VIENTIANE, Feb. 4 (Xinhua) -- Lao government officials completed a three-week training course on advanced Geographic Information Systems, which was implemented by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) to enable them to undertake climate mapping and zoning.
The training course, funded by the Global Environment Facility, covered spatial analysis, geo-databases, network analysis, 3D analysis, and climate modeling, local Vientiane Times daily reported on Tuesday.
The course was made through collaboration between the Asian Institute of Technology and the Strengthening Agro-climatic Monitoring and Information Systems (SAMIS) project.
The 20 attendees came from the Department of Meteorology and Hydrology under Lao Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources responsible for data management, and the Department of Agricultural Land Management's modeling staff from Lao Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, according to the report.
Scientists and academics from the National Agriculture and Forestry Research Institute and the National University of Laos also attended, along with officials from the Department of Forestry.
A closing ceremony for the training course took place on Friday, led by Director General of the Department of Agricultural Land Management Nivong Sipaseuth, and Assistant FAO Representative to Laos Chanthalath Phongmala.
Speaking at the ceremony, Chanthalath said the course would enable specialists to prepare Laos' first climate atlas in collaboration with the Department of Meteorology and Hydrology.
This would also assist the Department of Agricultural Land Management as it begins preparations for agro-ecological zoning at the national level.
"This training aims to improve adaptation to climate change and food security in Laos under the auspices of the Strengthening Agro-climatic Monitoring and Information Systems (SAMIS) project," he added.
Laos' first climate atlas and national-level agro-ecological zoning are among the initiatives being prioritized.
The Department of Meteorology and Hydrology recently finalized the development of a database containing all Laos' relevant historical climate data. International experts from the SAMIS project are assisting government specialists to prepare the input database.
Post-training, a continued follow-up over six months, will assist experts in Laos as they produce the modeled spatial climate data that will later be included in the climate atlas, said the report.