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Sanjeev Kumar Patro

Bhubaneswar: When the pandemic is seemingly bent on eclipsing the recuperating Indian economy, will the monsoon prove a double whammy for the Indian economy, including Odisha? How the monsoon 2021 is going to pan out for Odisha?

If the Met scientists are to be believed, the weather conditions to date emanate positive signs about the Indian Summer Monsoon. The country's lead weather agency IMD will soon (by Mid-April) comes out with its first forecast on the Indian Summer Monsoon.

However, the precipitation outlook for the monsoon months (June - September) in India recently released by the APEC Climate Centre reveals big.

WILL MONSOON ONSET BE ON TIME?

During 2016 -2019, the onset of Monsoon in India had been in the second week of June. In 2020, the Monsoon onset over Kerala was on June 1.

If the deterministic multi model ensemble (MME) data with the APEC climate centre is to be believed, the Monsoon onset date over Kerala will be between May last week to June first week this year.

The prediction shows that Kerala, Karnataka and Maharashtra are going to witness above normal rainfall during the first month of Monsoon in 2021. Though above normal rainfall is predicted for central and peninsular India (except Tamil Nadu), Odisha and Andhra Pradesh are predicted to receive good downpour which will be higher than the rainfall in the counterpart states like MP, Telangana, Jharkhand and West Bengal.   

MONSOON DATE WITH ODISHA

As per the model predictions by the APEC climate centre, the Monsoon onset over Odisha will be between June 8- 13. And the State will receive above-normal rainfall during the month of June. The deterministic model predicts a near 1.2mm/day above the normal average rainfall per day in June.

JULY: The month will not witness the heaviest downpour like June. Though the rainfall in the State is predicted to remain marginally above normal, north Odisha districts are predicted to get bountiful rain.

AUGUST: While the precipitation in August in states like Kerala, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu will be highly below normal, Odisha is predicted to receive above-normal rainfall.

SEPTEMBER: As per the model forecast by APEC, Odisha will record rainfall that will be marginally above normal. If the model predictions are to believed, then western, southern and central regions of the State will record more rainfall than the coastal region, including Bhubaneswar.

PHENOMENON BEHIND NORMAL MONSOON

Since the El-Nino Southern Oscillation (ENSO) conditions are predicted to remain negative (0.5deg C), Met scientists term it as a neutral ENSO condition.

"The APCC ENSO Alert suggests 'INACTIVE'. During February 2021, negative sea surface temperature anomalies were observed over the equatorial Pacific. The negative Niño3.4 index of around -0.5℃ is expected during April-September 2021. Based on the running 3-month mean Niño3.4 index, the latest APCC ENSO outlook suggests an around 60 per cent chance of neutral conditions during April-June 2021, which is expected to gradually decrease but still remain above 50% through July-September 2021," reads the ENSO Alert notice.

BOUNTIFUL JUNE, WHY LATER MONTHS NOT PLENTIFUL?

As per APEC and IMD ENSO report, the Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD), known as the Indian Nino, will remain neutral till July. The IOD conditions will turn negative thereafter. This negative turn will bring rain misery for Kerala and other peninsular states. Odisha will also not repeat the bounty of June in later monsoon months.

WHAT IS IOD? This is a variation of temperature observed between the tropical western and eastern Indian Ocean. If the waters in the eastern part of the Indian ocean (near the southern tip of Australia) gets warmer and the ocean waters in the west (around India and the southern tip of Africa) becomes cooler, this condition then hinders the progression of the monsoon.

This is the reason behind the prediction of deficient rainfall in the southern peninsula after July, observe monsoon watchers.

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