Workshop: The importance for Hydro-Met policy was evident when more than half of the stakeholders failed to turn up at a day-long stakeholder consultation workshop on National Hydro-Meteorological Services Policy for Bhutan in Thimphu yesterday.
The resource persons from Finland waited for more stakeholders to turn up but only eight showed up for the consultation meeting.
The chief of Hydrology Division of Department of Hydro-Met Services (DHMS), Karma Drupchu, said that in recent years, Hydro-Met services has become important as the services are required by many agencies for planning, development and monitoring. “In the long run, there will be a need for a policy,” he added.
DHMS is currently facing challenges related to collecting data, processing, translating and communicating because of lack of National Hydro-Meteorological Services Policy.
Karma Drupchu said that because of lack of Hydro Met Services Policy, the department has to go through cumbersome procedures to get jobs done like communication system and data translation, among others. “It is important to have some kind of equipment standardisation once all required stations are established. The policy will not only help the department but also other sectors that require our services.”
The resource person from Finland, Jenni Latikka, presented the objectives and activities of the project – Strengthening Hydro-Meterological Services for Bhutan (SHSB).
SHSB is cooperation between Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI) and DHMS for the duration of 36 months. It started in May 2013.
Jenni Latikka said that the purpose of the project that is funded by Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland is to improve capacity of DHMS to manage and produce high quality weather information and services.
The improved Hydro-Meteorological Services in the country will benefit many sectors in the country, Jenni Latikka said. “Among other sectors, two important income-generating sectors, hydropower and tourism, will have direct benefits.”
If information is successfully disseminated and used, potential societal and economic benefits to farmers, communities and society will be high. Moreover, efficient early warning system will allow the country to respond to natural threats like Glacier Lake Outburst Floods.
The consultation workshop was organised by DHMS in collaboration with FMI
By Dechen Tshomo