rain, rain, monsoon

According to weather department data, Kerala has been receiving heavy rainfall for the past few days, resulting in excess rain in May. (Photo: PTI)

Monsoon According to the India Meteorological Department (IMD), Cyclone ‘Amphan’ made landfall in Kerala on Thursday, two days ahead of its usual landfall date, and has moved towards most parts of northeast India.

Cyclone Ramal, which crossed West Bengal and Bangladesh on Sunday, has diverted the monsoon flow towards the Bay of Bengal, leading to the possibility of early arrival of monsoon in the Northeast, meteorologists said.

“The southwest monsoon has entered Kerala and further advanced into most parts of northeast India today, May 30, 2024,” the IMD said in a bulletin.

According to weather department data, Kerala has been receiving heavy rainfall for the last few days, resulting in excess rainfall in May.

On May 15, the weather department had announced the onset of monsoon in Kerala by May 31. The normal date of onset of monsoon in Kerala is June 1; in Arunachal Pradesh, Tripura, Nagaland, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Manipur and Assam it is June 5.

What does ‘onset of monsoon’ mean?

The onset of monsoon in Kerala marks the start of India’s southwest monsoon season, which runs from June to September, accounting for more than 70 percent of the country’s annual rainfall. The event is crucial to India’s economic agenda.

According to the IMD, the advent of the monsoon signals a significant change in the broad atmospheric and oceanic patterns over the Indo-Pacific region.

The department issues this declaration only when specific, well-defined criteria established in 2016 are met. Primarily, the IMD assesses the uniformity of rainfall, its intensity and the prevailing wind velocity in the specified areas.

How does IMD announce the arrival of monsoon?

The arrival of monsoon in Kerala is officially declared on the second day if at least 60 per cent of the 14 specified stations – Minicoy, Amini, Thiruvananthapuram, Punalur, Kollam, Allapuzha, Kottayam, Kochi, Thrissur, Kozhikode, Thalassery, Kannur, Kudlu and Mangalore – record 2.5 mm or more rainfall for two consecutive days after May 10.

Monsoon in India

The IMD on Monday said that India’s central monsoon region is expected to receive above average rainfall this season. “We are quite confident that the rainfall will be above average,” the IMD said.

The Meteorological Department said that there will be more than normal rainfall across the country during the monsoon season from June to September.

According to the IMD, in terms of quantity, the southwest monsoon seasonal rainfall over India is projected to reach 106 per cent of the long period average, with the model error margin being plus or minus four per cent.

IMD Director General Mrutyunjay Mohapatra said the country is likely to receive normal rainfall (92-108 per cent of the long-term average of 166.9 mm) in June.

The IMD said that “La Nina weather conditions appear to be developing during July-September,” indicating that India is “likely to receive normal rainfall (92-108 per cent of the long period average of 166.9 mm) in June.”

How do La Nina weather conditions affect the monsoon in India?

La Nina weather conditions can significantly affect the Indian monsoon, often leading to above-normal rainfall and an increased risk of flooding.

During a La Niña event, sea surface temperatures in the equatorial Pacific Ocean become cooler than normal. This cooling strengthens the trade winds and increases rainfall over the western Pacific and parts of Southeast Asia, including India.

The Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Climate Center has also predicted that India is likely to receive above normal rainfall during its peak monsoon season from July to September 2024, attributing this forecast to the expected transition from El Niño to La Niña conditions.

IMD’s Monsoon Mission coupled forecasting system has also indicated the possible development of La Nina conditions during the monsoon season in India.

scorching heat in india

India is currently experiencing severe heat, with temperatures reaching between 44 and 53 degrees Celsius in many regions, including northwest and central India.

The Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) has issued a severe heat wave warning in several states including Rajasthan, Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh, Delhi and Gujarat. The heat wave is expected to continue in some areas till the onset of the monsoon season.

According to the data of the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD), the temperature in Delhi reached 52.3 degrees Celsius on Wednesday, which is the highest temperature so far. However, a sudden light drizzle on Wednesday evening brought some relief to the people of Delhi.

The jump in temperature comes a day after three weather stations on the outskirts of Delhi recorded temperatures close to 50 degrees Celsius. Mungeshpur, Narela and Najafgarh weather stations have reported extreme temperatures this week.

On Sunday, Phalodi in Rajasthan recorded a temperature of 49.8 degrees Celsius, the highest in India. Mungeshpur in Delhi recorded a temperature of 48.3 degrees Celsius. Jhansi recorded a temperature of 47.7 degrees Celsius, while Faridkot in Punjab recorded a temperature of 47.4 degrees Celsius.

When is a heatwave declared?

The Centre said a heatwave is declared in an area “when the actual maximum temperature is 45 degrees Celsius or more than the normal maximum temperature.”

According to the IMD, a heatwave is declared “when the maximum temperature at a station rises to at least 40 °C or above for plain areas, 37 °C or above for coastal areas and at least 30 °C or above for hilly areas for two or more days.”

(With agency inputs)

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