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Sample Forecast for India

Summary for India

Synopsis: A strong El Niño is expected to gradually weaken through spring 2016, and to transition to ENSO-neutral during late spring or early summer.

A strong El Niño continued during December, with well above-average sea surface temperatures (SSTs) across the central and eastern equatorial Pacific Ocean. All weekly Niño indices decreased slightly from the previous month. The subsurface temperatures in the central and eastern Pacific, while still well above average, weakened due to an upwelling equatorial oceanic Kelvin wave. Significant low-level westerly wind anomalies and upper-level easterly wind anomalies continued over much of the tropical Pacific. During the last week, another westerly wind burst occurred in the east-central Pacific. The traditional and equatorial Southern Oscillation Index (SOI) values remained strongly negative. Also, convection remained strong over the central and east-central tropical Pacific, and suppressed over Indonesia. Collectively, these atmospheric and oceanic anomalies reflect the continuation of a strong El Niño episode.

Most models indicate that a strong El Niño will weaken with a transition to ENSO-neutral during the late spring or early summer. The forecasters are in agreement with the model consensus, though the exact timing of the transition is difficult to predict. A strong El Niño is expected to gradually weaken through spring 2016, and to transition to ENSO-neutral during late spring or early summer.

ENSO events typically translate to drier than normal conditions in India.

Temperature

February

Much of the western two-thirds of the country should be 0.4 to 1.5 degrees C above normal. From New Delhi east through West Bengal and to Nagaland and Arunchal Pradesh temperatures should be closer to normal with the southern third of the country between 0.6 and 1.5 degrees C above normal.

March

Much of the southern half of the country should be 1.0 to 1.5 degrees C above normal. From New Delhi east through West Bengal and to Nagaland and Arunchal Pradesh temperatures should be closer to normal in the western Himalaya region.

Precipitation

February

Much of the country should be near normal. This is a relatively dry month for much of the country and anomalies are only slightly wetter from Kolkata south to Vishakhapatnam, far northwest and far eastern states and Mahadhya Pradesh.

March

Much of the country should be near normal to slightly wetter than normal but this is historically a very dry month over all but the northeast and far northwest of the country and possibly southern Gujarat but this is from an extremely dry monthly average and should not be a concern. This is a relatively dry month for much of the country and anomalies are only slightly wetter for many areas.