Saudi winter will ‘not bite’ as anticipated

In this January 2016 photo, Saudi motorists flock to a high road in Tabuk region to enjoy the snowy weather. A meteorologist has reassured the public that this year’s winter will not be as “biting” as some weathermen and climate geeks have anticipated. (SPA file photo)
Updated 07 December 2017
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Saudi winter will ‘not bite’ as anticipated

JEDDAH: A meteorologist has reassured the public that this year’s winter will not be as “biting” as some weathermen and climate geeks have anticipated.
Over the past few weeks, people have been skeptical of the coming winter weather conditions. Social media surfers have been describing the upcoming winter season as “severe” and to be the “coldest” to hit Saudi Arabia since 2007, but their forecast seems to contradict the opinion of experienced weather forecasters.
“Formation of clouds and wind movements give a clear indication that this year’s winter is normal,” Khalid Al-Za’aq, an astronomy researcher and member of the Arab Union for Astronomy and Space Science (AUASS), told Arab News.
He pointed out that locals call the 40 coldest days of winter, “Al-Marbaniyeh,” which begins in December and ends in January. He noted that temperatures, during that period, drops.
Al-Za’aq anticipated that the northern and northwestern regions of the Kingdom, as well as Al-Jouf and Hail would experience sub-zero temperatures.
“It is not new for these parts of the Kingdom. This, in fact, happens nearly every year,” Al-Za’aq said. He added that temperatures in the Qassim region and the northern parts of Riyadh would probably experience even lower temperatures.
He recalled the Kingdom’s weather conditions in 2008, and described them at that time as “harsh enough.” However, the expert said, the current meteorological indications show that this year’s weather conditions would be usual and pleasurable.
According to the expert, the Kingdom is likely to receive heavy rains from the middle of Al-Marbaniyeh.
“This November, the amount of humidity in the central region ascended to 80 percent, similar to that in 1981 and 1982. This indicates that heavy rains are likely to lash the Kingdom…”
Al-Za’aq hailed the General Authority of Meteorology and Environment Protection’s (GAMEP) weather forecasts for their accuracy.
In its short-term weather report, GAMEP announced Wednesday that a cold air mass would start affecting Tabuk, Al-Jouf, the Northern Border and Hail beginning Thursday. This will be accompanied by strong winds creating dusty weather conditions, and will affect horizontal visibility.
The GAMEP expects the sky over the north, east and southeastern regions to remain cloudy. GAMEP’s website also stated that people in the Makkah region, along with those residing in highlands of Jazan, Asir, and Baha could witness thunderstorms. The site added that the cold air mass is also expected to affect the central and eastern parts of the Kingdom.
 


Riyadh to host forum to observe World Heritage Day next year

Riyadh hosts the sixth National Urban Heritage Forum in April with its focus on investment opportunities in the urban heritage. (Reuters)
Updated 19 October 2018
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Riyadh to host forum to observe World Heritage Day next year

  • Forum will encourage private investment to capitalize on the country’s rich urban heritage
  • Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage hosts the forum each year in a different part of the Kingdom

RIYADH: The Saudi capital will host the sixth National Urban Heritage Forum (NUHF) next April to coincide with World Heritage Day, with its focus on investment opportunities in urban heritage.

“The four-day National Built Heritage Forum will be launched in Riyadh on April 15,” said Majed Alshadeed, a spokesman for the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTH), on Thursday, adding that the forum will culminate on April 18, World Heritage Day. World Heritage Day is celebrated every year on April 18 with the aim of preserving the human heritage and recognizing the efforts of the relevant organizations in the field.

Organized by SCTH under the umbrella of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques Cultural Heritage Program, the 6th forum will encourage private investment to capitalize on the country’s rich urban heritage.

The forum will look at developing business models in the management and development of — and investment in — urban heritage sites, as well as the development of crafts and handicrafts.

The heritage forum is organized each year by the SCTH in a different province in collaboration with the relevant governorates, municipalities and local universities, following the recommendations of the first International Conference for Urban Heritage in the Islamic Countries, which was held in Riyadh in 2010.

The first session of the NUHF was organized in Makkah province, the second in the Eastern Province, the third in Madinah province, the fourth in Asir province and the fifth in Al-Qassim province.

Next year’s forum seeks to invest the expertise, knowledge and experience that the SCTH has gained and transfer it to the four economic sectors working in urban heritage. These sectors are construction, restoration and contracting, site operation, human resources development, and services and industries related to urban heritage.

The forum will include the distribution of prizes to the projects winning the Prince Sultan bin Salman Urban Heritage Awards, exhibitions, scientific sessions, workshops and business meetings with Saudi and international experts and consultants to discuss investment opportunities in urban heritage. There will also be a specialized expo for companies and institutions working in the sectors of the economics of architectural heritage, restoration and engineering consultancy.