16:00 - ACF Wrap-Up Panel Session

Date: Wednesday April 20th
16:00 - ACF Wrap-Up Panel Session
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ACF Wrap-Up Panel Session
16:00 - 17:00
CHAIR: Jim Anderson, Chairman, Association of Hydro-Meteorological Equipment Industry 

How extreme weather & climate change are impacting the routine applications of weather and related data, and how the public, private and academic sectors are responding to the challenges.


- Ben Churchill, Director, WMO Regional Office for Asia and the South-West Pacific, 
- Dr Thomas Reindl, Deputy CEO, Solar Energy Research Institute of Singapore (SERIS) 
- Prof. Alan Jenkins, UK Centre for Ecology & Hydrology
- Panu Partanen, Vice President, Vaisala

Jim Anderson

Jim Anderson

Senior Vice President of Global Sales at Earth Networks

Mr. Anderson is focused on the international and domestic expansion of the company and meeting the weather and environmental monitoring needs for a number of vertical market stakeholders, including government agencies, aviation, energy and mining. Mr. Anderson joined the company in 2002 and launched the business efforts in the energy, public safety, federal government and commercial verticals.

Previously, Mr. Anderson was a principal consultant at American Management Systems, where he helped launch the energy and utilities practice. Prior to that, he conducted economic and public policy research in the agriculture and environmental sectors.

Mr. Anderson holds an MBA from Georgetown University, a Master of Science in Environmental Economics and Policy from the University of Maine, and a Bachelor of Science in Wildlife Biology and Environmental Economics from the University of Wisconsin–Madison.

Prof. Alan Jenkins

Prof. Alan Jenkins

Chief Scientist, UK Centre for Ecology & Hydrology

Alan is CEH Science Director with a research background in hydrology. He represents the UK internationally on two key forums: as Hydrological Advisor to the UK Met Office with the World Meteorological Organization and as Chair of the UK National Focal Centre for the UNESCO International Hydrology Programme.

With WMO he currently leads the Task Team to develop the ‘Global Hydrological Status and Outlook System’ and is a Member of the Executive Council Expert Panel on Water. With UNESCO IHP he represents Region 1 (Europe and N. America) as Vice-Chair on the governing Bureau. He recently initiated the COSMOS soil moisture monitoring system and the ‘hydrological outlook’ system in the UK and has been working with international partners around the world to establish similar initiatives.

Dr Thomas Reindl

Dr Thomas Reindl

Deputy CEO, Solar Energy Research Institute Singapore (SERIS)

Dr Thomas Reindl is Deputy CEO of the Solar Energy Research Institute of Singapore (SERIS) and Principal Research Fellow (equivalent to Associate Professor) at the National University of Singapore (NUS). See: https://www.seris.nus.edu.sg/

He started with photovoltaics (PV) in 1992 at the SIEMENS Corporate R&D Labs. After holding several management positions at SIEMENS and running one of the leading German PV system integration companies (ILIOTEC Solar) as Chief Operating Officer and their spin-off company (PROACTIVE new energy) as Managing Director, he joined SERIS in 2010 and soon became Director of the Solar Energy System cluster. During his time at SERIS, he won public research grants in excess of SGD 20 million, founded 2 spin-off companies and authored strategic scientific papers such as the "PV Roadmap for Singapore".

Dr. Reindl holds a Master in Chemistry, a Ph.D. in Natural Sciences and an MBA from INSEAD, all awarded with highest honours. His research interest are high-performance PV systems, techno-economic road-mapping and the reliable integration of renewable energies into energy supply systems.

Panu Partanen

Panu Partanen

Vice President, Asia-Pacific, Middle East, Africa and Latin America, Weather and Environment Business Area, Vaisala

Panu Partanen holds the position of Vice President, Asia-Pacific, Middle East, Africa and Latin America at Vaisala's Weather and Environment Business Area. Vaisala is the world leading supplier for meteorological measurement infrastructure. Main customers groups are the national meteorological agencies, aviation authorities, defense forces, road authorities, energy sector and research institutes. At Vaisala Panu Partanen has been intensely involved in large meteorological infrastructure development projects.

In this position he has traveled for business in over 60 countries, getting excellent knowledge on the needs of meteorological agencies. It has also given a deep understanding on the demanding business environment in emerging markets, and excellent insight on the business-to-government challenges. He has worked for four years in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia (2003-2007), as the Manager for Vaisala’s Regional Office and Regional Manager for South East Asia.

Mr. Partanen holds a Master of Science degree from the Helsinki University of Technology. Post graduate studies include management, leadership and strategy courses, as well as technical studies at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich, and Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Ben Churchill

Ben Churchill

Head, Regional Office for Asia and the South-West Pacific World Meteorological Organization

Ben Churchill is the Head of the WMO Regional Office for Asia and the South-West Pacific (RAP Office) in Singapore, and has oversight of WMO’s Representative Offices in Manama, Bahrain and Apia, Samoa. He was appointed to this role in August 2020.

He provides strategic direction and leadership to facilitate mobilization of resources and technical support to 59 WMO Members (35 in Asia and 24 in the South-West Pacific) to help improve delivery of climate, weather, water and environmental services to communities and stakeholders across the Asia Pacific Region.

Through active engagement, collaboration and innovation with national meteorological and hydrological services (NMHSs), WMO’s technical experts, partners and stakeholders, Ben is focused on reducing the impact of extreme climate and weather on lives and property, particularly for the most vulnerable.

He is determined to increase the visibility and relevance of WMO and its Members by promoting their impact and value and the significant contribution to sustainable development. This includes promoting the critical role of multi-hazard early warning systems in protecting lives and property thereby reducing economic, social and environmental risks and impacts associated with natural hazards.

Ben Churchill is building stronger partnerships with ESCAP, ESCWA, UNDRR, RIMES and others, including in the private sector and academia, to help communities become more aware of the risks associated with a changing and more variable climate and build resilience. With a strong focus on Least Developed Countries and Small Island Developing States this work is also further reducing the gap between developed and developing countries.

Ben Churchill and his team in the RAP Office and Representative Offices are actively contributing to WMO’s ongoing reform process by aligning regional structures and working mechanisms with the WMO’s Technical Commissions (Infrastructure and Services) and the Research Board. The objective is more efficient and effective governance and implementation of initiatives and activities across the region.

Before joining the WMO Secretariat, Ben Churchill was a strategic leader in the Australian Bureau of Meteorology’s international affairs team for more than eight years. In this role, he was responsible for coordinating intergovernmental responsibilities and fostering bilateral relationships on weather, climate, water and oceans including with key actors in the Asia Pacific Region. 

Ben Churchill’s career over 30 years has included senior government roles in Australia with responsibility for a wide range of environmental law, policy and programmes spanning biodiversity conservation, natural resources and sustainable development. Among his achievements, he led the development of a strategic directions statement and management plans to guide sustainable use of ten of Australia’s internationally significant wetlands, including protection of migratory bird species.

Ben Churchill has operational experience in disaster response and recovery, working as an accredited practitioner in planning and resource coordination roles during major catastrophic events such as bushfires, floods and biosecurity hazards.

Ben Churchill holds a Bachelor of Science in environmental design and natural resource management from the University of Canberra and has completed professional studies in strategic leadership, environmental law, incident management systems, and environmental auditing.