Bhubaneswar: A three-day international conference on thunderstorm lightning in tropics (ICTLT) will kick-off on Thursday at the SOA University here. Around 200 scientists, academicians, operational researchers, planners and stakeholders at different levels coming from across the globe are attending the global meet.
Official statistics over the last five decades revealed that lightning caused around 3,000 deaths in the country annually accounting for about 39 per cent of all natural disasters. Of these, an average of 400 lightning related casualties occurred in Odisha alone.
Science and Technology Minister Badrinarayan Patra will inaugurate the conference this evening.
Hence, the conference aims to reduce the adverse impact of these extreme weather phenomena and develop community adaptation strategies and also seek to address these issues and recommend measures for adaptation and mitigation of such extreme events for sustainable development.
The global meet is jointly being organised by Centre for Environment and Climate (CEC), SOA, and Odisha State Disaster Management Authority (OSDMA). It will conclude on January 19.
Several organisations like the Earth Network of USA, Bhubaneswar chapter of Indian Meteorological Society (IMS), Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM), Pune and RIMES, Bangkok were supporting the event.
On Wednesday, addressing a press conference, Special Relief Commissioner Bishnupada Sethi said recommendations of the conference for appropriate intervention for reducing loss of life and property due to such natural hazards will impact not only Odisha but also the entire country.
Sethi said Mayurbhanj, Balasore, Ganjam, Keonjhar, Cuttack, Sundargarh and Bhadrak were among the districts which registered the most number of lightning strikes and casualties.