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Daily Times

Published Date: Jan 7, 2014

Experts for revival of Climate Change Ministry

Environmental experts on Monday stressed the need to develop proper fog
forecasting and monitoring system, along with the revival of Ministry of
Climate Change and relocation of traffic during fog hours. 
They
were speaking in a seminar on "Fog Frequency across South-Asia: A
Climate Change Perspective" was held by Sustainable Development Policy
Institute, Islamabad.
Dr Faisal Saeed Syed, Assistant Professor,
Department of Meteorology, COMSATS Institute of Information Technology
shared his study, which was conducted on the climatology, inter-annual
variability and trends in fog occurrence over the period 1976-2010,
using observational data from 82 stations distributed across India and
Pakistan.
He said fog covered an extensive area, approximately 3,000
km from Pakistan to Bangladesh across north India from west to east,
running parallel to the Himalayas. The fog variability over the region
is likely to be governed by some large scale phenomenon on the
inter-annual time scale.
He said according to the study the fog
frequency had increased more than three times in the last 35 years and
this increase shows different regimes with respect to both mean and
variance.
Talking about the methodology of his study, Dr Faisal
said,” We detect the fog in ERA-Interim three hourly, surface and model
level forecast data, using the concept of cross over temperature and
boundary layer stability. The gradual increasing trends are also found
in specific and relative humidity over the region, which is highly
correlated with observed and detected fog.”
Addressing the seminar,
Azmat Hayat Khan, Director (Drought Monitoring & Early Warning
Centre, Islamabad) said the climatic shift posed serious threat to South
Asian regions by affecting their agriculture, livelihood, and
economies. The situation demands immediate policy actions along with
measures to protect agriculture and health of people, he added.
Shakeel
Ramay, Senior Researcher, SDPI, said the burning of low quality of coal
was causing smog not only in Pakistan but in India as well. He
suggested that research institutes and meteorological department should
start working with provincial governments to solve the issue.