File image of a rain day in Sharjah used for illustrative purpose only Image Credit: Gulf News archive

Abu Dhabi: The upcoming International Rain Enhancement Forum (IREF) in Abu Dhabi will address water security risks, organisers National Centre of Meteorology announced today.

Under the patronage of Sheikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Court, NCM, through the UAE Research Programme for Rain Enhancement Science (UAEREP), is set to host the sixth edition of the Forum from January 24 to 26. Gathering leading global and national scientists and stakeholders, IREF will discuss the latest technological advances in rain enhancement research.

As a leading event tackling urgent water and sustainability issues worldwide, IREF provides a platform for discussion of the latest developments and efforts to find innovative solutions to water security issues through advancing scientific understanding and sharing knowledge in rain enhancement, while highlights the UAE’s position as a global hub in rain enhancement.

High stakes

Dr Abdulla Al Mandous, director of NCM and president of the Regional Association II (Asia) of the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO), said: “We are proud to host [IREF] as a means of strengthening international cooperation in this important field. The event serves as an excellent opportunity to bring together the scientific community to discuss the latest developments and technologies in rain enhancement domain. Through IREF, NCM demonstrates its continued commitment to supporting the Programme in its efforts to boost water security for the benefit of communities at high risk of drought and water stress around the world.”

In addition to discussing the latest progress on UAEREP’s 11 Awardee Projects, the Forum will examine the water security challenges in the global climate agenda, as well as the opportunities and challenges to implement rainfall enhancement models and technologies.

The Forum will cover new approaches and innovations for rainfall enhancement and regional and global developments in rainfall enhancement by hosting representatives from countries with operational rain enhancement programmes and projects and discussing significant lessons and success stories from across the globe.

As part of the agenda, university students will be offered the opportunity to present their innovative research projects to a group of world-renowned scientists in the fields of weather modification and rain enhancement.

The event will also see the announcement of the launch of the fight cycle of the UAEREP award along with in-depth discussion about the next cycle’s categories and priorities.

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Alya Mazroui, director of the UAE Research Programme for Rain Enhancement Science, said: “The latest edition of our Forum will allow participants to discuss new science and technologies as we work to drive novel research in the field. Therefore, I urge all interested scientists and technologists with the required expertise to join our quest to tackle global water security by maximizing the potential of this growing research area.”

She added: “Our agenda provides for three days of discussions that will give us an excellent opportunity to review the progress of our eleven Awardee Projects while also assessing the potential of research results from the new areas that focus on enhanced cloud formation.”

The UAE Research Programme for Rain Enhancement Science is a research initiative launched by the Ministry of Presidential Affairs of the UAE and managed by NCM. Through its activities, the Programme has forged strong ties with more than 1,800 researchers from over 800 institutions in 70 countries across 4 continents. With regard to new research, UAEREP has supported the publication of 84 scientific articles, the granting of 5 patents, and contributions to more than 100 conference proceedings.