IOC Assembly

PTWS Recommendations and Resolutions

PTWS Recommendations are proposed and agreed by Member States during ICG/PTWS meetings and forwarded to IOC Governing Bodies (IOC Executive Council or IOC Assembly) for full or partial adoption. PTWS Resolutions, which does not impact on IOC general policy or financial issues, are proposed and adopted by Member States at ICG/PTWS meetings.

IOC Assembly 25th Session, June 2009 Twenty-Third Session of the IOC Intergovernmental Coordination Group for the Tsunami Early Warning and Mitigation System in the Pacific (ICG/PTWS). The re-elected Vice-Chairman of the ICG/PTWS, Mr Yohei Hasegawa (Japan), introduced this item. Established as a Subsidiary Body of the Commission by Resolution IV.6, ICG/PTWS reported on its work pursuant to Rule of Procedure 48.3. Mr Hasegawa reported on the main results of the 23rd Session of the Intergovernmental Coordination Group (ICG/PTWS-XXIII; Apia, Samoa, 16–18 February 2009). The ICG adopted
the PTWS Medium-term Strategy and a new PTWS Working Group structure and reviewed the progress on the PTWS Implementation Plan.


The ICG/IOTWS, ICG/NEAMTWS, ICG/CARIBE-EWS and ICG/PTWS reported on their intersessional activities.
IOC Assembly 25th Session, 4.5 Prevention and Reduction of the Impacts of Natural Hazards (High Level Objective 1) Summary Reports


Document Title
IOC Assembly 25th Session, June 2009

PDF (269 KB)


IOC Executive Council 41st Session, June 2008, Resolution EC-XLI.6

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Resolution EC-XLI.6


The Executive Council,

Recalling IOC Resolutions XXIII-12, XXIII-13, XXIII-14 and EC-XXXIX-8, which established the Intergovernmental Coordination Groups and decided that the IOC shall provide the Secretariat support for these ICGs: the Indian Ocean Tsunami Warning and Mitigation System (ICG/IOTWS), the Tsunami and Other Coastal Hazards Warning System for the Caribbean and Adjacent Regions (ICG/CARIBE-EWS), the Tsunami Early Warning and Mitigation System in the North-eastern Atlantic, Mediterranean and Connected Seas ICG/NEAMTWS), and the Pacific Tsunami Warning System (ICG/PTWS),

Further recalling:

(i) IOC Resolution XXIV-14, establishing the Working Group on Tsunamis and other Ocean Hazards Warning and Mitigation Systems (TOWS-WG)

(ii) IOC Resolution XXIV-13, instructing the IOC Executive Secretary to prepare draft common requirements for regional centres in close co-operation with the ICGs,


(i) that the IOTWS, CARIBE-EWS, NEAMTWS and PTWS will be coordinated networks of national systems and capacities and will be part of global early warning systems for ocean-related hazards

(ii) that Member States have responsibilities to issue warnings within their respective territories, and

(iii) the IOC commitment to the free and unrestricted exchange of tsunami-relevant realtime observational data in accordance with the UNESCO/IOC Oceanographic Data Exchange Policy and without prejudice to the sovereignty of Member States,

Noting paragraph 112 of the United Nations General Assembly Resolution A/61/222,

Acknowledging with appreciation the ongoing and dedicated financial and other support provided by Member States and other donors to the operation of the Tsunami Co-ordination Unit,

Having considered:

(i) the Executive Summary of the 22nd Session of the ICG/PTWS (ICG/IOTWS-XXII/3s)

(ii) the Report of the 4th Session of the ICG/NEAMTWS (ICG/NEAMTWS-IV/3)

(iii) the Executive Summary of the 3rd Session of the ICG/CARIBE-EWS (ICG/CARIBEEWS-III/3s)

(iv) the Executive Summary of the 5th Session of the ICG/IOTWS (ICG/IOTWS-V/3s)

(v) the Executive Summary of the first session of the Working Group on Tsunamis and other Ocean Hazards Warning and Mitigation Systems (TOWS-WG)

Endorses the reports and requests the Executive Secretary to support the implementation of the actions contained therein, as appropriate;

Adopts the Global Ocean-related Hazards Warning and Mitigation System Framework document (Annex IV of the report IOC/TOWS-WG-I/3);

Expresses its gratitude to:

(i) the Government of Ecuador for hosting the 22nd Session of the ICG/PTWS in Guayaquil, 17–21 September 2007

(ii) the Government of Portugal for hosting the 4th Session of the ICG/NEAMTWS in Lisbon, 21–23 November 2007

(iii) the Government of Panama for hosting the 3rd Session of the ICG/CARIBE-EWS in Panama City, 12–14 March 2008

(iv) the Government of Malaysia for hosting the 5th Session of the ICG/IOTWS in Putrajaya, 4–8 April 2008,

Expresses its appreciation to NOAA and JMA for providing Interim Tsunami Advisory Information Service for the Indian Ocean, and encourages them to continue to provide this information;

Endorses with appreciation the Interim Tsunami Advisory Information Service for the South China Sea provided by the Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre (PTWC), the West Coast Alaska Tsunami Warning Center (WC/ATWC) and Northwest Pacific Tsunami Advisory Center (NWPTAC);

Encourages the Member States around the South China Sea and other regional seas, as appropriate, to actively promote the development, establishment and sustained operation of national and sub-regional Tsunami Warning and Mitigation Systems within the framework of ICGs;

Welcomes the generous offers of:

(i) the Government of Samoa to host the 23rd Session of the ICG/PTWS in February 2009

(ii) the Government of Greece to host the 5th Session of the ICG/NEAMTWS in November 2008

(iii) the Government of France to host the 4th Session of the ICG/CARIBE-EWS in Martinique in March 2009

(iv) the Government of Thailand to host the 6th Session of the ICG/IOTWS in April 2009;

Reaffirms the need for common requirements for regional tsunami advisory and watch providers centres of the Tsunami Warning and Mitigation Systems, while recognizing that different ocean regions have certain characteristics that are unique and that require specialized approaches;

Underlining the important role of the TOWS-WG as defined in its Terms of Reference to further the IOC Strategic Plan,

Noting the need to harmonize regional ICG structures to create efficiency and facilitate exchange of knowledge and information among the ICGs,


(i) the ICG Chairpersons to work with the Member States and the TOWS Working Group towards developing harmonized working group structures that map easily across ICG and provide a foundation for inter-operability and further requests the ICGs and other subsidiary bodies identified in the TOWS report to consider carefully the report recommendations and respond, as appropriate, at the next meeting of the TOWS-WG

(ii) the Executive Secretary to prepare, in consultation with the co-chairs of the TOWSWG and the ICG chairs, a strategy and plan to support implementation of the Global Ocean-related Hazards Warning and Mitigation System Framework and TOWS-WG recommendations, to be provided to the TOWS-WG at least one month in advance of its next meeting

(iii) JCOMM/GLOSS to compile a global core sea level network for tsunami and other ocean-related hazards, building on the requirements of the ICGs, and coastal GOOS sea level measurement and reporting requirements; further building on the existing GLOSS core network for climate wherever possible; and taking into account broad requirements for prediction, detection, and post-hazard assessments, with initial priority given to the Caribbean region and the North African coast of the Mediterranean

(iv) TOWS-WG:

(a) to identify, in close cooperation with the Chairs of the ICGs, common practices and procedures used by each ICG’s tsunami advisory and warning centres in order to promote interoperability, with a view toward preparing recommendations for IOC principles, criteria, and procedures for ocean-related hazards warning and mitigation systems

(b) to prepare a detailed report on the implementation of the actions and recommendations specified in this resolution, as well as on progress in the harmonisation of regional tsunami warning and mitigation systems, for consideration by the Assembly in 2009,

Recommends to the Assembly to continue the TOWS-WG for the further intersessional period, with the same mandate and membership.


Financial implications: none

IOC Executive Council 39th Session, June 2006

4.7.4 Follow-up to the Twentieth and Twenty-First Sessions of the IOC Intergovernmental Coordination Group for the Tsunami Early Warning and Mitigation System in the Pacific (ICG/PTWS)

IOC Executive Council 39th Session, June 2006 (PTWS Section)  
[PDF 306 KB]
IOC Executive Council 39th Session, June 2006 (Full Document)  
[PDF 2.27 MB]
IOC Resolutions and Recommendations Related to the ICG/PTWS, 16 April 2007  [PDF 24.0 KB]


39th IOC Executive Council (2006)

Resolution Implementation

Resolution EC-XXXIX.8
Intergovernmental Coordination Group for the Pacific Tsunami Warning and Mitigation System

The ITSU was renamed as the PTWS, with the ITIC serving the PTWS Secretariat. The JMA NWPTAC and PTWC continue to serve as interim service providers for the South China Sea region.  During the PTWS Tsunami Warning Operations Seminar (see Resolution EC-XXXIX.9), countries bordering the South China Sea identified priority actions and requirements for the establishment of a permanent service, recognizing the initiatives of other organizations including the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).  The PTWC and JMA continue to provide interim services for the Indian Ocean, and the PTWC and WC/ATWC for the Caribbean region, thus providing consistency and interoperability for most of the interim global tsunami warning system. The JMA and PTWC coordinate actively on warning operations and with ITIC, work closely together to be responsive in assessment and action with each event that occurs.   Progress toward the establishment of the ITIC as an IOC Programme Office continues. Starting 1 April for 1 year, the ITIC welcomed to its staff a secondee from Japan’s JMA.

The ITIC continued as the IOC’s primary provider of tsunami capacity building and technology transfer, and as a tsunami awareness building resource; TsunamiTeacher (available September 2006) has been distributed widely.  To serve a global need, a number of training, workshops, and expert consultations in the Pacific, Indian Ocean, and Caribbean have been conducted.  In 2007 and 2008, building upon and using the experience of the Pacific, the ITIC will lead a strong capacity building effort to strengthen tsunami warning center and emergency responses procedures and protocols; it is presently focused on the Indian and Pacific Oceans, but applicable globally as a standard and generic set of guidance materials and templates will be used.

Resolution EC-XXXIX.9
Follow-up to the 20th and 21st Sessions of the IOC Coordination Group for Pacific Tsunami

The PTWS and its operational international tsunami warning centres continue to assess its performance and take action to improve upon the timeliness, accuracy, and usefulness of tsunami advisories issued.  The ITIC and PTWC convened a PTWS Tsunami Warning Centre Coordination Meeting in January 2007 attended by 9 operational warning centres to discuss, identify, and recommend service enhancements.  In partnership with the WMO RA V, SOPAC, SPREP, and attended by ASEAN, the PTWS convened a Tsunami Warning Operations Seminar in April 2007 attended by 27 Pacific Island and Southeast Asia countries to bring National Meteorological Services and National Disaster Management Offices serving as the 7x24 Tsunami Warning Focal Points up-to-date on the services of the PTWS, and also to provide input to the SOPAC Regional Early Warning Strategy and the PTWS Medium Term Strategy.  The PTWS Inter-sessional Task Team on Message Content, formed during PTWS-XXII, collected input from the two above meetings, and will propose to PTWS-XXII new messages or services that better meet the needs of PTWS customers.  The PTWS Officers convened in April 2007 to review the progress to date, identify and discuss new priorities, and plan for the PTWS-XXII in October 2007 and hosted by Ecuador.

Extra-budgetary funds raised through March 2007 totaled US$ 13,000



Section Programme 2002 2003 (ITSU-XIX) 2004 2005 (ITSU-XX) 2006 (PTWS-XXI)
Medium-term Strategy   Recommendation ITSU-XIX.1 Working Group on a Comprehensive Tsunami Hazard Reduction Programme   Resolution ITSU-XX.2 Medium Term Strategy WG Resolution PTWS-XXI.1 Medium Term Strategy WG – revised TORs
Programme and Budget   Recommendation ITSU-XIX.5  Programme and Budget for 2004-2005   Recommendation ITSU-XX.4 Programme of Work and Budget Recommendation PTWS-XXI.3 Programme of Work and Budget
Topical Intersessional Working Groups  

Recommendation ITSU-XIX.2 WG on the Central America Pacific Coast Tsunami Warning System

Recommendation ITSU-XIX.4 WG on the Tsunami Warning System in the Southwest Pacific and Indian Ocean

  Recommendation ITSU-XX.1 Establishment of ICG/PTWS Inter-sessional Working groups (1-5)

Recommendation PTWS-XXI.2 Establishment of ICG/PTWS Inter-sessional Working groups (1-5) - to continue, some with revised TORs

Recommendation PTWS-XXI.4 WG on the Central America Pacific Tsunami Warning System

Recommendation PTWS-XXI.5 Working Group on Tsunami Warning and Mitigation in the Southwest Pacific Ocean

Governance       Resolution ITSU-XX.1 ICG/PTWS name change and TOR  
Collaborations   Resolution ITSU-XIX.1 Co-operation with JCOMM   Recommendation ITSU-XX.2 Cooperation wit GLOSS, GTS, and Satellite Operators  
Activities   Recommendation ITSU-XIX.3 Global Historical Tsunami Database Project   Recommendation ITSU-XX.3 Pacific-wide Tsunami Exercise  

IOC Executive Council 37 (July 2004): Resolution EC-XXXVII.4

Resolution EC-XXXVII.4




The Executive Council,


Recalling that the IOC Tsunami Programme is a high priority programme of the Commission,




(i)                 the support of Chile, France, New Zealand, Republic of Korea and USA to the IOC Tsunami Programme in 2002–2003 through Trust Fund and in-kind contributions,


(ii)                the support of the USA in hosting and co-funding the operation of the International Tsunami Information Centre (ITIC) in Hawaii, and of Chile for providing support to the ITIC Associate Director,


(iii)       the establishment of the North Western Pacific Tsunami Information Centre by Japan in 2004,


Considering the Summary Report, Resolution and Recommendations of the 19th Session of the International Co-ordination Group for the Tsunami Warning System in the Pacific (ITSU-XIX), held in Wellington, New Zealand, from 29 September to 2 October 2003, and the progress achieved by the ICG in the implementation of the ITSU Programme at the national and international levels,


Welcoming the studies in support of the development of sub-regional tsunami warning systems for the Central American Pacific Coast and for the Southwest Pacific and Indian Ocean, and the possible development of a comprehensive tsunami hazard-reduction programme,


Endorses the Summary Report and Resolution and adopts the Recommendations of ITSU-XIX;


Strongly encourages Member States to contribute actively to the further development and maintenance of the Tsunami Programme, either through financial contributions to the IOC Trust Fund, staff support or in-kind contributions;


Instructs the IOC Executive Secretary to take action to strengthen the IOC Secretariat support for the ITSU Programme.


Financial implications:    US$82,500 from Regular Programme Budget (2004–2005)

-         US$58,500 from ITSU

-         US$24,000 from Regions

                                                US$59,000 from extra-budgetary resources to be identified


                                                            Total amount: US$141,500


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