From 20 to 22 February 2018, Stephen Mutimba, from our Climate Information Prize (CIP) team, attended the 13th Kenya Meteorological Society (KMS) International Conference on Meteorological Research, Applications and Services.
The workshop, which took place in Eldoret, Kenya, aimed to create understanding of weather and climate extremes, with a sharp focus on causes, monitoring, manifestations and implications for the country’s social and economic fabric.
Participants were over 250, including the Governor of Uasin Gishu County, the Director of the Climate Change Department at the University of Nairobi, County Meteorological Directors, KMS Director and Kenya Meteorological Department (KMD) Deputy Director. The Head of Weather Services from South Africa and representatives from the World Meteorological Organisation, Met Office, Brookside, University of Nairobi Met Department and Red Cross attended as well.
We shared our insights into how to encourage innovation in the dissemination and communication of climate information to build resilience, giving an overview of the CIP and highlighting milestones achieved so far.
CIP, now in its third stage, the Tekeleza prize, incentivises the development of innovative solutions to make climate information more useable and accessible for vulnerable individuals, households and communities in Kenya. CIP also creates awareness of the importance of climate information as it is key to understanding current and future climate-related shocks and causes, and forms the cornerstone of any adaptation strategy.
The presentation, which can be downloaded here, was enthusiastically received, with participants willing to learn more about the Tekeleza prize.
Five key insights
- The need was reaffirmed for scientific organisations, institutions and universities in the meteorological field to simplify climate information and services and package them in ways that ensure better exchange of knowledge and application by local communities.
- Meteorological knowledge, especially in the form of climate information, should be a core component of early warning systems. This would help to build resilience to extreme events, increase food security and alleviate poverty.
- CIP's presence in such conferences is crucial to reach out to as many potential stakeholders as possible.
- There is a high demand for high-quality climate information and services by farmers and other end users, including organisations such as the Red Cross.
- CIP's collaboration with KMS and KMD is vital to ensure sustainability and uptake once the prize draws to a close.
Our plan for the future is to deepen our engagement with organisations such as the Red Cross, Brookside, KMS and KMD to introduce some initiatives developed by the Tekeleza prize candidates. This would be beneficial for both parties and ensure that CIP’s impact will last well beyond the competition, which ends in July 2018.
Cover photo by Dan Gold made available on Unsplash.com