South Asia Hydromet Forum II - November 2019
The second South Asia Hydromet Forum (SAHF) aims to further strengthen regional engagement to deliver reliable and timely weather information that local communities, farmers, construction firms, hydropower operators, and other economic sectors can act on. The forum will convene high-level representatives from government agencies and development institutions working on hydromet, disaster warning systems, and climate services.
Following the commitments made at the first SAHF last year, the forum on Nov. 19-21 will explore ways to make weather and river forecasts more effective. For example, instead of telling users “what the weather will be,” national hydromet agencies can promote greater resilience by telling users “what the weather will do,” also known as impact-based forecasting. Severe weather warnings can be tailored for various stakeholders to help them act on the information. The gathering of hydromet agencies, scientists, researchers, and development experts will also discuss how to translate weather warnings into actions that save lives and property. An early warning system is more effective if it uses a people-centered approach that considers a community’s needs, perceptions of risk, and how weather information is accessed.
This year’s SAHF will focus on:
- Sharing strategic visions to develop and deliver user-oriented hydromet services for key economic sectors;
- Exchanging innovative approaches to improve forecasting skills, and provide hazard information for risk assessments, prevention, response and recovery, and risk transfer across sectors;
- Addressing common implementation challenges;
- Prioritizing areas for stronger regional collaboration, such as training weather forecasters; and
- Discussing institutional arrangements to sustain and scale up national and regional efforts to deliver hydromet and climate services.
Nepal, the host country, will inaugurate a new building to house its Department of Hydrology and Meteorology and share lessons learned during an ambitious program to modernize national hydromet services. The Program for Asia Resilience to Climate Change, a trust fund administered by the World Bank and supported by UK’s Department for International Development (DFID), will launch the South Asia Challenge Fund for Hydromet and Early Warning Services. The new fund will pilot user-led weather- and climate-services products and tools that benefit South Asian users and stakeholders. Applicants may seek funding of up to US$100,000 per proposal. Applicants are encouraged to collaborate with national and local governments and to involve end users and at-risk communities in creating products and tools.