Thursday 13 December 2018
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reliefweb - 7 days ago

Papua New Guinea: Provinces hit by unusual dry spell: Weather office

Source: The National Country: Papua New Guinea
By MICHAEL LAI FIVE provinces which should by now be experiencing rain are continuing to have dry weather, according to the National Weather Service. Director Samuel Maiha said Western, Gulf, the National Capital District, Milne Bay and Bougainville normally experience the wet season from December to April. Parts of Central, Hela, Southern Highlands and West New Britain also experience dry conditions but to a lesser extent. Maiha said the dry season could impact food production and security, water and fisheries in those places. He said rainfall this year was less in Western and other Papuan provinces. “They are receiving 10 per cent of rainfall while others have 20 to 70 per cent of expected rainfall. That is a sign of El Nino,” he said. Maiha said El Nino was the period when the warm sea surface temperature moved away from PNG. “The results of the ocean temperature measuring instrument show the clear cooling of the seas surrounding PNG,” he said. “This means there is less availability of moisture and subsequent rainfall,” he said. “When the ocean is warm, many abundant moisture is available. “When the sun heats them up, the moisture rises to the form clouds and falls as rain.” Maiha said Papua New Guinea experienced the conditions in 1972 and 1997. The warm ocean moves towards the South American coast. Kiunga, normally the wettest place with the highest rainfall, is experiencing dry weather. Port Moresby remains the driest district.

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