Now more than ever, we need to be weather-ready, climate-smart and water-wise, says World Meteorological Organization (WMO) Secretary General Petteri Taalas
Countries across the world observed the World Meteorological Day 2018 on March 23, 2018.
This special day, observed on March 23 every year, commemorates the establishment of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and highlights the significance of meteorological and hydrological services for the social wellbeing and sustainability.
With celebrations since 1961, this year’s World Meteorological Day came up with the theme ‘weather-ready, climate-smart,’ which aims to address concerns caused by weather events and climate change.
“Now more than ever, we need to be weather-ready, climate-smart and water-wise. This is because the ever-growing global population faces a wide range of hazards such as tropical cyclone storm surges, heavy rains, heat waves, droughts and many more,” says WMO Secretary General Petteri Taalas.
This day means a lot for the world nations, especially for those like Nepal that are more vulnerable to unfortunate weather events and climate change. In Nepal, the World Meteorological Day 2018 was celebrated for a week period along with the World Water Day, Nepal National Water and Weather Week (NNWWW) 2018.
National Symposium on Meteorology
Marking the occasion, the Society of Hydrologists and Meteorologists – Nepal (SOHAM-Nepal) organized the third edition of National Symposium on Hydrology and Meteorology 2018 at the Hotel Himalaya, Kupondol, Lalitpur.
The symposium saw a wide range of participation from experts of different areas including research and academia.
These included around 150 participants from different related organizations such as Department of Hydrology and Meteorology (DHM), SOHAM, International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD), along with collaborators and academia from Small Earth Nepal (SEN), Kathmandu University and Tribhuvan University, among various organizations.
On the occasion, experts from the Ministry of Forest and Environment, UK-based charity called Practical Action and Kathmandu University presented their papers on climate change and effective implementation of early warning systems at times of disasters.
The experts pitched for the use of Cryosphere Monitoring and Digital Mapping methods for the effective flood resilience mechanism.
The symposium was aimed at facilitating ways for the academicians, concerned government agencies and professionals by encouraging research studies and knowledge exchange in the fields of meteorology and hydrology.
It prime focal points were young students, researchers, government and non-government professionals in hydro-meteorology and relevant sectors, policy planners, media, academia, public and all other stakeholders.
The week-long program was held from March 17-23, 2018.
Nepal Holds a Special Place
Nepal holds a special contribution to the research on related fields of meteorology and hydrology.
When it comes to that, the first Nepali name that is heard is Lujendra Ojha, the young Nepali scientist who contributed to NASA’s research on proving water on Mars.
It was at the age of 21 that Ojha spotted water on Mars through his research while his under graduation at the University of Arizona. Besides spotting water on the red planet, Ojha also came up with compelling evidences on current & seasonal water flow on the planet.
Ojha’s research outcomes in fact raised hopes of life existence on Mars.
Ojha received various honors and awards for his contribution to the modern science, which include ‘Research Excellence Award’ from Arizona’s National Science Foundation in 2015 and is well-known for his research papers and publications.
Nepal holds a greater significance in contributing to the world ecosystem because of its rich natural resources such as water bodies, mountains, lakes and natural habitat. This could be seen in climate change and disaster management measures that the Government of Nepal has taken in the recent past.