Virtual Sessions

April 23, 2020

Dear CMOS members and CMOS Congress participants,

We are writing to inform you about plans for an online alternative to the 54th Congress of the Canadian Meteorological and Oceanographic Society (CMOS), which was to have been held in Ottawa from May 24-28, 2020 but has been cancelled due to COVID-19.

These plans are the result of discussions involving the Scientific Program Committee (SPC), the Local Arrangements Committee (LAC), session convenors, and CMOS Executive and Council.

The annual CMOS Congress is an important event for maintaining connections within our scientific community.  We have decided to offer an online forum for some of the science represented by the 350 submitted abstracts. Moving to an online format will be a new endeavour for CMOS, so we will be keeping it simple.

This new format will involve some of the originally proposed sessions being held online over the three weeks from Monday May 25 to Friday June 12. The sessions will be hosted by those convenors who are able and willing to run them, and will be live-streamed using Zoom. Although Zoom is not accessible to federal government computers, federal government participants may phone in or work through their personal mobile devices to get access.

The SPC Co-Chairs will be contacting session convenors with additional details, and interested convenors will be responsible for contacting those who submitted abstracts to their session to determine who wishes to give a presentation. All abstracts that have been submitted to the Congress have been accepted. The Ottawa LAC will post the schedules and video conference details when the sessions have been determined.

There will be no abstract or registration fees associated with participating in this online event.

In addition to this scientific forum, the CMOS Annual General Meeting is scheduled for May 25, 2020 from:

11:00am – 1:00pm Pacific (Vancouver Island, BC Lower Mainland, BC Interior/Yukon)
12:00pm – 2:00pm Mountain (Alberta) & Central Standard (Saskatoon)
1:00pm – 3:00pm Central Daylight (Winnipeg)
2:00pm – 4:00pm EDT (Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal, Quebec City, Rimouski)
3:00pm – 5:00pm Atlantic (New Brunswick, Halifax)
3:30pm – 5:30pm Newfoundland Daylight (Newfoundland)

This will be a virtual meeting. Connection details and the agenda will be distributed soon.

Other business meetings that normally take place during the Congress will also be scheduled for late May or early June. These will be held as virtual meetings with remote attendance enabled.  We are also considering an alternative format for the annual Awards Ceremony.

A second component to the 54th Congress may involve a plenary on societal resilience and science of extreme events such as tornadoes in Ottawa in September on the two-year anniversary of the destructive Ottawa tornadoes; details regarding this event will follow at a later date.

While cancelling the Ottawa Congress was a great disappointment, we hope that this online scientific forum will enable our community to present and discuss their latest scientific results with friends and colleagues.  We hope to see you online next month!

If you have any questions, please contact Gordon Griffith at

Best wishes,

Kimberly Strong, CMOS President
Bruce Angle, 2020 CMOS Congress LAC Chair
Leonard Barrie and Gordon McBean, 2020 CMOS Congress SPC Co-Chairs
Gordon Griffith, CMOS Executive Director
2020 CMOS Congress website:


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