The India Meteorological Department (IMD) on Thursday said that monsoon rains in the second half of the four month long season will be deficient, reports said.
“Our second half forecast is pointing to a deficient monsoon this year as a rainfall of anything less than 90% for the season is considered as deficient,” reports said citing IMD’s lead forecaster D S Pai.
Meanwhile, L.S. Rathore, director general of the weather office said that monsoon rains during June to September are likely to be 85% of the long-period average (LPA), 15% below average.
Quantitatively, rainfall for the country as a whole during August and September is likely to be 91% of the LPA with a model error of 8%, the forecast stated.
India’s LPA (1951-2000) for the entire four month season is 89cm while that for the second half is 43.5cm.
The rainfall deficit in June-July, the first two months of the season, stood at 19%, data from the IMD showed.
Also, the El Nino phenomenon is expected to further affect the monsoon rains in September.
The El Nino phenomenon is the warming of Pacific Ocean temperatures which adversely affects rainfall patterns.
"El Nino conditions are building up in the equatorial Pacific with sea surface temperature anomalies of 0.5 to 0.7 degrees Celsius observed over much of east equatorial Pacific during the recent two weeks. The latest forecast from a majority of the statistical and dynamical models indicate 65% probability of weak to moderate El Nino conditions to emerge in the next two months," the forecast stated. "This will adversely impact the rainfall over the country in the second half, it added.
Pai, however, said the situation is expected be better than 2009 when the country faced one of the worst droughts in recent years with a rainfall deficiency of 22%. This is mainly because of the prediction that the August rainfall will be normal at 96% of the LPA.
In India, where agriculture and farming account for 15% of the $2tn economy, timely and sufficient rainfall is extremely crucial as 55% of the arable land depends on rains for water needs.