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Expert calls for improved marine meteorology

By Xie Chuanjiao in Qingdao, Shandong and Li Hongyang in Beijing | (chinadaily.com.cn) | 2021-06-09

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The beach of Yongxing Island, a part of the Xisha Islands in the South China Sea. CHINA DAILY

A leading Chinese meteorologist on June 8 called for more efforts to improve the country's capability for marine meteorological services, to maintain marine security and interest of the nation.

Addressing a seminar in Qingdao, Shandong province, Zhang Renhe, an academician of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, said air-sea fluxes have a vital impact on weather and climate change but low observation in China has restricted meteorological forecasts, especially in marine areas.

The fluxes, or exchanges of energy and material between air and sea, are seen as an ocean climate indicator that tells how the sea affects climate and weather.

"Currently, Western countries dominate nearly all major ocean observations worldwide, except those along China's offshore areas. That will be a bottleneck on China's way to becoming a strong marine power," Zhang said at the seminar, which focused on scientific innovation in marine meteorology.

He said the country should establish its own marine meteorological observation network with self-developed technologies, including the BeiDou Navigation Satellite System.

"Scientific trial can be made in key areas first and results can be put into practice," he said.

The China Meteorological Administration said it has set up a marine observation network over coastal and offshore areas.

Meteorological satellites have formed a relatively complete observation system that provides services of forecasting and early warning of tropical cyclones, winds, fog and strong convection weather, the administration said.

At the seminar, the administration and the Qingdao government signed a cooperative agreement to jointly establish a marine meteorological research institute.