Looming threat of drought like conditions for Fiji

April 3, 2024 12:51 pm

The Fiji Meteorological Services is issuing a warning about the looming threat of drought-like conditions in the upcoming months.

Senior Scientific Officer Arieta Baleisolomone has attributed it to the moderate El Niño event that they have been closely monitoring since the end of last year.

Despite nearing the conclusion of this El Niño event, Baleisolomone says that Fiji should brace for continued impacts over the next few months.

Article continues after advertisement

She states that the transition from the wet season to drier weather patterns will become increasingly evident starting this month.

“We are likely to experience reduced rainfall, especially for the Western Division and also parts of the Northern Division but not clearly be seen by the Central Division. Starting in April, you’ll start to see a bit of suppressed rainfall as we move further onto the May and June period.”

El Niño events historically lead to a reduction in rainfall for Fiji, affecting the entire country to varying degrees.

Baleisolomone highlights the rarity of isolated dry spells, stressing that it is quite unusual for one region to experience prolonged drought while another encounters wet conditions.

The wet season in Fiji is normally from November to April.

While also marking World Meteorological Day in Nadi, Minister responsible Ro Filipe Tuisawau re-emphasizes the important role the weather office plays in terms of forecasting, giving forewarning to the people about cyclones or extreme weather conditions.

Minister for Meteorological Services Ro Filipe Tuisawau

Ro Filipe says they must be delivering their functions efficiently and effectively, especially in terms of accuracy and timeliness.

“That’s why it’s very important that we are linking up with international organizations such as the World Metrological Organization to ensure that the compliance standards, the scientific data and the linkages between us as a nation and the international scientific communities, as far as the world or Met Services are up to standard and scientifically credible.

Close to 200 students from four schools in Nadi were also part of the celebrations today where they were given a tour of the office.