Capital Project for CF Weather and Oceanographic Service Complete

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cfwosremote-briefing-capability-equipment

A project to equip CAF meteorological technicians with new tools and infrastructure is now complete.

Major-General Paul Wynnyk, Commander Canadian Forces Intelligence Command (CFINTCOM), announced on May 18 that the CF Weather and Oceanographic Service (CFWOS) Transformation Capital Project has reached full operational capability (FOC).

The CFWOS Transformation Capital Project, initiated in 2007, created a more efficient national weather service operation to address a number of military weather program issues, including:

  • A growing shortage in the number of weather briefer-qualified Meteorological Technicians (Met Techs);
  • Gaps created in the 24/7 operations of meteorological sections at wings and bases when Met Techs are deployed on operations;
  • The need for a team of dedicated personnel to modernize forecast services; and
  • The need for Environment and Climate Change Canada and CAF weather personnel to be co-located for effective transfer of scientific and operational knowledge.

This was accomplished in conjunction with the Met Tech Military Employment Structure Implementation Plan (MESIP), which restructured training and employment for this occupation.

“The CF Weather and Oceanographic Service is now at full operational capability, which further enables this program to reach an increased number of CAF operators with mission or task-focused weather information,” said MGen Wynnyk. “Weather; be it on land, air or sea, is an important consideration during all phases of military planning, and CFWOS ensures that timely and precise data will always be available to those who need it most.”

The creation of the Joint Meteorological Centre (JMC) in 2013 at 5th Canadian Division Support Base Gagetown and the establishment of a national remote weather briefing program were key elements of the CFWOS Transformation Capital Project. Meteorological and Oceanographic Centres at CFBs Esquimalt and Halifax were also modernized to enable them to be key providers of the national CFWOS program, with a focus on maritime meteorology and oceanography. These three offices now provide to CAF operators and planners daily weather information tailored to their needs, using departmental computer and phone networks.

This project showcases a number of Defence Renewal themes, as it represents a major change in the business processes for weather support. In the past, only bases or wings with embedded Met Techs could get mission-focused weather information, but now everyone across the Defence Team can use the Request For Service form on the CF Weather Office website to acquire detailed and timely weather information. This national remote service was accomplished with existing resources, while reducing some staffing throughout the country due to the availability of 24/7 remote support from the JMC, with deployed support when required for major exercises. The new Operational Liaison team and Applied Development Cell at the JMC provide the capacity for continuous improvement in the military weather program which is also a cornerstone of Defence Renewal.

The CFWOS Transformation Capital Project was sponsored by CFINTCOM and implemented by Assistant Deputy Minister (Information Management). With the signing of the FOC certificate by CFINTCOM and ADM(IM) representatives , the capability is now officially delivered to CFINTCOM.

“Accurate and reliable weather services being critical to the success of CAF operations, I am pleased that the IM Group could help provide Met Techs with the tools necessary to standardize and transform their operations,”  said Len Bastien, ADM(IM).

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