Solomon Islands Meteorological Service Receives Data Digitization Equipment From Food And Agriculture Organization (FAO)

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THE Solomon Islands Meteorological Service today took delivery of computer equipment from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) for Meteorological Data entry, processing, and modeling. The equipment includes 9 laptops, MS Office 2019 standalone license for each laptop, 9 Docking stations, monitors, and 9 external drives of 1 Terabytes capacity each for data storage.

The equipment will be used by the Solomon Islands Meteorological service to digitize its climate data to improve its capacity in data management and processing, and ease the development of products and information such as climate trends and variability, climate early warning systems, and other tailor-made information and general weather and climate information for stakeholders and the public.

At a short handing over ceremony, Permanent Secretary for the Ministry of Environment Climate Change Disaster Management and Meteorology Dr. Melchior Mataki thanked the FAO, for their leadership and support to the SIMS to deliver its mandates.

He said, to date, it has been a challenge having to digitize the daily data being collected by the meteorological observers on a 3-hourly basis. “Digitizing it will render the data easily available for analysis by SIMS and other stakeholders that also need to have access to the weather data”. He pointed out that recently there has been an increase in the number of requests coming in from the private sector and international organizations for weather data to support feasibility studies and environmental impact assessments of developments.

PS Mataki said apart from stakeholders, digitizing the data will also be very useful for the MET service itself in terms of verification for forecasts to make some comparisons to what is observed out in the field to what is generated through various computer models the weather office currently use.

Responding to remarks from Dr. Mataki, FAO’s Technical Advisor, Solomon Islands Office Mr. Raushan Kumar said the handing over of the equipment is a demonstration of FAO’s commitment to supporting the needs of Pacific Islands countries including the Solomon Islands. “I would like to thank the Director of SIMS Mr. David Hiriasia and his team for preparing a very good concept note and in a very short period that helped us to secure this particular opportunity,” Mr. Kumar said.

He assured Dr. Mataki and his team from the SIMS that his office is ready for any specific critical intervention that will bring innovation and addition to the work of the SIMS and the Ministry as a whole.

The brief handing over ceremony concluded with PS Dr. Mataki having a very fruitful discussion with FAO’s Sub Regional Coordinator Ms. Xiangjun Yao at which FAO’s role in broader cooperation for national development initiatives was highlighted. She has reiterated FAO’s commitment to respond to the country’s requests in a timely and effective manner.

The equipment has since been installed and a team of 12 specially trained youth has started working on inputting and digitizing all the data.


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John Houanihau
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