KNUST, EU build data base for accurate weather

BY: Daniel kenu

The meteorology and climate science unit of the physics department of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), with support from the European Union (EU), is helping to build an improved database capable of  forecasting weather accurately for the country.

The unit, which is responsible for training the country’s meteorologists, seeks to build reliable statistical database with narrow margins of error. The move is also expected to help monitor effectively the effects of climate change on the country.

The project, which is themed, ‘Dynamic-Aerosol-Chemistry-Cloud interaction in West Africa (DACCIWA)’, is a 7th frame EU-funded project that would in addition conduct extensive fieldwork in south-western Africa, collect high quality observations and anthropogenic emissions and assess their impact on health, ecosystem and the climate.

A Senior Lecturer and Coordinator of the Unit and a Ghanaian scientist working on the project, Dr Leonard K. Amekudzi, said the campaign would provide an opportunity for both undergraduate and postgraduate students, third and final-year MPhil students and two doctorate students of the Meteorology and Climate Science unit of KNUST to enhance their capacities and position themselves for new dimensions in that field of study.

He said there were presently about 15 undergraduates, three MPhil and doctorate students participating in the measurement campaign.

Dr Amekudzi told the Daily Graphic after one of unit’s field campaigns that the development would provide a wide range of modelling activities that would allow for an assessment of all relevant physical and chemical processes that would go to improve the monitoring of climate and atmospheric compositions in order to make Ghana’s weather predictions better.

The measurements taken by DACCIWA are to be integrated into an existing atmospheric, satellite, radar meteorology and atmospheric physics courses as a means of improving   knowledge.

Dr Amekudzi noted that as a result of the massive economic and population growth and urbanisation, human activities on nature in southern West Africa were expected to triple by the year 2030.

Under the circumstances, the DACCIWA project is to deliver a comprehensive scientific assessment of the climate change situation and actively guide sustainable future planning and policy making for West Africa and beyond.