Thursday, October 01, 2020

Rains to arrive in May, but season may be shortened by La Niña

Apr 30. 2020
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By THE NATION

The Royal Irrigation Department (RID) will stop monitoring water shortages on Thursday (April 30), while the Thai Meteorological Department is expected to announce that the rainy season will arrive in the third week of May, RID’s deputy director general Taweesak Thanadechopol said on Wednesday (April 29).

The Meteorological Department expects rainfall this year to be approximately 5 percent lower, adding that rains should last from the end of May to end June before drying up in July and August due to the La Niña effect.

La Niña is known to disrupt typical regional and global weather patterns in a manner opposite to that of El Niño.

Despite the dry weather expected to be brought by La Niña, Taweesak said the volume of water in dams nationwide should be more than last year. Currently, some dams have approximately 121 million cubic metres of water due to recent rainfall in some areas.

However, RID is worried that 59 provinces may still face water shortages in the near future.

So far, the country’s 447 large and mid-sized reservoirs are 47 percent full, but only 11.891 billion cubic metres or 23 percent of the water can be used.

Also, as of Wednesday, 27 provinces across the country are suffering drought, the Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation said.

Of the drought-hit provinces, seven are in the North, 10 in the Northeast and 10 in the Central and Western regions.

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