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El Nino effect to continue into next month

Sunday, March 07, 2010

THE effects of the ongoing El Nino experienced in the country is expected to last this month and into April.

The impact is expected to continue for the next three to six months, Director of Meteorology Rajendra Prasad said.

He said the effect of this weather pattern was very dominant throughout last year and was continuing to be experienced this year.

Mr Prasad has warned the impact would extend to parts of the drier season beginning in May.

"The El Nino is expected to last to March and onto April but the impact will continue for some time and even longer into the dry season, which is not good," he said.

Mr Prasad said the consequences would be problems with storage by water-reliant industries, particularly in Monasavu and other reservoirs.

He said during the current wet season, from November to April, there had been a "drier than usual kind of rainfall pattern".

"The Central Division is a bit lucky, at least since February that it has been receiving above average rainfall compared to the dry pattern experienced in the West and northern parts of the country," Mr Prasad.

"This indicates that the El Nino is still having dominant effect and that is not likely to change quickly," he said.

Last month, the weather office warned people to monitor the weather and be cautious with agricultural crops they planted.

Fiji's Meteorological Service had declared last year certain parts of Fiji would be under "meteorological drought", which meant they would consistently receive below average rainfall, with agricultural drought a likely result.


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