Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) on Thursday called on central government agencies to improve data sharing with the Central Weather Bureau (CWB) to mitigate damage caused by natural disasters, and assist farms and fisheries.
The nation’s limited area and diverse terrain makes weather forecasting and analysis crucial to water conservation, harvesting and event planning, Su said after the bureau gave a presentation at a weekly Cabinet meeting in Taipei.
Government agencies should collaborate more closely with the bureau, which in turn should disseminate useful data collected to the agencies and the public, he added.
Weather forecasting in Taiwan rates well internationally, but the bureau should continually improve the application of weather data by, for example, predicting reservoir levels to determine when to open floodgates or tracking typhoons to harvest crops before they hit to avoid flood damage, he said.
The data derived from weather forecasts are also essential to the nation’s offshore fisheries, Su added.
In the spirit of “paying tribute to the mountains,” a policy that he has introduced over the past year, Su said that accurate and timely weather forecasts are crucial for those assessing the risks of going mountain climbing or engaging in water activities.
Council of Agriculture Minister Chen Chi-chung (陳吉仲) said that the council has been the “greatest benefactor” of weather forecasts, which help farmers safeguard more than NT$1 billion (US$33.9 million) in agricultural products each year.
For example, thanks to weather data, the council could warn farmers that a southwesterly jet stream would bring many downpours, he added.
Meteorological data, when combined with big data, the Internet of Things and 5G applications, could contribute to improving disaster mitigation, as well as prevention and relief, Minister of Transportation and Communications Lin Chia-lung (林佳龍) said.
The bureau could aim to employ such technology to provide agencies with customized weather data, he said.
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