The Egyptian Parliament‘s Tourism and Civil Aviation Committee has approved a proposed law to reorganize the Egyptian Meteorological Authority (EMA).
The new law aims to enhance the quality of meteorological services, attract foreign investment, and promote scientific research in meteorology. It also imposes fines on those who propagate false weather information, aiming to mitigate losses resulting from the dissemination of inaccurate data that could adversely impact the economy.
The Need for a Governing Statute for EMA
EMA has been operating for over 50 years without a governing statute to regulate its operations. In response to the recommendations of the Arab Meteorological Committee of the Arab League, the Egyptian government has now prepared a draft law for the agency.
The draft law aims to regulate all the procedures of the authority, including the creation of a legislative environment to provide meteorological services that will improve their quality.
Penalties for Providing Meteorological Services without a License
The draft law also includes penalties for individuals who provide meteorological services without a license from the authority. The aim is to address false news about meteorology that may harm the national economy.
The legislation specifies a minimum fine of LE 50,000 (US$1,617.88) and a maximum fine of LE 5 million ($161.8,000) for those who publish incorrect weather information on social media or release meteorological data, bulletins, or studies and attribute them to the authority.
Regulating Meteorological Services
The new draft law aims to regulate all the procedures of the authority, including the creation of a legislative environment to provide meteorological services that will improve their quality.
The legislation will regulate issues such as licenses, approvals, fees, technical specifications for practicing activities in the field of meteorological services, and establishing or operating meteorological or marine meteorological stations.
Committee Approval and Objectives of the New Law
Emad al-Dargali, a member of the Parliament’s Tourism and Civil Aviation Committee, noted that the committee approved the draft law with the aim of improving the quality of meteorological services, attracting foreign investments, and encouraging scientific research in meteorology.
The legislation will also establish a system for licensing meteorologists and regulating their practice to ensure the provision of reliable and accurate weather information to the public.
Penalizing False Weather Information
Many non-specialists have been observed publishing meteorological news under various names, including meteorological activists. These parties often spread inaccurate news about the weather, causing confusion and spreading rumors among citizens.
The former head of EMA, Ahmed Abdel-Aal, explained that this situation must be addressed. The new law aims to deter individuals and organizations from publishing incorrect meteorological or weather information on social media or issuing meteorological data, bulletins, or studies and attributing them to the authority.
The proposed law to reorganize the Egyptian Meteorological Authority aims to enhance the quality of meteorological services and attract foreign investment while regulating the provision of meteorological services and penalizing the dissemination of false weather information.
The imposition of fines on those who propagate inaccurate data will mitigate losses resulting from such dissemination, which could adversely affect the economy. The new law will regulate all procedures of the authority, including licensing, approvals, and fees, and establish a system for licensing meteorologists.