In Africa, weather extremes such as storms, droughts and floods have severe impacts on communities. Every year, high-intensity weather events result in devastating losses of life and damages to land, property and infrastructure.
Improving the accuracy of weather forecasting is critical for people’s safety, and for key economic sectors including aviation, agriculture, energy, water and emergency response.
GCRF African SWIFT aims to deliver a step change in African weather forecasting capability and communication, from hourly to seasonal timescales, to protect the lives and livelihoods of African people while improving the economies of their countries.
GCRF African SWIFT was launched in 2017, and is a £9 million programme led by the National Centre for Atmospheric Science (NCAS) and funded by the Global Challenges Research Fund. The programme includes partners from universities and national meteorological services in Ghana, Kenya, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal and the UK.
African SWIFT meteorologists at the Kenya Meteorological Department are producing new sub-seasonal forecast products for the Kenya Electricity Generating Company, responsible for supplying more than 70% of Kenya’s electricity. In addition to keeping the lights on and costs low, the custom forecasts inform disaster management, and have allowed for the elimination of diesel generators, moving Kenya closer to renewable energy.
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