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Sweden demands better weather forecasts

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Sweden demands better weather forecasts
08:03 CET+01:00
As the government unleashed a swell of frustration over inaccurate weather forecasts, Environment Minister Andreas Carlgren demanded improved accuracy from meteorologists at the state-owned Swedish Meterological and Hydrological Institute (SMHI).

The state has now ruled that at least 85 percent of forecasts in one year must be accurate.

But according to Carlgren, meteorologists can't do it, reported the Dagens Nyheter (DN) newspaper.

Correct predictions are important when planning holidays and going out on the lake, he said, and on Friday the Minister went to Norrköping to discuss the problems with the weather institute.

"I, like all others who use their weather forecasts, want this to work well," Carlgren told the TT news agency.

Last year every sixth full-day prognosis was wrong, well below the agreed rate for good quality.

Carlgren said that it was not just about planning swimming outings and ski vacations but that correct predictions are also important for crisis management and infrastructure.

SMHI has forecasted weather better before, it seems.

Last year, meteorologists at the government weather agency missed 33 percent of gale warnings compared with 22 percent in 2008.

SMHI General Director Lena Pour pledged to invest in more accurate information.

“Given that we did not reach our goals I have issued a mandate to those who make the forecasts that they actually have to improve the quality," she said to TT.

To meet the Environment Minister's expectations, SMHI has enlisted the help of experts from abroad, consulting both with Norway and the United Kingdom.

SMHI is a government agency under the Ministry of the Environment and offers services such as general forecasts and weather warnings, simulations and analyses, statistics, climate studies and contracted research among others.

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