Normal to below normal rains expected in most parts of Somalia during the Deyr 2017 season.
The Deyr rains are usually shorter and less in quantity than the Gu rains. However, they are beneficial in supporting agricultural activities and boosting water availability for different uses. Generally the season starts in late September and ends in November. Nevertheless, this varies from place to place across the country with the northern parts receiving the rains much earlier than the southern parts.
The Greater Horn of Africa Climate Outlook Forum (GHACOF) has confirmed a drastic reduction of the chances of experiencing an El Nino event during the September to December rainy season. The rainfall forecast indicates that the Deyr 2017 season in Somalia is expected to be normal (40% probability of normal rains) with a tendency of 35 % probability of below normal rains in most parts of the country. This also includes part of the Ethiopian highlands which contribute significantly to both Juba and Shabelle river flow inside Somalia. Further, the southern coastal regions of Lower Juba and Lower Shabelle are expected to experience normal rains (40% probability of normal rains) with a tendency of 35% above normal rains.
This forecast is a consensus forecast designed for a regional audience that addresses the rainfall totals summed over the three-month period from October to December 2017. However, SWALIM and other technical partners will keep updating this forecast for shorter lead time periods and will share with you through the regular bulletins throughout the rainfall season.
Given the existing conditions and the rainfall forecast, problems related to water scarcity are likely to persist especially in the northern parts of the country where the previous three rainy seasons were below normal. There is also potential for human-livestock conflicts over limited water resources in these areas. Close monitoring of the situation and contingency measures are necessary in order to adequately cope with the situation. However, flash floods cannot be ruled out as well as river line flooding due to weak river embankments and artificial river bank breakages for irrigation purposes.
Increased water supply is expected in areas where normal rains will be experienced. In such cases, communities should take advantage of the rains to harvest rain-water for future use, using simple technologies. On the other hand, in case of depressed rains replenishing of the surface water points may be minimal and therefore communities should use the available resources sparingly.
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