FAO in Laos

Province ,District officers learn Laos Climate Service for Agriculture (CSA)

Farmers and experts across Lao PDR have easier access to more detailed and better quality agro-metrological weather forecasts providing information on the implications for their crops thanks to Laos Climate Service for Agriculture (CSA) and related training supported by FAO.

10/12/2020

Farmers and experts across Lao PDR have easier access to more detailed and better quality agro-metrological weather forecasts providing information on the implications for their crops thanks to Laos Climate Service for Agriculture (CSA) and related training supported by FAO.

Sharing this knowledge nationwide was the purpose of the first of a program of two-day training sessions that National Agriculture and Forestry Research Institute (NAFRI) is organizing across the entirety of Lao PDR.

The training was organized with FAO’s GEF-funded project "Strengthening agro-climatic monitoring and information systems to the adaptation to climate change and food security in Lao PDR" (SAMIS). SAMIS's objectives include to helping to raise capacities, motivation and productivity in daily agro-meteorology activities in the Lao PDR.

The training was attended by National Agriculture and Forestry Research Institute Deputy Director General Dr Xaysongkhame Phimmasone, Research Center for Climate Change Resilience in Agriculture Director, Dr Thavone  Inthavong and his trainer team with participants from Vientiane Province and Borlikhamxay Province namely, the Provincial Offices and District Officials from DONRE and DAFO offices.

 “This training is a good opportunity for all participants to learn new knowledge, especially the application of meteorological and agro-meteorological information for agricultural production, which will help farmers to reduce or avoid the effects of climate variability and change on their field production,” NAFRI Director-General Dr Saysongkham Phimmasone said.

SAMIS Project Coordinator Dr. Monica Petri, said the NAFRI team had been able to define a very specialized and innovative program for training, adding essential information about more complex modeling, including the Dynamic Crop Calendar, and the advancement of Farmer Field Schools to focus on climate adaptation.

The developments strengthen field level and support Lao farmers as they confront climate change, she said.

“FAO and partners are strengthening efforts to support Lao PDR in climate change resilience with multiple actors and in various capacity development activities.”

“All stakeholders have a critical role in the development of Lao PDR so that farmers have more food security.” Dr Monica Petri said.

Involving local experts, the training offered the chance for participants to become better informed and engaged with this innovative methodology, new and useful information and techniques.

The training has two objectives, learn how to use LaCSA and learn how upload data in LaCSA. 

The LaCSA system provides rainfall and temperature seasonal forecast as well as crop calendar and pest and disease to farmers in near-real-time (once per week) during the crop season. The LaCSA system is an initiative of the Department of Meteorology and Hydrology in MONRE with the support of many entities in MAF, including NAFRI.

Trainees were updated on the latest regarding agro-meteorology and LaCSA for the benefit of farmers. Local level technical staff learned the latest on agro-meteorology, and how to use it in the field.

About uploading input data in the LaCSA, trainees learned how to prepare crop recommendations, and pest and disease modeling used in agro-meteorological systems. Station staff received training on collecting additional agronomical data used in the modeling in LaCSA.

The Lao National Lao National Radio also demonstrated broadcasts of agro-met forecasts via Village Loudspeakers. The Plant Protection Center from the Department of Agriculture was also involved with a lesson in pest and diseases.

Strengthened connectivity between MONRE and MAF is considered one of the benefits, Dr Petri said.

The LaCSA system is available at http://147.46.250.219:8081/ with a new user-friendly interface that can be visualized in smartphones easily.

This tool is produced by the Department of Meteorology (DMH) and regular updates are available at the Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/samisdmh.

All information is summarized in a user-friendly format and provided free of charge as weekly or monthly bulletins.