The representatives of the ministries of agriculture, water resources, forestry committee, hydromet and other agricultural agencies of Uzbekistan discussed the development of climate information platform in Tashkent last Tuesday.
The seminar was conducted within the Central Asia Climate Information Platform project led by the International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA). The project is expected to make available comprehensive and up-to-date relevant data and information, linking with high-quality datasets from global, regional, and local sources, provide analytical tools and interfaces for the visualization and interpretation of data and information.
"Climate change is not only about changing weather patterns and erratic precipitation," said Dr. Chandrashekhar Biradar, principal agro-ecosystems scientist, ICARDA. "Its impacts range from agriculture, food production, natural resources management to clothing industry."
The seminar served as a consultation on the types of data to be included in the platform and who would be the end users. According to Dr. Akmal Akramkhanov, ICARDA, each agriculture-related institution in the country has its own data collection. However, they are not connected with each other. "This prevents us from developing a strategy to address the issues in the field," he said. "Our main goal is to connect the dots and merge available data in one place."
"At present, a large volume of data has been collected in the world," Dr. Biradar stated. "Through artificial intelligence and machine algorithms, we can process the 'Big Data' to generate valuable information for improved awareness and assessment of changing climate."
By Spring 2020, an online information system will be developed to provide public high quality data on climate variability, with the aim of facilitating climate change adaptation and mitigation decision making in Central Asia.
Originally initiated as the Regional Program for Sustainable Agricultural Development in Central Asia and Caucasus, ICARDA has been working in the region since 1998. The Program has been assisting the countries in developing the national research systems for sustainably increasing the productivity of crops and livestock through development, adoption and transfer of technologies; natural resource management, conservation strategies and socio-economic knowledge.