National
Makerere to improve weather forecasts
Publish Date: Jan 28, 2014
Makerere to improve weather forecasts
  • mail
  • img
newvision

By John Agaba

Makerere University is partnering with the department of meteorology to design and deploy an additional 30 weather stations in the country, a move that will improve accuracy in weather projections in the country and region.


This comes after the university won a grant worth around $3m (about sh7.4b) to improve weather information management in East Africa, through the use of ICTs.

The Norwegian funded project is part of the 12 projects the university scooped after competing in the capacity building in higher education and research for development (NORHED) scheme, intended at promoting sustainable, economic, social and environmental development in low and middle income countries.

Dr. Julianne Sansa-Otim, the overall project coordinator, said they are partnering with the department of metrology to design and deploy these weather stations.

She said the design of the projects, expected to commence in June this year after their PhD students have reported back to the university, will be done by the students, but under the supervision of the university professors and researchers from the Bergen University of Norway.

She said the actual deployment of the weather stations will be around 2016 to 2017.

“We have done the cost pricing. Each station is going to cost about $2000 (about sh4.9m),” said Sansa-Otim, “Because it is our students who will design and deploy them.”

She said a lot of data was necessary to accurately predict weather. And the move of deploying an additional 30 weather stations in the country would go some way in improving the accuracy of weather forecasts in Uganda and East Africa.

Khalid Muwembe, the Uganda department of metrology public relations, said they have a total of about 100 weather stations under the department which are fully operational.

He said 12 of these were synoptic stations hooked to the global weather data exchange system and another 18 which are agro-metrological stations located mainly at NARO centres for agriculture.

The department also has 18 hydro-metrological stations for predicting mainly rainfall and water levels in the soil. It also has about 60 stations for predicting rainfall.

Muwembe said conventional weather stations were much expensive compared to the latest ‘movable’ stations.

Sansa-Otim said they will also partner with the metrological department to build a modern weather dissemination system that will disseminate weather forecasts timely to the population.

“Farmers need to know when to plant,” she said. “Giving them this information early will help them know when to plant.”

She also said that accurate weather predictions forecast early could help in avoiding catastrophic occurrences like the mudslides that have plagued the Bududa region in Eastern Uganda lately.

“We need to accurately predict weather,” she said. “Accurate prediction of weather is important for ensuring sustainability of our economy and population.”

During the inception of 12 projects at the Makerere University School Food Technology, Nutrition and Bio-engineering recently, Prof. Samuel Kyamanywa, the projects Principal Investigator, said the university was also partnering with the University of Juba to train a total of five PhD and 12 Masters students for the South Sudan university, under another project.

The ambassador of Norway to Uganda, Thorbjorn Gaustadsaether, challenged the researchers to do research that will impact local economic development, social transformation and environmental stability, and not to indulge in research for academics sake.
 

The statements, comments, or opinions expressed through the use of New Vision Online are those of their respective authors, who are solely responsible for them, and do not necessarily represent the views held by the staff and management of New Vision Online.

New Vision Online reserves the right to moderate, publish or delete a post without warning or consultation with the author.Find out why we moderate comments. For any questions please contact digital@newvision.co.ug

  • mail
  • img
blog comments powered by Disqus
Also In This Section
Families receive bodies of S. Sudan bus crash
Grieving relatives last evening flocked Mulago Hospital mortuary to pick bodies of their loved ones killed in Monday’s bus accident in South Sudan....
Police donates to Mulago Hospital patients
POLICE have donated items to patients at Mulago Hospital as preparations to celebrate 100 years of existence in Uganda...
Museveni calls for value addition in mining industry
Uganda's mining investors should prioritize value addition to minerals in order to build a strong base for the economy, President Yoweri Museveni has said....
NRM fails to respond to sh5.44b suit
THE ruling NRM party has failed to file its defence to a suit filed by a party member who is demanding sh5.44b purportedly used to the party register during the 2010 party primaries...
Urban TV launches trendy news show
THE new program known as The Newsroom will on a daily basis line-up coverage of Ugandan, regional and international affairs, features, documentaries and interviews...
Is Uganda involved in skulls trade?
Last month, Police in Luwero said they stopped three men who were riding on one bodaboda. Then, the men fired at the Police....
Will police's move to increase the number of investigators help deal with fraud?
Yes
No
Can't Say
follow us
subscribe to our news letter