FSM, General, News

Severe Drought Continues throughout Micronesia

Periods of rain during past weeks were not sufficient enough to overcome the extreme drought that is expanding and worsening across Micronesia according to the National Weather Service.

According to some assessments done by the U.S Drought Monitor many locations across Micronesia are now in an extreme drought, which means the drought levels of 3 and 4.

According to the NWS, below average rainfall has already affected day today activities of Mariana Islands, the Republic of Palau, Yap and Chuuk States in Federated States of Micronesia and the Republic of Marshall Islands.

Predictions made by NWS said that light rainfall could be expected month or two from now through late spring 2016, but the conditions would be more drier than the usual a 2016 progresses.

weather-micronesia-01Some areas like FSM and RMI has declared state of emergencies because of the severe drought conditions and its impact on general public.

In Palau Koror and Babeldaob and the states of Yap and Pohnpei in FSM are severely affected by the drought, drought level are indicated to be of levels 3 and 4 as earlier mentioned.

It  should be noted that rainfall has been below the the average and is expected to continue like this for several months.

As NWS has stated, rainfall has been near normal since March 1st but the computer models indicate below normal rainfall over the next weeks.

During the first half of March, NWS records that Rota received 1.25 of 3.05 inches of average monthly rain, Tinian 1.30 0f 2.40 inches, and Saipan, 1.16 of 1.93 inches.

Water conservation should be definitely encouraged while monitoring water supply. Vegetations are affected and this will become much worse and grass fires will increase. It should be mentioned that water wells on Saipan could see an increase in salinity as the drought progresses.

According to the NWS the computer model has indicated  that only a quarter inch to a half inch of rain will fall through the next 10 days on Rota, Tinian, and Saipan.

The far Northern Islands will have much better rain falls as areas near Pagan which could receive one inch of rainfall during the next 10 days.

Furthermore, NWS says that El Nino event has peaked and is slowly affecting the Pacific region. Climate models has indicated that the pattern will continue through late spring, then weaken to ENSO-neutral by the summer months and a possible transition to La Nina status late in the year.

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