Bhutan: Hydromet Services and Disaster Resilience Regional Project

September 20, 2016

Name of Project: Bhutan: Hydromet Services and Disaster Resilience Regional Project

Under the Grant Agreement, the Royal Government of Bhutan will receive a Grant of US$ 3.8 million from the World Bank for the Hydromet Services and Disaster Resilience Regional Project.  The project is supported through grant funds provided by the Government of Japan under the Japan-World Bank Program for Mainstreaming Disaster Risk Management in Developing Countries; European Commission under the European Union-South Asia Capacity Building for Disaster Risk Management both administered by the Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR); and the South Asia Water Initiative. The project builds on ongoing development partner investments in Bhutan and in the region.  It is part of the World Bank’s broader regional efforts to strengthen hydromet services and disaster resilience in South Asia. 

Project ID: P154477

Terms:  Maturity = N/A  Grace =N/A 

Project Description: 

This project seeks to strengthen Bhutan’s capacity for hydromet services and disaster preparedness. It will support the Department of Disaster Management (DDM) under the Ministry of Home & Cultural Affairs; Department of Hydromet Services (DHMS) under the Ministry of Economic Affairs, and Department of Agriculture (DOA) under the Ministry of Agriculture and Forests on knowledge management, information and communication technology, infrastructure, and equipment.

With the DDM, the project will support establishment of critical emergency infrastructure which will include the establishment of National Emergency Operation Center, equipping district emergency operation centers with basic emergency communications and coordination items and strengthening of the Disaster Management Information System. Funds will also support other critical emergency services such as helicopter operations and training of pilots.

With the DHMS, the project seeks to enhance forecasting capacity and service delivery. Funds will be used to procure ICT, hardware, and software to improve the DHMS’s services. It will also fund targeted aviation meteorology equipment to enhance aviation safety at the Paro International Airport and Bumthang Domestic Airport.

In response to the recent floods that caused severe damages especially in the southern parts of the country, the project will also support strengthening of flood forecasting capacity of DHMS which is currently not possible.

The component with the DOA will fund the design of an agromet decision support system and the development and delivery of agromet information products in two Dzongkhags to increase agricultural productivity and assist farmers in coping with weather and climate extremes.