For a traditional fisherman on a small boat or a canoe, the state of the sea and the sky makes all the difference – fish or no fish, safety or risk to life. To contribute to safe and better fishing, we disseminate regular forecasts from government agencies on weather, wind, waves, currents, and fishing zones. Over small loudspeakers on the coast, on the Internet, over a free phone number, by word of mouth.
Then we listen to the fishers – what their own forecast is, what is it like out there in the sea when they go to fish everyday. We try to spot where these responses are coming from using the fishers’ own GPS sets. We process and give this feedback to scientists at the India Meteorological Department (IMD), Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services (INCOIS) and other relevant scientific bodies – making a regular two-way communication possible.
The fishers get a chance to tell forecasters and scientists about their expectations and experiences, and help them fine-tune their forecasts and research. In turn, the fishers get regular and more reliable information. We are trying to develop a ‘campus-to-community model’ of weather and climate knowledge sharing.