Terms of Reference

Mountains cover one-third of the land surface of the earth. Mountains have been of special interest in the study of the earth's atmosphere because of their use as observing platforms, their effect on atmospheric dynamics, and the distinctive conditions associated with the meteorology of mountainous areas. The effect of mountains is felt on all scales of atmospheric motions and phenomena from microclimates produced by the terrain and associated vegetation in large-scale planetary circulations, with intermediate effects on mesoscale events and the development of severe storms. The effect of the atmosphere, and atmosphere-borne pollutants, on mountain ecosystems is emerging as an area of scientific interest.

The intent of the Committee on Mountain Meteorology is to serve as a nexus for those matters relevant to the meteorological community that are fundamentally affected by complex terrain. This definition implies that although the meteorology of mountainous areas shall be a central focus of the committee, the committee must expect to collaborate frequently on mountain-related matters of concern to other committees of the Society. Operations shall be guided by the basic intent of the committee and will include the following: 

  1. members will be drawn from a diverse array of atmospheric specialties but will demonstrate cognizance of aspects of those specialties related to mountainous terrain;
  2. committee actions will be taken to encourage the exchange of information about mountain meteorology within the atmospheric sciences community and with other scientific disciplines;
  3. sponsorship of scientific conferences that focus on a broad variety of mountain-meteorology-related issues and encouragement, through collocation and joint sessions, of interaction with allied disciplines;
  4. nominate deserving individuals for AMS Awards and Fellows;
  5. provision for extension of knowledge through publications, short courses, and assistance to educational institutions; and
  6. service, within the committee's field of interest, to the Society and other committees of the Society as requested.