Weather warning for Asia

Source:(China Daily 04/09/2005 page2)  Author:Liang Chao  2005-04-13

Asian meteorologists gathered to forecast climate changes and omens of consequent effects on the continent at a regional forum in Beijing scheduled to end on Saturday.

"We must further understand the changing climate facing the continent we are living on, and join hands to deal with climate-induced disasters" like drought, floods and typhoons, said Xu Xiaofeng, deputy administrator of the China Meteorological Administration (CMA).

"Co-operation like this can also increase the standard of short-term weather forecasting through more communication in the field across Asia," Xu added.

Addressing the first forum on regional climate monitoring, assessment and prediction in Asia, Xu said that through academic exchange, operational training and profound discussion, work in this field can be enhanced with services improved to benefit regional development.

"The forum is a very timely initiative as many countries in Asia and the world are currently involved in monitoring and preparing seasonal climate prediction services and assessing the risks and impacts associated with the current weak EI Nino event," said Penehuro F Lefale, a scientific officer at the World Meteorological Organization (WMO).

For much of the past year, sea surface temperatures in the central equatorial Pacific have been warmer than normal, known as a condition that precedes development of an EI Nino Event, experts say.

By analyzing conditions in the Pacific basin and locally, and reviewing predicted models, they believe that the effects of such an event will remain weak during the 2005 southern hemisphere summer, with a consequent limited influence on rainfall.

Sponsored by CMA's Beijing Climate Centre (BCC), the three-day forum was aimed at promoting co-operation on climate change between Asian countries as well as between Asia and other parts of the world.

"WMO will continue to support such forum initiatives to ensure their continuity and sustainability under the Climate Agenda Framework," Lefale added.