Making the most of improved, accessible climate information

Participants are introduced to automatic weather station. Photo: Oumar Diop, AMAP

Participants are introduced to automatic weather station. Photo: Oumar Diop, AMAP

In a first of its kind in Mali, the Joint Agro-Meteorological Services Incubator (JAMSI) has been launched to build the capacity of the Mali National Weather Agency (Mali Meteo) to deliver improved climate services to farmers.

The objectives of this initiative are to:

  • Improve Mali Meteo’s historical climate (rainfall and temperature) data through development of gridded data sets created by combining quality-controlled station data with satellite retrievals and other proxies;
  • Improve seasonal prediction as well as physical understanding of current trends related to the sub-seasonal distribution of rainfall;
  • Build the capacity of Mali Meteo to provide high quality climate services and explore options for leveraging its capabilities to provide climate information to the public and private sectors in Mali.
  • The availability of climate data will be improved by combining quality controlled data from the national observation network, which is very sparse over many parts of the country, with satellite estimates for rainfall and elevation maps, and reanalysis products for temperature.

As part of the JAMSI launch, six automatic weather stations were offered to Mali Meteo. “Implementation of the incubator activities will strengthen the capabilities of Mali Meteo, in the analysis and interpretation of weather forecasts at different levels, in relation to historical climate data, to provide climate services to help growers in their decision making. Establishment of a joint agro meteorological services incubator, will enable us to provide different users with reliable weather and climate information,” said Mr Djibrillah A Maïga, Director General, Mali Meteo. He thanked ICRISAT and other partners for the automatic weather stations and computers, saying that they will support the modernization of meteorological data collection in Mali.

JAMSI is a unique partnership between a national weather and hydrology agency and a CGIAR center. For Dr Mathieu Ouédraogo, representing the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS), Africa, “JAMSI is a great opportunity to capacitate the emerging national climate services, which closely reflects the philosophy of ‘Capacitating African Smallholders with Climate Advisories and Insurance Development (CASCAID)’ project and that of the overall theme of CCAFS on climate management. It will not only strengthen Mali Meteo’s network of terrestrial observations, but also catalyze synergies between public sector, private operators and non-governmental organizations who provide value added services towards intensified and sustainable agriculture.”05

According to Dr Ramadjita Tabo, Regional Director, West and Central Africa, ICRISAT, public and private agro-meteorological services are an important component in the provision of advisory support services to smallholders and agricultural enterprises. “For a long time we have witnessed the capacity and know-how of farmers. When supported with scientific innovations, favorable policies and strong partnerships, it can enhance their productivity and revenues while improving the resilience of their lands and livelihoods.”

JAMSI was launched on 10 June as part of the CASCAID project.

Project: Capacitating African Smallholders with Climate Advisories and Insurance Development (CASCAID) Partners: University of Ghana, International Research Institute for Climate and Society (IRI), Manobi, Washington State University, Agrhymet Regional Centre, World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF), University of Reading, UK, African Institute for Mathematical Sciences (AIMS), national meterological services and ICRISAT. Investor: CCAFS CGIAR Research Program: CCAFS

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