Chongqing - From November 14 to 16, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) Regional Association II (Asia) convened in Southwest China's Chongqing to discuss weather, climate, water, and related environmental services.
The choice of Chongqing as the venue highlights the city's significant advancements in meteorological practices and disaster prevention systems.
Chongqing Meteorological Service showcased its comprehensive disaster prevention and mitigation systems at the meeting.
The system's efficiency in reducing disaster impacts aligns with the WMO's Early Warnings for All initiative, launched by UN Secretary-General Antonio Gutierrez in 2022, that is to ensure that everyone on Earth is protected from hazardous weather, water, or climate events through life-saving early warning systems by the end of 2027.
The case presented from Lanying Township in Wuxi County was a testament to the efficacy of Chongqing's system. Here, an early warning for heavy rainfall led to the swift evacuation of 42 residents within 35 minutes, narrowly escaping a destructive mudslide.
Building a layered meteorological disaster prevention system extending from the city level to individual households ensures rapid dissemination of early warning information, with government agencies receiving alerts within a minute and public notifications within five to ten minutes.
This efficiency has resulted in a 98% coverage in warning information dissemination across the population. These are valuable references for tackling climate change and have been crucial in leveraging the city's mega-city status for environmental management.
Many participants plan to adopt Chongqing's exemplary early warning system nationally and globally.
Yu Jun, Regional Officer of WMO, emphasized the potential of integrating the WMO's Early Warnings for All initiative with Chongqing's approach. The city's efficient collaboration and data integration across meteorology, emergency response, and water management were praised as models for broader implementation.
Jochen Luthe, also a Regional Officer of WMO, commended Chongqing for effectively managing a variety of natural disasters like floods, fires, droughts, and mudslides through accurate forecasting and extensive response measures.
He suggested that these strategies could be beneficial in other Asian countries. Dr. Saviz Sehat Kashani, a meteorologist from Iran, was impressed by Chongqing's ability to provide daily, weekly, and monthly forecasts, noting that in the context of developing countries that often lack such advanced forecasting and warning systems.
Experts from the meeting also toured Chongqing's meteorological facilities, including the Chongqing Meteorological Service and Chongqing Meteorological Science and Technology Park. These visits provided insights into the role of digital technology in Chongqing's meteorological operations, early warning systems, and disaster risk management.
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