Use weather outlooks to minimise disaster impacts: Official

Papua New Guinea Government authorities must start using weather forecast outlooks effectively to minimise the impacts of natural disasters.

The Regional Integrated Multi-Hazard Early Warning System (RIMES) highlights the importance of seasonal weather outlooks in planning for natural events like El Nino and flooding. 

RIMES institutional development specialist, Ruby Policarpio, says responsible authorities must start using information on weather outlooks more effectively to prepare for disasters.

Policarpio said while there have been repeated impacts of El Nino and flooding in the region, PNG still does not have effective recovery efforts and more importantly, disaster preparedness.

She said the country needs to start learning from past experiences and work towards preparing well to minimise the disaster impacts.

“All sectors of development, including agriculture, infrastructure and health, must utilise weather information to prepare for natural hazards.

“Every event is different but there’re significant impacts in previous events that can lead to a better understanding of the next event.

“PNG needs to close the gaps in this area,” Policarpio said.

She added that when anticipatory mechanisms are in place then preparedness measures can be done so that the impacts are minimised.

Quintina Naime