APFM Newsletter No.23, July 2010

  Download (PDF): Newsletter No.23



Advisory Committee and Management Committee meetings.

IDRC in Davos, special session on Flash Flood Forecasting and Management,  a platform for the exchange of good practice.

Initial Workshop on Regional Flash Flood Guidance System – Black Sea and Middle East Regions, as Part of the Global Flash Flood Guidance System.

  Regional Training Course on Integrated Flood Management (IFM) in Ethiopia.


APFM Webpage Traffic and Statistical Information 2009/2010.



Advisory Committee and Management Committee meetings


The Associated Programme on Flood Management (APFM) Advisory Committee and Management Committee Meetings took place from 3 to 4 June 2010 in Geneva, Switzerland, to review the progress of the Programme activities for 2009/2010, as well as to discuss and approve the activity plan and budget for 2010/2011. The Committees expressed overall satisfaction with progress achieved by APFM towards advocating and implementing Integrated Flood Management practices.
Selected highlights of the 2010/2011 Activity Plan include:

+ Extending the operation of the HelpDesk for Integrated Flood Management;
+ Enhanced engagement of its Support Base Partners by organizing a dedicated workshop later in 2010;
+  Development of a suite of new flood management tools, including tools on “Guidelines on Flood Mapping”, and “Flood Proofing” and factoring climate change into flood management;
+ Continued implementation of regional and national training courses on Integrated Flood Management in various regions ;
+ Implementation of regional field demonstration projects (e.g. in the Zambezi Basin).

The Committees expressed their appreciation of the continued support provided to the APFM by the Governments of Japan and Switzerland and WMO for hosting the Technical Support Unit of the APFM and for taking the necessary steps to continue the Programme in the new phase from 2010 onwards. The Committee welcomed the proposal of the Global Water Partnership to actively support APFM and HelpDesk activities in Integrated Flood Management through involvement of its regional and national partners.



IDRC in Davos, special session on Flash Flood Forecasting and Management,  a platform for the exchange of good practice


APFM organized a special session on flash flood forecasting and management on 1st June 2010 during International Disaster and Risk Conference (IDRC) in Davos, Switzerland. IDRC Davos was convened to focus on the array of risks society is facing today and on effective strategies to manage and reduce these risks and disaster through knowledge and know-how exchange for the application of contemporary risk management strategies, tools and practical solutions. Flash floods are the most dangerous floods since they take a high toll on lifes and have a high destructive potential. The Special Session provided an excellent platform for interaction and the exchange of good practices between decision makers and forecasters.  The event was organized by APFM inviting Mr. Tokio Kusumi, the Mayor of Mitsuke-City, Japan for his keynote presentation on “Required duties for leaders at times of disaster” (PDF), and Mr. Rajesh Thapa from Nepal on “Integrated approach for flash flood prediction and management: A case study of Poiqu Bhotekosi Basin” (PDF), Mr. Bruno Rudolf from Germany on “Flash floods: Current practice and new developments in quantitative precipitation forecasting” (PDF), Mr. Konieczny Roman from Poland on “Flash flood management at the local level: to take control over the hazard” (PDF) and Mr. Wolfgang Grabs representing WMO on “Establishment of Flash Flood Guidance Systems – approach and implementation” (PDF). The discussion amongst speakers and the audience made it clear that effective decision making requires timely and accurate flash flood forecasting and guidance as well as local awareness of flash flood hazards. The participants recognized the existing gap between hydro-meteorological services issuing flash flood warnings and alerts and local decision makers who are expected to adequately respond to the warnings and alerts provided. The special session was well attended by a wide range of participants filling the session room almost to full capacity.


Initial Workshop on Regional Flash Flood Guidance System – Black Sea and Middle East Regions, as Part of the Global Flash Flood Guidance System.


The launching meeting of the Black Sea and Middle East regions component of the Flash Flood Guidance System was held in Istanbul, Turkey, on 29-31 march 2010, at the kind invitation of the Turkish State Meteorological Service. About thirty experts and representatives from the NMHSs of Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Iraq, Lebanon Turkey, Bulgaria and Romania (the latter two as observers) as well as from USAID, HRC-San Diego, NOAA and WMO attended the meeting.

Purpose of the project is to bring meteorological and hydrological communities to work closer in improving flash flood forecasts and response. Global data are ingested and quality checked and subsequently made available to regional centers, which in turn, with the additional specific hydro-meteorological knowledge of their region, will assist countries to identify the areas under threat. Local empirical knowledge will be added at each level to improve the quality of the products. Capacity building and integration with disaster management authorities are essential component of the project.

The purpose of the workshop was to gather the support of the countries to the project proposal, formulate recommendation on the further action towards its implementation and agree on the location of the Regional Centre. After three day of lively debate and fruitful exchange of ideas, the participants agreed that the implementation of the Black Sea and Middle East Flash Flood Guidance System (BSME-FFG) will have a significant impact on flash flood-induced disaster risk reduction, thereby saving lives and livelihoods. They agreed on the project general concept, its institutional framework led by a Steering Committee, and on the roles of responsibilities of the participants. Milestones for the first year of implementation were also established. The offer of the Turkish Meteorological Service to host the Regional Centre for the project was accepted unanimously. The Centre will also be able to host experts seconded from the NMHSs to participate in the development of the project products.

National disaster management agencies play a critical role in managing the threat of flash floods, therefore it was agreed that on the national level, links need to be established between them and the project that would guarantee the timely provision of flash flood guidance to disaster management agencies and other parties as identified by the national authorities.  In this connection the participants reaffirmed that reflect resolutions and practices of WMO should be the framework for sharing meteorological and hydrological data and information within the context of the project.



Training Course on Integrated Flood Management (IFM) in Ethiopia

The School of Civil and Water Resources Engineering of Bahir Dar University (based in the Amhara Region, near the Tana Lake) in association with WMO, Cap-Net and Nile IWRM-Net organized an international training on Integrated Flood Management (IFM) from 7 to 11 June 2010. This international training was held as a spin-off of the previous IFM training for the Nile Basin countries held in Nairobi from 23 to 27 November 2009.
The training was successfully held with the participation of both Ethiopian and 10 international participants from Burundi, Rwanda, Sudan, Tanzania, and Uganda. The Ethiopian participants included representatives of Bahir Dar and Addis Ababa Universities, as well as representatives of the Amhara Water Resource Development Bureau, of the Disaster Management and Food Security Sector (MOARD), and of the Mass Media Agency.



      APFM Webpage Traffic and Statistical Information 2009/2010

 During the Phase I of APFM, the APFM website was established as the central access point for information on flood management in order to:
• promote the IFM concept;
• disseminate APFM activities in adopting IFM, such as field demonstration projects (i.e. pilot projects) and compilation of good practices and lessons learned from various regions of the world;
• Provide for reference centre on flood management (i.e. a set of databases); etc.

The APFM website is continuously updated to meet these objectives. All publications and materials produced so far, information of latest events and flood management reference centre are made available on the website. Since the launch of APFM website in December 2004, the numbers of visitors have been steadily increasing. Several peaks of hits have been observed after major events such as international conferences and issue of new APFM newsletters. The steady rise in number of visitors is a clear indicator, that visitors tend to revisit the page, as otherwise the peaks around events would recede back to original values.


APFM Website During the last year:
• 15,403  Visits.
• 11,332  Absolute Unique Visitors.
• 37,223  Page views.
• 6,203  Material Download.

IFM HelpDesk Operational status:

• Total number of visits to the helpdesk: 1,661.
• Total number of downloaded tools: 1,740.
• New entries in the Reference Centre Database: 31.
• Number of requests received: 10.
• Number of discussions in the forum: 9.


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