Sunday, May 28, 2023

STH Stormwatch :A tale of two cylones - in May2023.

STH has been tracking and reporting on storms for more than a decade even though now we report largely on a What'sApp group called 'Hazard Alerts'.
In May2023, the very quiet seas in the Bay of Bengal and eastern Pacific suddenly became active and brewed several big storms.
Cyclone 'Mocha' which formed in the Bay of Bengal around 08May2023 and we tracked and reported on the storm extensively:-

As I write Typhoon 'MAWAR' has formed in the eastern Pacific but is likely to weaken from a Super Typhoon to a severe tropical storm as is nears land.

Praful Rao
Kalimpong district
Darjeeling - Sikkim Himalaya

Friday, May 5, 2023

AI generated images of landslide disasters

I have always been fond of both computers and photography, so I am amazed by the awesome capablities of ChatGPT. I also shudder at what AI can do in art, photography and maybe even music.
To learn a little more about AI in photography, I have been tinkering around with since yesterday. This is a free AI software on the internet.
Placed below are several images I created since then and am shocked how realistic they become as one gains more experience in using the software. I used keywords related to the Himalayas and landslides to generate the first 3 images and then on earthquakes and dams to create the latter two.
Keywords related to Landslides and Himalayas

Keywords related to Earthquakes and dams in the Himalayas

All the above images are as created by AI without my editing them in Photoshop (PS). The quality of the images can certainly be improved:
a. With more practice
b. By editing them in PS
b. Using - but this is not a freeware.

The image below shows how uncannily close to reality the AI image:

Praful Rao
Kalimpong district
Darjeeling-Sikkim Himalaya

Thursday, May 4, 2023

Early Warning: Forecast (GFS Model) positions of storm in the Bay of Bengal from

The first cyclone of 2023 (Cyclone MOCHA) is expected to form in the Bay of Bengal in a few days.
Forecast positions of the storm (using the GFS model) have been published by
Placed below are the forecast positions from the website.

Please check
a. Regional Specialized Meteorological Centre for Tropical Cyclones (
c. US Navy's Joint Typhoon Warning Centre website (
for more accurate forecast track later when the storm forms in the Bay of Bengal

Praful Rao
Kalimpong district
Darjeeling Sikkim Himalaya

Monday, May 1, 2023

STH at the C20 (Civil-20) Conclave in Gangtok (Sikkim) on 30April2023

In Dec 2022, India assumed the Presidency of G20 which is a group of 20 nations which have come together to address some of the major issues of the world. In this C20 or Civil 20 is one of the many engagement groups which will forward its policy recommendations later in the year to the G20 group for consideration.
What is the C20?
Well, C20 provides a platform to Civil Society Organizations of countries in the G20 group to voice their perspectives on the many issues in which civil society has a role. In this regard, the Chair of C20 is Amma ((Sri Mata Amritanandamayi Devi) and a Conclave on 'Sustainable and Resilient Communities' was organized by the Amrita Organization along with the Govt of Sikkim on the 29/30April at Chintan Bhavan in Gangtok, SIkkim.

Responding to a Call for Submissions by the C20 group, STH submitted a 3 slide presentation to the organizers for the Conclave on 'HAZARD ALERTS', a What's App group which STH formed 6 years ago in order to disseminate hazard warnings and information to the Grass Roots in the Darjeeling-Sikkim Himalaya
We also submitted a short video on 'HAZARD ALERTS'

I am glad to inform you that our submission was selected as one of the 20 BEST PRACTICES(Udaharans) to be submitted to the G20 later this year for consideration and I had the privilege of speaking at briefly about 'Hazard Alerts' yesterday at the Chintan Bhavan.

Praful Rao
Kalimpong district
Darjeeling- Sikkim Himalaya