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Programmes > DRA > Regional Office for Asia and Pacific > Region V

Region V (South-West Pacific)

The Region covers the vast expanse of the South-West Pacific Ocean but also includes adjacent oceanic areas north of the Equator as well as eastern parts of the Indian Ocean. The countries that comprise the Regional Association are diverse in many respects: culturally, economically, biologically, geographically and climatologically.

The climate and weather-related hazards that most frequently occur in the Region are tropical cyclones and associated storm surges, floods, landslides, severe thunderstorms, wildfires and drought. Typhoons forming over the equatorial northwest Pacific Ocean frequently impact the Philippines, making it one of the most tropical cyclone prone areas on the planet. Few countries in the Region are immune from tropical cyclone impact. Drought can affect any country within RA V from the tropics to the mid-latitudes. Other threats linked with global warming include sea-level rise (of great significance in a region dominated by ocean) and increased wildfire occurrence. The Region contains significant geological instability that can result in devastating tsunami events as occurred in December 2004 in Indonesia as well as hazard to aviation through volcanic ash intrusions into the atmosphere.

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NIUE Government endorsed meteorological services act

Niue now has a legislation making comprehensive provisions in relation to the provision of meteorological and climate related services. The title of the legislation is the “Meteorological Services Act of 2013 (No. 326)”, passed by Niue’s Assembly on the 11th of September 2013, and subsequently signed and sealed by the Speaker of Assembly, Honorable Ahohiva Levi on the 23rd of September 2013.  Part 1 of the Act provides preliminary definitions of terminologies used; Part 2 outlines the functions and responsibilities of the Niue Meteorological Service; Part 3 refers to the functions of the Niue Meteorological Service in relation to regional international conventions and treaties; Part 4 highlights the protection and operation of the Meteorology Department’s assets; Part 5 focuses on the enforcement of the Meteorological Services Act 2013; and the Act concludes with Part 6 which includes protection of the Niue Meteorological Service from liability, and provision of fees or charges for services. The development of Niue’s Meteorological Act of 2013 is a partnership between WMO, SPREP and the Government of Niue through its Meteorology Department under the “Legislation Drafting Project for the Niue Meteorological Service”.  It is fully funded by WMO, and with the assistance of a Consultant, SPREP, and the Meteorology Department, the first draft of the Act was developed and submitted to the Government of Niue in May 2012. This is a response to the request from the Government of Niue through its Niue Meteorological Service to WMO. Mr Sionetasi Pulehetoa, Director of Niue Meteorological Service says, “This is a milestone for the department and government.  It is indeed appropriate to have such a document in place to protect and give legal status for the operationalization of climate and weather, including disaster warnings for Niue”.

 

Installation of SmartMet in Papua New Guinea – a Software Tool for Weather Forecasting: Visualizing and Editing Meteorological Data

 

Papua New Guinea is one of the 5 Pacific Island Countries (Fiji, Samoa, Solomon Islands and Tonga) having SmartMet Software Tool installed in their respective National Meteorological Services.  SmartMet in Papau New Guinea NMS is fully operational following installation and training by the experts from the Finnish Meteorological Institute and the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme. Mr Roy H. Mumu, the Secretary of the Department of Transport officially commissioned the Smartmet. Papau New Guinea National Meteorological Service is under the portfolio of the Department of Transport.

SmartMet software tool for weather forecasting, developed by the Finnish Meteorological Institute to collate, view, analyse and interpret weather data and at the same time compose, edit, disseminate and archive weather forecasts in graphical and text formats.  The new system will help National Meteorological Services in Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands and Tonga to produce new automated weather products and improve the quality of their services.  The Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme’s Information and Technology Officer joined the Finnish Meteorological Institute’s experts to installation and provide training in Papua New Guinea for the National Meteorological Services staff as part of the Secretariat’s efforts to be able to provide the necessary information and technology technical support to these Meteorological Services in collaboration with the Finnish Meteorological Service. SmartMet is a programme of the Finland-Pacific Finland-Pacific Project. The Project is funded by the Government of Finland and implemented by SPREP in full collaboration with WMO and others.

 

For more information on the Finland-Pacific Project, Please contact:

Ms Christina Leale-Gale

Finland-Pacific Project – Project Manager

Tel: +685 21929 Ext. 224

Fax: +685 20231

Email: christinal@sprep.org

Website: www.sprep.org

 

Installation of SmartMet in Papua New Guinea – a Software Tool for Weather Forecasting: Visualizing and Editing Meteorological Data

 

Papua New Guinea is one of the 5 Pacific Island Countries (Fiji, Samoa, Solomon Islands and Tonga) having SmartMet Software Tool installed in their respective National Meteorological Services.  SmartMet in Papau New Guinea NMS is fully operational following installation and training by the experts from the Finnish Meteorological Institute and the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme. Mr Roy H. Mumu, the Secretary of the Department of Transport officially commissioned the Smartmet. Papau New Guinea National Meteorological Service is under the portfolio of the Department of Transport.

SmartMet software tool for weather forecasting, developed by the Finnish Meteorological Institute to collate, view, analyse and interpret weather data and at the same time compose, edit, disseminate and archive weather forecasts in graphical and text formats.  The new system will help National Meteorological Services in Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands and Tonga to produce new automated weather products and improve the quality of their services.  The Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme’s Information and Technology Officer joined the Finnish Meteorological Institute’s experts to installation and provide training in Papua New Guinea for the National Meteorological Services staff as part of the Secretariat’s efforts to be able to provide the necessary information and technology technical support to these Meteorological Services in collaboration with the Finnish Meteorological Service. SmartMet is a programme of the Finland-Pacific Finland-Pacific Project. The Project is funded by the Government of Finland and implemented by SPREP in full collaboration with WMO and others.

 

For more information on the Finland-Pacific Project, Please contact:

Ms Christina Leale-Gale

Finland-Pacific Project – Project Manager

Tel: +685 21929 Ext. 224

Fax: +685 20231

Email: christinal@sprep.org

Website: www.sprep.org

 

Samoa Prepares for 2014/2015 Tropical Cyclone Season

 

 As Samoa is preparing for the 2014-2015 Tropical Cyclone Seasons, Samoa Meteorology Division of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment through the Samoa Climate Early Warning System (CLEWS) is predicting an elevated cyclone activity for Samoa for the season.. Two or more named tropical cyclones are predicted to interact with the Samoa islands during the season, from 1st November 2014 to 30th April 2015. The risk of tropical cyclones this season is no different to 2012-2013 Tropical Cyclone Seasons; where Samoa interacted with Tropical Cyclone “Evan” and Tropical Cyclone “Garry”.

 

In the Samoa Observer Newspaper (Friday 31 October 2014), the local newspaper in Samoa Mr. Mulipola Ausetalia Titimaea, Assistant Chief Executive Officers for Meteorology Division, Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, has cautioned the people of Samoa that there is more than a 40 per cent chance that a tropical cyclone would developed and a possibility of a Category 3 tropical cyclone. Two or more tropical cyclones are predicted to interact with the Islands of Samoa during the 2014-2015 Tropical Cyclone Season. The Tropical Cyclone Outlook for 2014-2015 is based on statistical analysis of past tropical cyclone events that have occurred in similar El Nino Southern Oscillation (ENSO) condition.

 

Mr. Titimaea reminded all communities in Samoa to remain vigilant and be prepared, and concerned government agencies and ministries must implement relevant measures to mitigate the potential impacts of tropical cyclones. The Meteorology division continues to monitor the development of ENSO and provide further advice. The 2014-2015 Tropical Cyclone starts on 1 November 2014.

 

Ends (5 November 2015)

 

Pacific Meteorological Services learn about lightning location for improved severe weather forecasting

 

Forecasters and technicians from across twelve National Meteorological Services in the Pacific (Cook Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Marshall Islands, Niue, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tuvalu, and Vanuatu) gathered in Apia on the 14th and 15th of October to learn about lightning detection and how it can improve severe weather forecasting in the Pacific region.  As part of the Finland-Pacific (FINPAC) Project targeting 'reduced vulnerability of Pacific Island Countries' livelihood to the effects of Climate Change, SPREP and the Finnish Meteorological Institute jointly organised this regional workshop.  Participants were also able to experience hands-on training on locating lightning caused incidents based on a given data set.  The FINPAC Project will provide a direct data feed for Tonga, Samoa, Papua New Guinea, Fiji and Solomon Islands while internet-based products will be made available to the rest of the participating countries.  Lightning location data will be provided in near-real time to assist forecasters in determining the exact location and intensity of tropical cyclones and strong thunderstorms.  The data is important for electricity transmission companies that can use it to save on maintenance costs for power lines and for civil aviation authorities.  This service is a milestone in the Pacific and will serve as a platform for developing a sustainable lighting system for the region in the future.  The workshop was made possible through funding from the Government of Finland. FINPAC project is funded the Government of Finland through its Ministry of Foreign Affairs and it is implemented by SPREP in full collaboration with WMO.

 

For more information of FINPAC Project, Please contact:

Ms Christina Leale-Gale

Finland-Pacific Project – Project Manager

Tel: +685 21929 Ext. 224

Fax: +685 20231

Email: christinal@sprep.org

Website: www.sprep.org

 

 

 

 

 

 

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