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Home Organizations Department of Meteorology

Department of Meteorology


Department of Meteorology is one of the oldest government departments in Sri Lanka. Though the Department of Meteorology was established on 1st October 1948, meteorological observations in Sri Lanka have a long history dating back to around 1850. A lot of credit for initiating systematic meteorological observations in Sri Lanka should go to Colonel Fryers who served as the Surveyor General of Sri Lanka from 1866-1883, who took a keen interest in establishing meteorological stations on an island-wide basis. At the time of his retirement, Sri Lanka had 14 principal meteorological stations recording rainfall, temperature, wind, and cloud in addition to a network of over 50 rain gauge stations.

In 1907 with the founding of the Colombo Observatory in Bauddhaloka Mawatha, meteorological work in Sri Lanka assumed a more scientific orientation. The first Superintendant of the Colombo Observatory was Mr. H.O. Barnard, Assistant Surveyor General.

Massive development schemes launched by the Government after the war in the 1940s began to have its impact on the resources of the Observatory. The pressure resulted in the increase in scientific staff as well as considerable enlargement and re-organization. In order to provide meteorological services to the users more effectively, Department of Meteorology was established on 1st October 1948 as a government department. The first Director of the Department was Dr. D.T.E. Dassanayake who served in this capacity until 14 July 1958.

The major functions are:
alt Provision of meteorological, climatological and limited astronomical services
alt Provision of early warning services with regard to meteorological hazards and tsunami
alt Contribute to technical activities on climate change

Address: 383, Bauddhaloka Mawatha, Colombo 07

Website:  www.meteo.gov.lk

Last Updated on Wednesday, 31 July 2013 04:30  

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