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Observatory director on 2010 work programmes and climate change

23 March 2010

The Director of the Hong Kong Observatory, Dr Lee Boon-ying, introduced the major work programmes of the Observatory and reviewed its work last year at a press briefing today (23 March). He also talked about the trend of occurrence of extreme weather events in Hong Kong.

Dr Lee announced that the Observatory would launch several new services on the Internet today, including radar images within 128km (, Digital Weather Forecast webpages ( and My Observatory, a location-specific weather service ( providing weather data in finer details to meet users' needs.

He said that to enhance the Observatory operation during the typhoon season, the Observatory would, starting this year, alert relevant departments to make necessary preparations for specific low-lying areas vulnerable to flooding caused by storm surge.

Reviewing the work of 2009, Dr Lee said that part of the weather forecast skills developed for the East Asian Games had been applied to weather services for the public. This included the Wind Forecast for Wind Surfers website launched in January this year to provide site and time-specific weather forecasts for 10 local wind surfing hotspots. The One District One Station scheme was also successfully completed.

Regarding climate change, Dr Lee said that the recent cold weather which affected parts of the mid-latitudes in the northern hemisphere was normal short-term weather fluctuations. The long term global warming trend remained unchanged. In Hong Kong, under the influence of global climate change and urbanisation, both the mean temperature and the annual total rainfall at the Observatory Headquarters show a rising trend. He said, "In the 100 years between 1900 and 2000, the frequency of occurrence of heavy rain in Hong Kong has doubled."

Dr Lee said that six or less tropical cyclones were expected to affect Hong Kong this year, which was fewer than normal. The annual rainfall is forecast to be near normal (2200 to 2700 millimetres).

To celebrate the World Meteorological Day, the Hong Kong Observatory will be open to the public on Saturday and Sunday (27 and 28 March).

Please visit the following web page for the full text of the Director's speech at the press briefing:

Director of the Hong Kong Observatory Dr Lee Boon-ying introducing the Observatory's new Internet services to the media.
Director of the Hong Kong Observatory Dr Lee Boon-ying introducing the Observatory's new Internet services to the media.