, of such forecasts would have been much lower. Our AMOS community can be proud of our contributions to these improvements, based on decades of dedicated work. With short-term and seasonal forecasts improving, we now hear calls from water planners hoping for decadal prediction to become a reality in the future (seamless prediction over many timescales). As we have seen before, what seems at first like slim prospects can slowly turn to results with dedicated work. There is still much for our communities to do in researching and developing prediction capability on these short to intermediate timescales. The organising committee for AMOS-ICSHMO 2018 in Sydney next February has been doing a wonderful job putting together a great programme, including interesting side events. Registrants from all over the Southern Hemisphere and beyond herald an exciting week. If you haven’t yet registered to attend, full and one-day registrations are still available. I am sure the challenges and excitement of research combined with translating research results into useful services for the Australian community drive much of the work done in AMOS communities and that will continue in 2018. I would like to wish all AMOS members a happy and safe festive season and all the best for 2018—looking forward to meeting you all in Sydney in February. Mary Voice, December 2017