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Summer in “Ber” months? PAGASA explains

MANILA – The state weather bureau yesterday warned the public to brace for warmer temperatures and stronger tropical cyclones during the ”ber” months due to the prevailing El Niño phenomenon.

Based on the latest climate forecast of the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) “slightly warmer than average” temperature is expected in most parts of the country from September until February 2016, except for the mountainous areas of Luzon which will have “slightly cooler than average” temperature.

“We could still experience the cold season but we are expecting that (warmer temperatures), which is typical for an El Niño,” Anthony Lucero, officer-in-charge of PAGASA’s climate monitoring and prediction section, told The STAR.

For this month, the forecast ranges of temperature will be as follows: mountainous Luzon (16-22 degrees Celsius); lowland Luzon (22-33 degrees Celsius); lowland Visayas (24-33 degrees Celsius); lowland Mindanao (22-32); and mountainous Mindanao (18-29 degrees Celsius).

PAGASA expects the shifting of wind from the warm and moisture-laden southwesterly to the cold northeasterly by October.

For January, normally the peak of the northeast monsoon, slightly warmer weather is predicted in lowland Luzon, lowland Visayas and lowland Mindanao, Lucero said.

The weather bureau also expects a significant reduction in rainfall in most parts of the country beginning this month until February next year.

Lucero noted that 65 provinces may suffer moderate to severe drought during the period, of which 35 are in Luzon, 16 in the Visayas and 14 in Mindanao.

“We expect the full impact (of El Niño) to happen in the last quarter of the year until next year. Dry spell and drought will affect most provinces of the Philippines,” he said.

STRONGER CYCLONES

Lucero warned that there is also a big possibility of stronger cyclones during the last quarter of the year due to the El Niño.

He said five to eight tropical cyclones may develop or enter the Philippine area of responsibility until February 2016.

Scientists of the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Climate Prediction Center predicted that the El Niño weather phenomenon could be “among the strongest El Niños in the historical record dating back to 1950.”

El Niño can cause unusually heavy rains in some parts of the world and drought elsewhere. It began in March and is seen to last until May next year.

Source: Abs-Cbn News, PH

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