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Joint Media Release
Greg Hunt MP
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for the Environment and Heritage
Federal Member for Flinders
&
Senator Nigel Scullion
Senator for the Northern Territory

11 February 2005

Major investment in weather services for the NT


Greg Hunt MP, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for the Environment and Heritage and Senator Nigel Scullion today announced upgrades to Bureau of Meteorology infrastructure across the Northern Territory over the next two years.

Mr Hunt who has ministerial responsibility for the Bureau of Meteorology said major components of the upgrades were part of a $62 million federal commitment to ongoing weather service improvement for the Australian community and will be conducted over the next three years.

"These upgrades will improve the Bureau's capacity to monitor and forecast the weather and provide valuable local information about weather conditions across the Northern Territory," Mr Hunt said.

"Nobody could have fought harder for such upgrades than Nigel Scullion and Dave Tollner."

The upgrades include:

The AWS upgrades at these airports are being funded by the aviation industry.

The Bureau is also assessing the requirements for additional AWSs that will further contribute to meeting the needs of the local community for improved weather information.

Automatic weather stations monitor local weather conditions including wind speed and direction and temperature, humidity, pressure and rainfall every hour of every day, 365 days a year and the information is directly available from the Bureau's website at www.bom.gov.au

Senator Scullion said the investment in weather infrastructure demonstrated the Federal Government's commitment to delivering quality meteorological services to all Australians including regional Australia.

"The upgrades at Darwin and Tennant Creek will provide the NT with some of the most modern weather surveillance facilities in the country and will improve weather monitoring and forecasting capabilities across the Northern Territory particularly during the wet season," Senator Scullion said.

"The inclusion of ceilometers and visibility meters on airport AWS across the Territory will give local aviators greater certainty in interpreting upper air conditions at these busy airports."

Media enquiries:
Fiona Murphy (Mr Hunt's office) 0423 577 045
Joseph Nyhan (Senator Scullion's office) 0408 288 567 / 08 8981 3567

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