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International Collaboration Within the United Nations Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space: Framework for International Space Weather Services (2018–2030)

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  • Severe space weather is a global threat that requires a coordinated global response. In this Commentary, we review some previous successful actions supporting international coordination between member states in the United Nations (UN) context and make recommendations for a future approach. Member states of the UN Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (COPUOS) recently approved new guidelines related to space weather under actions for the long‐term sustainability of outer space activities. This is to be followed by UN Conference on the Exploration and Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (UNISPACE)+50, which will take place in June 2018 on the occasion of the fiftieth anniversary of the first UNISPACE I held in Vienna in 1968. Expanded international coordination has been proposed within COPUOS under the UNISPACE+50 process, where priorities for 2018–2030 are to be defined under Thematic Priority 4: Framework for International Space Weather Services. The COPUOS expert group for space weather has proposed the creation of a new International Coordination Group for Space Weather be implemented as part of this thematic priority. This coordination group would lead international coordination between member states and across international stakeholders, monitor progress against implementation of guidelines and best practices, and promote coordinated global efforts in the space weather ecosystem spanning observations, research, modeling, and validation, with the goal of improved space weather services. We argue that such improved coordination at the international policy level is essential for increasing global resiliency against the threats arising from severe space weather.

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    Article (Published)
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    Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International