La Niña: MeT forecasts above-normal rainfall during this year’s monsoon; Telangana to benefit

The significance of the transition from El Niño to La Niña in the past resulted in positive monsoon outcomes

By Anoushka Caroline Williams  Published on  14 Feb 2024 10:30 AM GMT
La Niña: MeT forecasts above-normal rainfall during this year’s monsoon; Telangana to benefit

Hyderabad: Meteorological experts are foreseeing a high probability of above-normal rainfall not only in Telangana but throughout the country during this year’s monsoon season.

The potential development of La Niña, associated with robust monsoons, above-average rains, and colder temperatures, is expected to replace the weakening El Niño by July, bringing much-needed relief in the form of abundant rainfall.

Madhavan Rajeevan, former secretary at the Union Ministry of Earth Sciences, has pointed to favorable conditions emerging due to the diminishing El Niño phenomenon and the potential emergence of La Niña by July. He emphasized that there is a greater than 50 percent likelihood of a La Niña event, historically correlating with abundant monsoon rains in India. Rajeevan highlighted the significance of the transition from El Niño to La Niña, citing past instances where such shifts resulted in positive monsoon outcomes.

Referring to historical data, Rajeevan highlighted years like 1972-73, 1982-83, 1987-88, 1997-98, 2002-2003, 2009-2010, and 2015-2016, where La Niña episodes following El Niño events led to robust monsoon seasons in India. The El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) phenomenon, characterized by abnormal warming of sea surface temperatures in the central and eastern Pacific Ocean, significantly influences global weather patterns, including the Indian monsoon. El Niño typically suppresses monsoon rainfall in India, while La Niña tends to enhance it.

The forecast aligns with predictions from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) in the United States, which anticipates a 60 percent probability of La Niña conditions developing between August-September and October. Rajeevan, taking to the social media platform X (formerly Twitter), expressed that such a forecast should spread positivity across the country, stating, "By July, La Niña could develop, and more than 50 percent probability. High probability for 2024 monsoons should spread a good feeling across the country."

In the realm of ENSO phenomena, El Niño and La Niña are almost opposite in their impacts on weather events. El Niño is associated with hot summers and weak monsoons, while La Niña refers to the phase where sea-surface temperatures are cooler than normal, leading to stronger monsoons, above-average rains, and colder winters.

As the anticipation builds for the monsoon season, the promising outlook for 2024 provides hope for substantial rainfall across India, fostering positive expectations for agricultural and water resources in the coming months.

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