Following the Ghana workshop in November 2018, this week sees the second African SWIFT Stakeholder Workshop taking place in Dakar, Senegal. The two-day workshop is hosted by SWIFT partners, Agence Nationale de l’Aviation Civile et de la Météorologie (ANACIM) and is organised by ANACIM and the Centre for Ecology & Hydrology (CEH). As part of African SWIFT Work Package 1, ‘User engagement’, these two SWIFT partners are currently working to improve weather forecasting and warning systems, to help meet the needs of emergency responders and important sectors in Senegal such as agriculture and fisheries. The SWIFT project is keen to engage key stakeholders early in the programme to ensure that stakeholder experience and needs can be used to inform the design of new forecasting techniques, products and services.
Severe weather in the Sahel, such as the 2009 and 2012 floods in Dakar, is often due to intense rain from convective storms, and the recent increase in the number of severe weather events appears to be linked to global warming. This climate change signal indicates that the socio-economic impacts on sectors like agriculture and fisheries are likely to become even more devastating in the coming years. The central aim of the Dakar workshop is to ensure that such weather forecast users can take appropriate action in response to weather warnings issued by national meteorological services. The SWIFT workshop is attended by the Director and forecasters from national meteorological services, high level and technical representatives from key sectors within Senegal, including disaster management, agriculture and fisheries, as well as stakeholders from other climate services initiatives in Senegal including WMO Global Framework for Climate Services (GFCS), and Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery Senegal (GFDRR).
Anticipated outcomes from the workshop include:
- A better understanding of the impacts of weather by forecasters in national meteorological services, leading to refinement of weather warnings and services.
- An improved understanding of the uncertainties and issues involved in issuing weather services (i.e. warnings) by users of the forecasts.
- Enhanced engagement (during the forecasting of an event) between the users and producers of weather services.
The Dakar workshop is second in a series of four SWIFT Stakeholder Workshops taking place across tropical Africa. In the coming weeks we will report on further events due to take place in Nigeria and Kenya.
Organisations involved in the African SWIFT Stakeholder Workshop in Dakar, Senegal include:
- ADM Agence de Développement Municipale
- ANACIM Agence Nationale de l’Aviation Civile et de la Météorologie
- ARD Agence Régionale de Développement
- CEH Centre for Ecology and Hydrology
- CSE Centre de Suivie Ecologique
- DEEC Direction de l’Environnement et des Etablissements classes
- DGPI Direction de la Prévention et de la Gestion des Inondations
- DGPRE Direction Générale de la Planification et des Ressources en Eau
- MRUHCV Ministère du Renouveau Urbain, de l’Habitat et du Cadre de Vie
- MWG Multi-disciplinary Working Group
- CLPA leaders of the local artisanal fishers’ council