The future of precipitation monitoring and forecasting in Africa
Wednesday, Dec 02, UTC 10:00 to 10:55
Organizer: HKV, GMet, KNMI, NADMO, TAHMO
|In the world’s fastest urbanizing continent, Africa, urban floods are a huge and growing problem. Early warning is the first important step in flood risk management. This requires continuous precipitation measurements and forecasts, which is not always available in African cities. This lack of data is problematic but not unsolvable according to the speakers of this session. We will discuss various innovative methods to increase precipitation measurements and forecasts for the African continent with a panel of representatives of five organizations.|
Each organization has its own inspiring story, on how to overcome the precipitation data challenge in Africa. Solutions include the use of earth observation data, machine learning and the design of low-cost sensors in collaboration with African schools.
TAHMO (https://tahmo.org/) developed a rain gauge that can be produced for 10 euros, less than 1% of the costs of other rain gauges. Their aim is to build a station every 30km in sub-Saharan Africa. This would result in 20,000 of such stations.
The Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute (KNMI) developed algorithms to extract precipitation amounts from geo-stationary satellite data (MSG-SEVIRI), resulting in precipitation observations available every 15 minutes for the entire continent. The data has smaller latency than other products and higher spatial resolution. HKV (https://www.hkv.nl/) applies machine learning on those measurements to predict up to 3 hours ahead. This information is disclosed on a webpage and in smartphone apps.
The Ghana Meteorological Agency (GMet) and Ghana’s National Disaster Management Organization (NADMO) know from first-hand experience the importance of rainfall information for flood risk management in Ghana. Both organizations will elaborate on their efforts to overcome the issue of data scarcity in Ghana.
In this session, panel members will share their stories and ideas in a short pitch. Afterwards, we will have an interactive discussion on the future of precipitation monitoring and forecasting in Africa.