Prof Sani Mashi, DG /CEO NiMet
*As warming trend in Nigeria to become 11/2 higher than global trend
By Adelola Amihere
As the world over celebrates the World Metereological Day amidst the Corona virus pandemic , the Nigerian Metereological Agency NiMet has called for an urgent need to improve forecasting, monitoring and management of water supplies and to tackle the problem of too much, too little or too polluted water.
The call to action was contained in a press statement signed by the Director General, NiMet Prof Sani Mashi in commemoration of the World Meteorological Day WMD with the theme, ‘Climate Change and Water- Count every drop, every drop Counts’.
Accordinbg to him, the underlying message of 2020 WMD is that we cant manage what we dont monitor and measure adding that water data collection and sharing underpin hydrological monitoring and forecasting and flood and drought early warning services.
“Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, an estimated 3 billion people worldwide lack basic hand washing facilities.
“The Growing demand for water increases the need for energy-intensive water pumping, transportation, and treatment, and has contributed to the degradation of critical water-dependent carbon sinks such as peatlands. Some climate change mitigation measures, such as the expanded use of biofuels, are exacerbating water scarcity.
“Therefore, climate and water data underpin the management of surface-water supplies and disaster risk reduction. These include calculations of the frequency and duration of heavy rainfall, the probable maximum precipitation and flood forecasting.”he stated
Highlighting some of the greatest impacts of climate change on water , Prof Mashi explained that the severity of climate change makes water too little or sometimes too much for human survival and comfort.
“This hence, pose serious threat to sustainable development and security. Unfortunately, there is much more coordinated international information and response on climate and water,” he added.
Furher quoting the report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) which indicates that warming trend in Nigeria and other part of the Sahara region would be one and a half times greater than global trend.
Prof Mashi pointed out that available meteorological data in Nigeria, had also indicated increasing air temperatures since about 1920s, in addition to recurring droughts since 1960s.
The DG, however reiterated the Agency’s commitment to the efforts to count every drop of water adding that “We therefore need to measure and monitor water well because it is only if we do the two that we can be able to manage water very well. We simply cannot manage what we don’t know much.”