Ghana gets new seismic centre

A National Data Centre to monitor, manage and co-ordinate seismic activities in the country has been inaugurated in Accra.

The centre, equipped with modern gadgets to meet international standards, will collate data on seismic activities and report all aspects of disaster to the relevant government agencies.

Inaugurating the centre, the Minister of  Environment, Science and Technology, Ms Sherry Ayittey, said it would disseminate data to the International Data Centre and make data available to stakeholders for earthquake disaster mitigation.

She said the project was a collaborative effort between the Ghana Atomic Energy Commission (GAEC) and the Comprehensive Nuclear Test-Ban Treaty Organisation (CTBTO).

The centre would be uploaded to the International Data Centre (IDC) and as well receive data from other international organisations.

Ms Ayittey said Ghana did not have any operational, centralised data acquisition system with the capability of accessing data from other international stations,  making the establishment of the data centre a laudable one.

She said the idea of setting up a National Data Centre to monitor seismic activities was very timely, recalling the unexpected behaviour of many in the country two weeks ago in response to an announcement of an impending earthquake that turned out to be a hoax.

She said the strange reaction from the citizenry could have been controlled if the country had a system that co-ordinated seismic data to give information to the public about earthquakes.

Ms Ayittey said earthquake-related damage to human lives and property was an important social and economic issue which needed to be addressed at all cost by all nations.

The Deputy Director-General of GAEC, Professor Yaw Serfor Armah, said the centre would provide the commission with the capability of contributing immensely to the global effort of monitoring the testing of nuclear weapons around the world.

He said the commission was ever prepared to serve the nation in any capacity so long as the peaceful application of nuclear science and technology was available.

Speaking to the Daily Graphic, the advisor and consultant on capacity building for the CTBTO, Dr Mario Villagram, said
the organisation would go beyond just monitoring and co-ordinating seismic activities to receiving and interpreting data for special events within the country.

Source: Daily Graphic

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