Global climate models have confirmed that an El Nino event is under way in the east equatorial Pacific with implications for Indian monsoon in September.

El Nino is a warming of sea-surface temperatures in the equatorial Pacific that occurs every four to 12 years.

LATEST DATA

It is the opposite of the La Nina pattern, which often triggers floods in South Asia. Back-to-back La Nina episodes occurred during 2010-12.

The official Japanese weather agency and the Climate Prediction Centre of the US National Weather Services pointed to the emerging event on Friday.

Latest data suggested the El Nino phenomenon had emerged, the Japan Meteorological Agency said.

“The chances are high that the El Nino phenomenon will be maintained until the winter,” the agency said in a statement.

It did not say how intense and how long the developing El Nino will be.

Nearly all models favour the onset of El Nino beginning in July- September, the US agency said.

MODERATE EVENT

“Supported by model forecasts and the continued warmth across the Pacific Ocean, there is increased confidence for a weak-to-moderate El Nino,” it added.

The El Nino alert came on a day when central India and adjoining regions continued to receive showers from a lately resurgent monsoon.

India Meteorological Department (IMD) said in an update that the monsoon was active over parts of northwest India Himachal Pradesh, east-central India, north peninsular India and the west coast during past 24 hours ending Friday morning.

The causative low-pressure area had weakened, but a successor system had moved into place over northwest Bay of Bengal.

RAIN ALERT

IMD has warned of heavy to very heavy rainfall over coastal Karnataka, Konkan and Goa during the next two days.

Heavy rainfall has been forecast for Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Orissa, West Bengal and Sikkim.

The overall deficit continues to be 17 per cent, with individual deficit for disparate regions showing varying trends.

The deficit is building over east and northeast India (12 per cent) while that for others has showed a marked downtrend.

The latest individual deficit position is: northwest India-31 per cent; central India-11 per cent; and peninsular India-18 per cent.

vinson.kurian@thehindu.co.in

(This article was published on August 10, 2012)
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