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to improve agriculture productivity despite variations in local weather conditions.
WOTR’s concept of Agro-meteorology uniquely combines locale-specific Met-advisories and Agro-advisories that provide timely information to farmers so that they can plan their agricultural activities accordingly.
What problem is being addressed?
Agriculture is weather dependent at the local level. Yet, currently, farmers do not have access to reliable locally relevant meteorological and agricultural information by which to plan and manage their farming operations. Information presently available is based on inputs from weather stations that are located at taluka places and which are manually obtained. In the monsoon-driven weather system that is ours, local agro-meteorological conditions, especially rainfall, vary within even a kilometer; and such distantly located weather stations are not able to provide data that can generate locale-specific knowledge and advisories. In earlier days, before technology drove our lives, the elders of the village planned their agriculture activities based on how they sensed the forthcoming weather and what they observed in the surrounding flora ( plants and trees) and fauna ( insects, birds and animals). Most of this indigenous knowledge is now lost.
It is, thus, important to retrieve, document, analyse, utilize and disseminate practices that are promising and useful.
The Agro-meteorology component of WOTR Climate Change Adaptation project ensures:
- Local weather data is available to the farmers.
- Local community understands and uses weather information for agriculture planning and management.
- Agro-advisories are provided based on local weather data.
How it works?
WOTR is partnered by the India Meteorological Department (IMD) in Agro-Meterology efforts. The IMD guides WOTR in weather station installations and weather predictions.
Automated Weather Stations have been installed in the project villages. One automated weather station (AWS) has been installed at IMD’s observatory for verification of AWS data output with actual observations by India Meterological Department (IMD). Based on this, IMD will provide locale-specific weather predictions.
Simultaneously, interested youth in the villages have been trained to read the met-data and display them on daily weather information boards installed at prominent places. This helps people be informed about local weather conditions.
Agro-advisories based on local weather conditions are prepared by in-house agri-experts from WOTR and are disseminated in the villages so that farmers can make informed decisions.
A database of crop specific information – major pest and disease incidences under specific weather conditions, cultural practices of controlling pest and diseases, general agri-management practices, and crop calendars – provides back-end support.
These initiatives and interventions are funded by Swiss Agency for Development Co-operation (SDC) and NABARD.