India urges WMO to improve agromet services
Monday, 30 October 2006, 08:00 Hrs
New Delhi: India's Minister of Science and Technology Kapil Sibal on Monday urged the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) to provide better weather advisories to farmers and help them improve farm production.
The agromet services are meant to keep farmers informed about the impact of weather conditions on various crops and enable them to make informed decisions.
Unfortunately, most countries lack even the basic infrastructure to deliver such services, Sibal said at the 14th Session of WMO Commission for Agricultural Meteorology (CAgM-XIV) being held here.
The commission, holding its sitting in India for the first time, is to discuss various issues like strengthening information and dissemination networks including monitoring and early warning systems and management of natural and environmental resources for sustainable agricultural development.
Sibal urged the WMO "to take up the challenge to provide the farmers the agromet information to meet the needs and dreams of humanity".
He said the agromet services could solve the challenges facing the farming sector of doubling the agriculture production to match demands of the rising population.
"Agriculture is a global issue and needs a global outlook to solve the problems pertaining to it. The dissemination of information directly to the farmers is a big challenge and there should be sustained efforts to meet this problem," Sibal said.
The minister stressed the need for farmers to receive weather information in their own language.
He also urged the WMO to study issues relating to the impact on global warming.
WMO Secretary General M. Jarraud said the application of science and technology in providing weather predictions is highly necessary.
"New methodologies will help in reducing the hardships of the farming community," he said, stressing that agriculture is fully dependent upon the weather conditions.
Indian scientist Joseph Pichamuthu was awarded the 20th Professor Dr. Vilho Vaisala Award at the function for his research paper on the runway visibility. The award carries $10,000 and a medal.
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