Caribbean News

Despite rains, concerns over drought situation prevail

The Barbados-based Caribbean Drought and Precipitation Monitoring Network (CDPMN) Tuesday said even as rainfall continues to increase across the region, there’s more concern over long term drought that can continue to cause below normal levels of groundwater, large rivers and reservoirs.

In its September bulletin, the CDPMN said that even as the rainfall increased, there were pockets of concern, including in parts of Belize and Jamaica, where there was at least temporary relief for the most part, as the El Niño dissipated.

“Though there not many concerns over short term drought that can impact agriculture, streams and ponds by the end of November, there is much more concern over long term drought that can continue to cause below normal levels of groundwater, large rivers and reservoirs. Long term drought is most likely to evolve in portions of the Guianas, the eastern Caribbean and Belize by the end of November,” the CDPMN warned.

It said that mixed rainfall conditions were experienced in the islands of the eastern Caribbean for July. Trinidad was exceptionally dry in the west to slightly wet in the east; Tobago normal to moderately wet; Grenada, St. Vincent, Dominica and St. Kitts normal; Barbados and Antigua normal to slightly wet; St. Lucia and Martinique normal to moderately dry.

It said that conditions in the Guianas ranged from exceptionally wet in southwest Guyana and northern French Guiana to exceptionally dry around the northern Suriname/French Guiana border. Curacao was moderately dry.

Jamaica ranged from severely dry in the south to slightly wet in the northwest. Cuba ranged from normal in the south and southwest to moderately wet in the west and north and to very wet in the east, while northern Bahamas ranged from exceptionally wet to moderately dry from south to north. CDPMN said conditions in Belize ranged from normal in the south to extremely dry in central and eastern areas and to the north.

It said in the shorter term drought situation  -by end of November – drought might possibly develop in much of Belize, Dominica, Martinique, Trinidad and Suriname, while long term drought situation for the same period is evolving in much of Belize, Dominica, French Guiana, Martinique, St. Kitts, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and Suriname..

The CDPMN said that long term drought might possibly develop in Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao as well as  Antigua, Barbados, Dominican Republic, Grenada, Guyana and Trinidad.

(CMC)

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