The GUY-DOM project strengthens national Early Warning Systems


Tune in at 7pm (tonight) 24th November 2021 for radio program on Early Warning System integration

Under the leadership of the Government of Dominica, and the support of the Government of Japan, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean’s GUY-DOM Project continues its Week of Activities to highlight its achievements to date through the voices and faces of its implementing partners and beneficiaries. Its focus today is on Early Warning Systems (EWS) as a preparatory measure in Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR). In partnership with Meteorological Office (MET), the Lands and Surveys Department, The Office of Disaster Management (ODM) and the Department of

Community Development, UNDP supports regional and national frameworks that emphasize the improvement and expansion of EWS systems in Dominica’s DRR efforts. Disaster Risk Reduction calls for a systematic effort to analyze and manage the casual factors of disaster and climate risk.

Early Warning Systems (EWS)

EWS systems generate and disseminate timely and meaningful warning information to enable communities to prepare for hazards. The project contributes to this endeavour by providing equipment, facilitating their harmonization, and training national focal points and communities in the use and maintenance of the equipment. To this end, The Dominica Meteorological Service (MET) and the Lands and Survey Division have been direct beneficiaries of hazard monitoring equipment.

Hydrometeorological equipment

The MET Service collects and monitors data on day-to-day changes in atmospheric conditions. Once analyzed this information communicates climate variability. The GUY-DOM project has provided the MET Office with up-to-date equipment for this purpose: synoptic automatic weather station, automatic weather station, automatic water level weather stations and wind display and hydrological current meters. This equipment enhances the capacity of the Dominica MET Service to provide timely warnings and data, which if followed by the public can keep communities safe and well prepared for pending disasters. These data can also be utilized by other sectors such as Agriculture, Tourism and Civil/public works to enhance risk management planning.

Geotechnical monitoring equipment

Because climate related disasters are spatial in nature, local intelligence is critical for effective disaster management. Hence, Geographic Information Systems (GIS) utilize relevant data from remote sensing

equipment to help with disaster risk management. In this regard the Lands and Surveys Division has been the recipient of hazard monitoring equipment in the form of web-based and Global Positioning Systems (GPS) technologies. These include PIVOT software, TSC5 data collectors, GEO7X and R12i receivers. The data collected through these instruments and applications will enhance the capacity of the Lands and Surveys Division in providing and supporting the integration of risk maps. The Lands and Surveys Division is legally responsible for: administration and disposal of all state lands; the conduct of all public surveys; establishing survey controls and updating maps of the country; the security of all state lands records and providing regulatory survey services.

Community Ownership

Several communities are exposed to multi-hazard impacts. For example, the Kalinago communities are exposed to hazards impacts first with the tropical cyclones as these cyclones move in an east to west direction. In Coulibistrie, Colihaut and Pointe Michelle the river dealt fatal blows to lives and property during Tropical Storm Erika and Hurricane Maria.  It  is  critical  therefore  that  communities understand early warning systems and are aware of how to prepare for disasters. Under the project, persons will be trained to use, maintain, and safeguard equipment installed in their communities, with the guidance of the authorizing state agencies.

In several communities hydrometeorological monitoring equipment is installed in the form of water level stations next to bridges and automatic weather stations in other areas. However, this EWS equipment is as good as the actions they catalyze, and so community awareness, ownership and safe keeping of the equipment cannot be overemphasized. As such, the GUY-DOM project will be conducting public awareness activities of the newly installed equipment. These activities will be targeted at the local communities including vulnerable farmers and fisherfolk, the media and government officers.

The GUY-DOM project supports the country’s effort in becoming the first climate resilient country in the world with the enhancement of this early warning systems equipment that prepares Dominicans for weather and non-weather-related risks and strengthens the capacity of government officers and communities in their use, their maintenance, and their ownership.

The GUY-DOM project is funded by the Government of Japan and implemented in partnership with the Government of Dominica.

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