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J&K joins hands with UK space agency for impact-based flood forecasting

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It will be useful for effective emergency planning, says LG

Jammu: The Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir has joined hands with a UK-based space agency for a collaborative project on impact-based flood forecasting, an official spokesman said on Friday.

The National Space Innovation Programme (NSIP), undertaken by HR Wallingford in collaboration with Oxford University, Sayers & Partners (SPL) and D-Orbit, is an initiative that supports collaborative projects between UK-based organisations and international partners, he said.

It is a big step taken by the J&K administration which will help to predict fluvial flood risks in terms of expected loss to life, injuries to people, building collapse, infrastructure disruption and economic damage, the spokesman said.

At present, there is no such effective impact-based flood forecasting mechanism in Jammu and Kashmir, he added.

Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha said the international collaboration adds specific value in helping analyse past flood events and identifying relationships between predicted floods and their impact.

The mechanism will predict the impact on people, their houses, crops, livestock, and transport routes, thereby mitigating many of the challenges people face during flood events, he added.

“Having impact-based forecasts of flood risk will be useful for efficient and effective contingency planning and swift evaluation of severity for necessary response,” Sinha said.

A recent report has put India among the 10 most disaster-prone countries in the world and ranked floods as a climate related hazard posing the greatest risk to the people. India has numerous flood forecasting systems that provide predictions of water levels and flows but not their impact in terms of loss of life, damage to buildings, critical infrastructure and agriculture.

In J&K, there is no effective impact based flood forecasting mechanism in place as such.

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