ReliefWeb, 7th May 2018

A wave buoy and temperature-monitoring mooring deployed on 2nd May off Fiji’s Coral Coast will provide ocean researchers, forecasters, mariners, surfers, and the public with real-time information about wave conditions and ocean temperatures. This information is critical to coastal early warning systems and to understanding the impact of ocean warming on coral reefs.

A team of ocean experts from the Pacific Community (SPC), the Fiji Meteorological Service, the Fiji Navy, the University of the South Pacific’s Centre for Environment and Sustainable Development (PaCE-SD, USP), and the French National Research Institute for Sustainable Development (IRD) teamed up on the deployment.

The mooring is a combination of a surface wave buoy, which is a key component of the Coastal Inundation Forecasting Demonstration Project in Fiji (CIFDP), and a subsurface array of temperature sensors, which is a component of the Coastal Oceanography in the Pacific, Risk and Adaptation project (COPRA).

“The new buoy is already providing us with vital wave information on the ocean state off the coast of Sigatoka,” reports Fiji Meteorological Service Director, Mr. Ravind Kumar. “This will greatly improve Fiji Met’s marine forecasting capability, and help us predict inundation events along the Coral Coast. For a comprehensive early warning system, Fiji needs more oceanographic buoys like this in other locations, so we hope this is just the beginning.”

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