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.