West Bengal to get two new Doppler radars to monitor extreme weather conditions
The C-Band radar, which would be installed at Malda in north Bengal, would have a range of 350 – 400 km. It would be able to take imagery of entire West Bengal, most parts of Bihar and almost entire Bangladesh
The India Meteorological Department (IMD) will install two Doppler weather radars, one in the coastal areas of south Bengal and a second in north Bengal, to monitor extreme weather events over the region, officials aware of the matter said.
The C-Band radar, which would be installed at Malda in north Bengal, would have a range of 350-400 km, said an official, adding it would be able to take imagery of entire West Bengal, most parts of Bihar and almost entire Bangladesh.
“This would improve weather forecasting and agriculture meteorology, more particularly in the north Bengal region,” said an IMD official.
The second in South Bengal would be installed in Diamond Harbour near Kolkata. This will be an X-band radar and cover cover 100 km, said the official.
This becomes important as recent studies suggest the frequency and magnitude of extreme weather events rising across the world and various parts of India due to global warming and climate change.
Data placed in the Lok Sabha in August 2021 revealed that at least 6,811 people were killed in India between April 2018 and March 2021 in hydro-meteorological disasters such as heavy rain, lightning, floods and cyclones. West Bengal topped the list of states with at least 964 such deaths, revealing the state’s vulnerability to extreme events.
“The IMD has signed two MoUs with ICAR-Central Institute for Subtropical Horticulture in Lucknow and Diamond Harbour Women’s University to install the two new radars in Malda and Diamond Harbour,” said an official.
At present, at least 37 DWRs are installed across India. Several states and UTs such as Delhi, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra, have three DWRs installed to monitor extreme weather events.