Submitted by admin on Tue, 05/29/2018 - 02:55
May 29, 2018 by admin
Climate Change Resilience
The Fiji Meteorological Service (FMS) in collaboration with the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) has undertaken a Regional Training on “Analysis of Himawari Data with SATAID” scheduled for 21 to 26 May 2018 at the FMS headquarters in Namaka, Nadi.

The training was officially opened yesterday by JICA Fiji Resident Representative, Ms. Yukari Ono. The training is aimed to allow the forecasters of the Small Island Developing States (SIDS) in the South Pacific to maximise the benefit of Himawari-8, the Japanese meteorological satellite, for monitoring and forecasting the severe weather in the region such as tropical cyclones and heavy rains.

Himawari-8 is equipped with the state-of-the-art imagers capable of multi-band, high-resolution and high-frequency observation. Himawari-8 data is most effectively utilised with SATAID, a freely available analytical software provided by the Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA).
A total of 10 forecasters at National Meteorological Services (NMSs) of Cook Islands, Kiribati, Nauru, Niue, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu and Fiji have gathered in Nadi, at FMS to acquire the advanced knowledge and skills to utilise the data from Himawari-8. They will also carry out case studies on Tropical Cyclones Gita, Hola, Josie and Keni with SATAID during the training to develop necessary skills in analysing and interpreting information.

Fiji Met training

This training is conducted under the 4-year project “Reinforcing Meteorological Training Function of FMS” which was launched in December 2014 with the support of JICA for strengthening the FMS’s capacity in meteorological training.

Delivering her official opening address, Ms. Yukari Ono said following the provision of Himawari Cast Equipment by JICA in 2016 to the Meteorological Services Offices in Solomon Islands, Vanuatu and Fiji and by the World Meteorological Organisation o Kiribati, Tuvalu, Samoa and Tonga, she hopes that this training will further advance the participants’ knowledge on the use of the satellite and data.

“As you may know that Himawari-8 is a Japanese new generation geostationary meteorological satellite covering East Asia and the Western Pacific regions and its operation began in July 2015. This satellite performs high-frequency observations to enable Forecasters to closely watch severe weather in the Pacific such as tropical cyclones and thunderstorms.”

“As we all know that Meteorological Offices play an important role in disseminating daily updated quality weather forecasts, advanced advisories and warnings and I applaud the Fiji Meteorological Service for playing a leading role in providing this important training to Meteorological officers/Forecasters in the Southwest Pacific region,” Ms. Ono said.

She added that the Fiji Meteorological Service and the Government of Japan have been associated for over 20 years through the construction of the Regional Specialised Meteorological Centre (RSMC) Facility in Nadi, provision of equipment and technical training in Japan and Fiji.

“JICA will continue to strengthen its support through various schemes. On this note, I would also like to inform you that the current Project with FMS will come to an end this December. However, I believe that our spirt will be maintained by FMS and it will continue to provide training to SIDS for further improvement of the meteorological services in this region,” Ms. Ono said.

The Director of Meteorology, Mr Ravind Kumar said Government of Fiji acknowledges and appreciates the long standing cooperation with the Government of Japan and in particular the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) who has been generously supporting the training program.

“It is a pleasure to say that the World Meteorological Organisation has a very high regard for the training activities carried out by FMS in collaboration with JICA since year 2015 in capacity building for the regional National Meteorological Services of the South West Pacific,” Mr. Kumar said.

He adds the Fiji Meteorological Service, being a Regional Specialised Meteorological Centre (RSMC) and a Tropical Cyclone Centre (TCC) plays a vital role not only in providing the daily weather bulletins to the regional countries, but also assists in the training and capacity building of the meteorological service staff of the National Meteorological Services of the Pacific.