PNG Weather Service set to transform

PORT MORESBY – The PNG National Weather Service (NWS) is set to transform its focus from the more traditional sciences of meteorology to tailoring itself within national sectors if it is to create a return on investment.

Director of the NWS Samuel Maiha referred to the undertaking currently afoot to give the organisation a much more visible standing in the country.

“We are recognising the need to go from science to services,” Maiha said.

“It is about embedding ourselves as an organisation so that we are able to demonstrate the value of the government investment in national weather service.”

“It is no longer time for making measurements of rainfall and temperature and that kind of thing, but more so having the national weather service represent the returns on investment.”

He said moving the transformation forward would only take place with partnerships such as those in sectors like agriculture, energy, and water, whilst at the same time not compromising the weather service’s traditional role of disaster risk reduction.

“Our passionate motivation is to create a one stop shop on disaster risk. When we talk about risk, food security is a very important risk that we are well and truly aware of besides the traditional services of the NWS,” he said.

“We have got to change the way we do things so we want to work and be partner with the agriculture sector, water sector, and energy sector with tourism realising of course that these industries and sectors have all this time been resilient on their own but in a very amicable way telling them that climate change and variability age the best way forward is to engage in a climate informed way.”

He said current initiatives have NWS engaged with the UN Development Programme in terms building observation systems in the country.

“The country does have issues with ground based infrastructure so we are looking at partnerships in terms of securing the instrumentation.

“We are at the stage that we shouldn’t be giving you a service we think is important, I think a service you require is one that you will demand,” Maiha said.

He said the organisation intends to introduce bulletins co-produced with other sectors in the within the agriculture space.

“These are not just that are owned not just by the National Weather service but by the sector and the NWS and it is able to benefit the agriculture sector in this age of climate change and climate variability,” he said.