GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews/07 August) – The provincial government of South Cotabato is set to install an Automatic Weather Station (AWS) to properly monitor the province’s weather patterns, including possible weather or climatic disturbances that may hit the area.
John Lorca, disaster response coordinator of the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (PDRRMO), said Tuesday the installation of the AWS is part of the initiatives of the League of Provinces of the Philippines (LPP) to help prepare provincial governments against disasters and improve their disaster risk reduction mechanisms.
He said the provincial government received the AWS package through an initiative facilitated by the LPP and supported by the Union Bank, Aboitiz Power and Weather Philippines Foundation.
“This is an instrument that will enable us to have a real-time monitoring of our daily weather condition and forecasts,” he said.
Lorca said the AWS will be installed within the week atop the Finance Building of the provincial capitol in Koronadal City.
He said the AWS will be hooked up to a computer-based monitoring system that would be managed by the PDRRMO.
The AWS would provide various data on the area’s weather condition and patterns that would be updated on a regular basis, he said.
Lorca said the data gathered by the AWS would be automatically transmitted to a central server maintained by Weather Philippines Foundation and uploaded to the latter’s website.
“We will immediately know the actual or exact condition of our weather such as the heat intensity and rainfall volume. We may also track down later on the weather patterns in the area for the next three to five days,” he said.
A project briefer cited that the AWS is a “meteorological weather monitoring instrument that has the capacity to capture atmospheric and meteorological data such as rainfall, wind speed and direction, humidity, and temperature.”
It said the instrument, which was based on a technology developed by a company based in Switzerland, mainly senses, measures, and transmits meteorological data of weather conditions.
Analysis using the AWS will be done every hour and will be posted online for easy access, enhancing the local governments’ weather information system.
Celso Caballero, Weather Philippines Foundation general manager, earlier said their initiative was not meant to compete with the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) but to complement with its programs.
He said the Weather Philippines Foundation is currently working to provide within two years about 1,000 weather devices that would be linked up to a weather portal that could show seven days forecasts in three-hour intervals through its technology partner Meteomedia Philippines. (Allen V. Estabillo/MindaNews)