Weather Forecasting Current Affairs - 2020

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January 15: IMD Foundation Day

On January 15, 2020, the IMD celebrates its 145th Foundation Day. It was begun in 1875. The day will be celebrated by Ministry of Earth Science under which IMD (Indian Meteorological Department) functions.

Recent Achievements of IMD

Around 5 observatories of IMD received recognition from World Meteorological Organization (WMO). It includes Chennai, Mumbai, Pune, Thiruvananthapuram and Panjim. They were recognised for their long-term observatory services of more than 100 years.

It earned global applause for its accurate prediction of Cyclone Fani

The False Alarm ratio has declined and the Probability of Detection (POD) has increased from 0.45 in 2002 to 0.8 in 2019.

Technological Advancements

In August 2019, CDES (Centralised Data Entry System) replaced DATEN9 software. Around 91 observatory stations and 40 airports are using the system. It also provides Agro-Meteorological Advisory services under PPP model providing weather conditions to more than 40.2 million farmers.

IMD

It is the principle agency of GoI that makes weather forecasts, meteorological observations and seismological observations. The headquarters of IMD is in Delhi. It operates observatory station in India and in Antarctica. The major IMD centres are located in Guwahati, Kolkata, Chennai, Mumbai, New Delhi and Nagpur.

IMD is one of the six regional specialised Meteorological centres of WMO.

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Impact Based Forecasting Approach: IMD develops technology to assess rise of water level in rivers

India Meteorological Department (IMD) has developed new technology called ‘Impact Based Forecasting Approach’ to assess rise of water level in rivers and reservoirs by rain.  It shows pre-event scenario will help state governments authorities to minutely monitor impact of rainfall and take real-time decisions. It will help to avoid disastrous situation similar to Kerala floods. It can generate scenario to help take decisions to release water or not from reservoirs after heavy downpour. It will be helpful for every state authority to take decision. This system can be run in pre-event scenario.

Background

The heavy downpour which had ravaged Kerala in August 2018 had caused death of around 500 people and economic damages worth over Rs 40,000 crore. Excessive rainfall had led to floods in Kerala and was result of climate change. State Government had blamed IMD for lapses in its part for wrong rain forecast. IMD had forecasted estimated 98.5 mm rain in the state between 9 and 15 August, 2018 but Kerala received was 352.2 mm of rainfall resulting in severe flooding.

India Meteorological Department (IMD)

It is national meteorological service of the country and chief government agency dealing in everything related to meteorology, seismology and associated subjects. It was formed in 1875. It functions under Ministry of Earth Sciences. It is headquartered in New Delhi.

Mandate

  • Undertake meteorological observations and provide current information and forecasting information for most favorable operation of weather-dependent activities such as irrigation, agriculture, aviation, shipping etc.
  • Offer warning against severe weather phenomenon such as tropical cyclones, norwesters, dust storms, heat waves, cold waves, heavy rains, heavy snow, etc.
  • Provide met-related statistics needed for agriculture, industries, water resources management, oil exploration, and any other strategically important activities for the country.
  • Engage in research in meteorology and allied subjects.
  • Detect and locate earthquakes and evaluate of seismicity in various parts of the country for developmental projects.

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