Commission on Science and Technology for Sustainable Development in the South (COMSATS)

International Symposium on Impacts of Extreme Atmospheric Events successfully organized in Colombo

Home   /   International Symposium on Impacts of Extreme Atmospheric Events successfully organized in Colombo

The two-day International Symposium on ‘Impacts of Extreme Atmospheric Events on Geo-Surface in a Changing Climate’ was successfully held on 14-15 May 2015, in Colombo, Sri Lanka. The event was jointly organized by COMSATS and two of its Centres of Excellence, the Industrial Technology Institute (ITI), Sri Lanka, and the International Center for Climate and Environment Sciences (ICCES), China.

The key objective of the event was to provide a forum for the exchange of knowledge on natural disasters and mechanisms of extreme atmospheric events; sharing of skills and know-how for prediction of such events and preparedness for future environmental calamities; and encouraging the participants to initiate collaborative research projects related to the prediction of extreme atmospheric events.

The symposium was inaugurated on 14th May 2015, by the Secretary, Ministry of Higher Education & Research, Government of Sri Lanka, Mr. P. Ranepura. Speaking at the occasion, Mr. Ranepura stated that the developing countries are being hugely affected by the extreme atmospheric events, in the form of droughts, floods, cyclones, etc., and therefore considered the symposium in-line with the current needs and priorities of the countries of the South. He hoped that the event will be successful in facilitating collaboration among the participating scientists for studying the impacts of atmospheric extreme events as well as working out related mitigation strategies.

Earlier, Mr. Niroshana Perera, Chairman ITI, stated that studying the extreme atmospheric events and their impacts on different regions of the world is a collective responsibility, and his country is ready to play an active role in this regard. He thanked COMSATS for providing an opportunity to ITI to host this long-awaited international event in Sri Lanka.

Dr. Imtinan Elahi Qureshi, Executive Director COMSATS, in his address at the occasion, overviewed the legal and political developments at the international level, since the global realization of the significance of climate change leading to United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in Rio conference of 1992. Explaining the huge risks faced by mankind, particularly developing countries, due to extreme events associated to climate change and global warming as per the findings of Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the Executive Director informed that COMSATS is dedicated to promote international cooperation among the countries of the South for collectively addressing their common challenges. In this regard, he mentioned the capacity building activities executed by COMSATS in this field, as well as the research activities of COMSATS’ International Thematic Research Group on ‘Climate Change and Environmental Protection’, which was to hold its fourth meeting in conjunction with the symposium.

Prof. Zhaohui Lin, Director ICCES, China, stated that there is sufficient evidence to believe that changes are taking place in the climatic extremes in different regions of the world. He informed that most developing countries, including China, are aware of the need to promote research activities and collaborations in this field with a view to understand the mechanisms and impacts of extreme atmospheric events. He congratulated and thanked ITI for hosting this important event, and playing its part in the overall efforts to limit climate change.

During the inaugural session, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between ITI and ICCES, for the establishment of the Climate Change Research Centre was also signed by Dr. Muditha Liyanagedara, Acting Director General ITI, and Prof. Zhaohui Lin, Director ICCES, China. The signing of MoU was followed by a keynote address by Prof. Ajith de Alwis, Senior Professor, Department of Chemical and Process Engineering, University of Moratuwa, Sri Lanka.

The countries represented during the symposium included Malaysia, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Iran, Thailand, China, and Sri Lanka. The event featured thirteen invited lectures by the following foreign and local resource persons: Prof. Zhaohui Lin, Director ICCES, China; Dr. Gorakanage Arosha Chandima Gomes, Associate Professor (Electrical Engineering), Department of Electrical & Electronics Engineering, Universiti Putra Malaysia, Malaysia; Dr. Shahina Tariq, Chairperson, Department of Meteorology, COMSATS Institute of Information Technology (CIIT), Pakistan; Prof. Dr. G. M. Tarekul Islam, Institute of Water and Flood Management (IWFM) of Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET), Bangladesh; Dr. Ali Akbar Noroozi, Soil Conservation & Watershed Management Research Institute, Iran; Dr. Senaka Basnayake, Head, Department of Climate Change and Climate Risk Management, Asian Disaster Preparedness Centre, Thailand; Dr. He Zhang, Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, China; Prof. A.K.M. Saiful Islam, Institute of Water and Flood Management (IWFM), Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET), Bangladesh; Ms. Anoja Seneviratne, Director, Mitigation Research and Development Division, Disaster Management Centre, Sri Lanka; Dr. Hao Chen, Director General, Sichuan Institute of Atomic Energy, China; Dr. Thusitha Sugathapala, Senior Lecturer, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Moratuwa, Sri Lanka; and Ms. Anusha Warnasooriya, Deputy Director, Department of Meteorology, Sri Lanka.

The lectures pertained to the following topics: Temperature Extremes in China: Observation, Modeling and Prediction; Climate Indices: An Effective Tool for Drought Prediction in South Asia; Development of the CAS Earth System Model and Its Applications on Extreme Events; Characteristics of Hydro-Climatic Extremes in Bangladesh; Analysis of the Extreme Rainfall Indices Over Bangladesh; Risk Management of Rare Disaster Events; Detection Change of Dust Storm in the West of Iran During 2000 to 2010; Climate Change Adaptation for Disaster Risk Reductions in Sri Lanka; Emergency Food for Disasters Preserved by Irradiation; Local Solution to Global Climate Change Issue: Zero-Carbon Economic Model for Sri Lanka – Making a Reality; Mitigation of Disasters Due to Severe Climate Conditions: From Policy to Practice; and Effective Utilization of Weather and Climate Information and Adaptive Technological Measures for Enhancement of Agro-Ecosystem Resilience: A Case Study on Transdisciplinary Stakeholder Approach; and Climate and Change in Climate in Sri Lanka.

Attended by about 60 participants, the symposium facilitated the exchange of scientific and technological expertise and know-how among the participating researchers belonging to various developing countries, and enhanced their capacities to understand, predict and monitor extreme atmospheric events and to work-out necessary measures for their mitigation at national, regional and international levels.

Upcoming Events

Workshop on Water Resources: Expected Crises and Strategies of Predomination, at National Research Centre, Egypt
Mar 11 – Mar 12 all-day

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Theme: “Rational Use of Water Resources”

Background and Rationale of the Workshop

Many parts of the world today are confronted by an acute water crisis that has several facets, including water deprivation among the world’s poor, fast-rising global water demand and climate change. The water security and poverty nexus is a particularly serious issue for development. Economic activity and growth, which are necessary for job creation and raising incomes in developing countries, depend on adequate, affordable and reliable supplies of water.

One of the main goals of the UN to be achieved by 2030 is to “substantially increase water-use efficiency across all sectors and ensure sustainable withdrawals and supply of freshwater to address water scarcity and substantially reduce the number of people suffering from water scarcity” (SDG No. 6).


Keeping in mind the SDG number 17: “Partnerships for the Goals”; the National Research Centre (NRC), Cairo and the Commission on Science and Technology for Sustainable Development in the South (COMSATS), Islamabad are co-organizing a workshop entitled “Water Resources: Expected Crises and Strategies of Predomination”.

Aims and Objectives

The workshop is designed to be an intensive co-working for specialists in the academic, administration and industrial sectors in all subjects of interest related to Science, Technology and Innovation. It will give them an opportunity to discuss, exchange opinion and reach recommendations of how to maximize efforts for rational use of water resources.

Targeted Participants

This event targets a wide range of participants, including:

  • Young scientists working in Science, Technology and Innovation with specific emphasis on water resources.
  • Academician working in industrial and service sectors related to water resources, and
  • Mid-to senior-level government officials in related Ministries.


All technical and discussion sessions of the workshop will be conducted in English language.

Financial Support

Accommodation for three nights in a suitable hotel and local transportation for international speakers and local administrative expenses of the workshop will be covered by NRC, Egypt. The economy class airfare and perdiam of the selected international speakers will be covered by COMSATS.


1. Water crisis in different parts of the world
2. Successful stories in water desalination
3. Successful stories in rational use of water in industrial sectors
4. Successful stories for rational use of water in agriculture
5. Future outlook regarding cooperative programs and projects among COMSATS Member States
6. Water recycling and utilization

How to Apply

Applications for participation (duly filled-in prescribed form, abstract of presentation, detailed CV and passport copy) are required to be submitted to NRC and COMSATS no later than Monday, 31st December 2018, at the following addresses:

Prof. Hosam El-Sayed
Assistant Vice President for Research &
International Relations
National Research Centre
33, El-Behouth St., 12311-Dokki,
Cairo, Egypt
Tel: (+20 100) 544 36 51
Fax: (+202 333) 701010

Mr. Farhan Ansari
Sr. Assistant Director (Programmes)
COMSATS Headquarters
Shahrah-e-Jamhuriat, G-5/2
Islamabad – Pakistan
Tel: (+92-51) 9214515-7
Fax: (+92-51) 9216539

The 22nd Meeting of COMSATS Coordinating Council, 16-17 April 2019, Tianjin, China
Apr 16 – Apr 17 all-day

The Commission on Science and Technology for Sustainable Development in the South (COMSATS) is pleased to announce the convening of the 22nd meeting of its Coordinating Council scheduled to be held in Tianjin, China, on 16 – 17 April 2019. The meeting will be hosted by COMSATS’ Centre of Excellence, the Tianjin Institute of Industrial Biotechnology (TIB), Chinese Academy of Sciences, China. The meeting programme includes a visit to TIB’s laboratories on 18th April 2019.

The Coordinating Council meets every year, inter alia, to: review the activities of COMSATS’ Network; follow up on the decisions and recommendations made in the previous meeting; and outline the future course of action.

Invitations and Confirmation of Participation

The Executive Director COMSATS has extended invitations to all members of the Coordinating Council. The representatives of some international partner organizations have also been invited to participate in the meeting as Observers.

COMSATS Headquarters is closely coordinating with the host institution (TIB) to ensure timely arrangements.

Agenda and Working Paper

The provisional Agenda of the meeting has been prepared. The detailed Working Paper and associated documents of the meeting are under preparation and will be electronically distributed to the Council members and other invitees during first half of March 2019.

For further details, please contact:

COMSATS Secretariat, Pakistan TIB, China

Mr. Tajammul Hussain
Advisor (Programmes)
COMSATS Headquarters
Shahrah-e-Jamhuriat, G-5/2
Islamabad, Pakistan
Tel: (+92-51) 9204892
Fax: (+92-51) 9216539

Mr. Farhan Ansari
Sr. Assistant Director (Programmes)
COMSATS Headquarters
Shahrah-e-Jamhuriat, G-5/2
Islamabad, Pakistan
Tel: (+92-51) 9214515-7
Fax: (+92-51) 9216539

Prof. Dr. Jibin Sun
Deputy Director-General
Tianjin Institute of Industrial Biotechnology (TIB), Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS)
Tianjin, China
32 West 7th Avenue, Tianjin Airport Economic Area, Tianjin 300308, China
Tel: 0086-22-84861949
Fax: 0086-22-84861943

Ms. Qianqian Chai
Officer of Foreign Affairs and Academic Exchange
Division of Science and Technology Development
Tianjin Institute of Industrial Biotechnology (TIB), Chinese Academy of Sciences(CAS)
32 West 7th Avenue, Tianjin Airport Economic Area, Tianjin 300308, China
Tel: +86-2284861925