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At Least 50% Chance of El Niño From Mid-2018 Until October 2019

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70% chance of El Niño  drought at year end

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There is a 70 percent chance of Panama being affected by the El Niño Phenomenon during the months of December 2018  and January 2019 said climatological experts from the Electricity Transmission Company (Etesa), on Monday July 23.

They said that the first signs are seen in the temperature changes in the oceans, which could cause drought for the Central American region.



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El Niño will likely mean less rain in dry season

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There is an 80% probability of an El Niño phenomenon in Central America during the coming months, that will mean a dry season will have less rain than usual for the Caribbean according to the of the Climate Hydrological Forum of Central America, gathered in Panama.

The rainy season should end between December 1 and 15 for the Central Pacific; between December 16 and 30 for the Eastern Pacific.

El Niño is a climatic phenomenon that is generated in the equatorial Pacific region and impacts the American continent, which causes strong and dramatic changes in the climate of the intertropical region, for example, strong droughts or more extensive than normal.

The forum reviewed and analyzed the most recent oceanic and atmospheric conditions, historical rainfall records, forecasts of global models and their possible implications on rain patterns in the region.

“Since the end of September, sea surface temperature indicators show a consistent and significant warming characteristic of an El Niño “  the forum concluded.



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50% chance of El Niño until October

Posted 25/03/2019
There is a 50-50 % probability that the  El Niño weather phenomenon will extend until October, causing less rainfall during the rainy season, according to Alcelys Lau , manager of Climatology at Etesa which could further problems for the Canal authorities who have already issued reduced draft notices  for vessels transiting  the waterway lasting into May with lake water levels at their lowest since the canal opened in 1914.

The atmospheric phenomenon of El Niño causes droughts in the Pacific area and an excess of rain on the Caribbean side, warms the waters of the tropical Pacific Ocean and its presence affects agricultural crops, livestock, and fisheries. In addition, the chances of forest fires increase.

It is expected that in the next quarter, from April to June, there will be rains lower than normal, influenced by the El Niño phenomenon of weak to moderate category. Azuero is the region most affected by the climate variation, with farmers already hard hit by water shortages.

"Water is the most important asset in the country, so a decrease can affect the level of rivers and the draft of the Canal. In the case of producers, we work to train them and take considerations, "said Lau.

Although we are late to store water, we must have more friendly practices with the environment, explained the official.



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Excess rains forecast as El Niño weakens


RIVER levels have fallen across the country

Posted 01/08/2019

The El Niño phenomenon is weakening, and within the next two months cloudy days and frequent rainfall characteristic of the months of August, September and October is expected.

With the phenomenon, rainfall had decreased causing drought in some parts of the country, including the Panama Canal basin, where the level of the lakes has not returned to normal causing a loss of income for the Canal authority as draft levels for container vessels eere reduced

The report was presented at the LIX Climate Forum in San José, Costa Rica, on July 17 and 18, 

With the forecast, the Caribbean slope, which includes Bocas del Toro, Ngäbe-Buglé region, north of Veraguas, north of Coclé, Colón (except the Chagres river basin), Guna Yala region and Darién province, would be getting rains above normal.

In the Canal basin, rainfall is expected to be normal in the next three months, said Aracely Lau, research and climate applications manager at Etesa.

There is a forecast of 14 tropical cyclones for the Atlantic basin and the Caribbean Sea, but to date, there have only been three: a storm, a hurricane and a tropical depression.

The chances of a cyclone affecting Panama are low, Lau explained, but when they occur in the region they have an impact on the climate of nearby countries.



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