NOAA- Saudi Partnership Agreement Introduction and Background
Established as a technical cooperation agreement, this NOAA and Saudi (Presidency of Meteorology and Environment – PME) partnership known as The Arsad Project fosters technology transfer and related technical training in meteorological and environmental protection. The NOAA and the PME are responsible for implementing this agreement and developing project activities that benefit both organizations.
NOAA’s meteorology and environmental protection cooperation with Saudi Arabia started in the mid 1970’s and in1982, NOAA signed a formal agreement with the U.S.-Saudi Joint Economic Commission (JEC) which the U.S. Department of the Treasury and the Saudi Minister of Finance and National Economy jointly managed. The JEC graduated in year 2000 and in March 2001, NOAA established its own international technical cooperation with PME in Meteorology and Environmental Protection. The main goal of this cooperation is to exchange technologies and advance Saudi Arabia in the science of meteorology and environmental management with the end result being to mitigate property damage and loss of lives from natural and environmental disasters.
Highlights of this Cooperation:
Trained forecasters in numerical weather prediction and delivered operational workstation Eta model so they could extend their forecasts from 1 to 5 days.
Assessed PME‘s meteorological and environmental activities to identify areas of excellence and areas requiring improvements.
Delivered and installed 5 automatic weather stations at venues visited by millions to take 24/7 pulse of the weather.
Trained PME on environmental management with emphasis on dredging, outfall, and hazardous waste disposal, which corrected harmful waste from contaminating coastal area.
Created and conducted workshops in environmental law and compliance.
Researched and implemented a broadcast meteorology “Weather Channel” in Saudi Arabia. Also, included educational and environmental protection broadcasts to inform the public on natural disasters in environmental protection and weather. This was the first National early warning system established in Saudi Arabia.
NOAA-SAUDI PUBLIC AWARENESS - EMERGENCY NOTIFICATION PROJECT:
Arsad Broadcast Meteorology Project: NOAA assisted PME with their broadcast meteorology project in an effort to keep the country of Saudi Arabia aware of potential threats from natural disasters. And this broadcast channel project will enhance public awareness of environmental protection standards and concerns in Saudi Arabia where the U.S. EPA and NOAA hope to involve other Middle East countries in this environmental awareness campaign.
NOAA- Saudi Numerical Weather Prediction Modeling Project
PME received the ETA workstation version. This modeling package was developed to promote the local use of numerical weather prediction (NWP) models and to achieve the following goals:
To improve the knowledge and use of NWP forecast models and issues at the local level.
To advance the forecasting process through an improved understanding of mesoscale atmospheric processes and the use of non-traditional diagnostic tools.
To increase participation among the Regional Offices and other agencies in developing and executing NWP studies to examine local forecast problems.
NOAA- Saudi Network Training and Improvement Project
Improved network capabilities in PME to advance technology and enhance products.
Network operations support was provided to PME to maintain and enhance forecast network systems.
NOAA- Saudi Improvement in Forecasting Project
Training in marine weather forecasting to improve shipping operation in Red Sea.
Safety and reliability for airlines and passengers in Saudi Arabia
Training on use of NWP to improve weather forecasting for 28 million people in Saudi Arabia