Weather is an ever-present part of daily life, and decisions large and small revolve around what the weather is doing and is going to do. The stakes may be fairly low – getting caught in the rain without an umbrella – or extremely high. Hazardous weather conditions can make the transportation of goods and people unsafe, and can put property, livelihoods and lives at risk. Advanced warnings of extreme weather can usually reduce the risks by providing people with the opportunity to take precautionary measures.
By providing easy-to-understand overviews of the weather and climate in the Central Asia region, the utility of weather and water information for society, and the role and needs of the National Meteorological and Hydrological Services, this Atlas can be used to inform decision-making, scope possible investments in development, and educate people. It recognizes common interests and specific differences between the climate zones and economic sectors of Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan. It also celebrates progress in the modernization of the respective National Meteorological and Hydrological Services and lays out a development path for service-oriented weather, climate and water information services.