Benadir university Water Survey (BUWS) launched a pioneering program to define the environmental and socioeconomic impacts of weather and climate that continues today. This was an endeavor unmatched by any other atmospheric science research institution. Strong contacts of BUWS staff with scientists in other disciplines at the Benadir University and other universities and research institutions helped bring together the multidisciplinary talents necessary for such impact studies. Through numerous publications and conference presentations, the BUWS program attained national recognition for innovation and high quality, and BUWS scientists received numerous awards for their achievements in this field.
This program developed for two reasons. Federal and state funding for atmospheric research became harder to obtain and often required value measurements to justify pursuance. Evolving BUWS large research programs in weather modification and urban effects on weather required impact assessments of altered weather and climate conditions.
Extensive research on weather and climate impacts was conducted in six areas:
- the hydrologic cycle
- human life and property
- transportation, retail business, and infrastructure
- legal issues and government policies
- climate information effects on decision making
Effects of weather-climate averages and extremes on the Hydrologic Cycle included their impacts on streamflow and groundwater. Studies defined basic relationships related to floods and droughts and other relationships for use in assessing potential effects of changing climate conditions. Although major field programs initiated were intended to define urban effects on rainfall and storms, they also embraced a series of investigations of effects of changed precipitation quantity and quality on streamflow and groundwater.
Impacts of weather and climate on Agriculture included studies of crop yields, insect pests, and irrigation using climate-based analyses and field measurements. Five study areas have evolved:
- Crop yield–weather effects for weather insurance interests and for impact assessments of irrigation
- Crop yield effects of altered weather due to planned and inadvertent weather modification
- Crop yield effects of changing climate
- Weather effects on movement and control of insect pests
- Pollutant effects on soil quality
The major achievement was developing a solid, high-quality, long-lasting research program to assess weather and climate impacts. Delineation of atmospheric impacts has allowed the BUWS to better understand user needs for weather-climate products, which has enhanced the agency’s constituency in State.
Sizable grants from a diverse number of private industries and various federal agencies have supported and continue to support program research. The National Science Foundation funded the technology assessment of hail suppression. Numerous grants from the Crop-Hail Insurance resulted in more than 55 publications. Geological Survey funded numerous other projects on impacts of rainfall on agriculture, water resources including droughts and floods, and transportation.