Optimism about good rainy season

While little to no rainfall is expected until at least the middle of October, outlooks are positive for summer rainfall starting from about November, a South African weather expert said.

03 September 2021 | Weather

ELLANIE SMIT







WINDHOEK

The bulk of Namibia is expected to experience increased chances of normal to above-normal rainfall for October to December this year.

According to the 25th Annual Southern Africa Regional Climate Outlook Forum, this will persist for most of Namibia until February.

The forum was held virtually from 30 to 31 August to present a consensus outlook for the 2021/2022 rainfall season over the SADC region.

According to the outlook, the bulk of SADC is likely to receive normal to above-normal rainfall for most of October to December, while the north-western part of Angola, most of the Democratic Republic of Congo, western and southern Madagascar, northern Malawi, northern Mozambique, western fringes of Namibia and South Africa, south-western United Republic of Tanzania and north-eastern Zambia are expected to experience normal to below-normal rains.

The January to March period is expected to yield normal to above-normal rainfall for most of the region except for the south-western fringes of Angola, the western fringes of Namibia and South Africa.

The climate scientists took into account oceanic and atmospheric factors that influence the climate over the SADC region, including the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO), which is currently in its neutral phase.

The ENSO is projected to evolve into a weak La Niña phase during the forecast period. There is also an increased chance of a negative Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD) and a neutral Subtropical Indian Ocean (SIOD) by the end of the March 2022.

Cooler temps

Meanwhile, South African weather expert Johan van den Berg said minimum temperatures will remain below average, and mostly below 10 degrees Celsius, in the central to southern parts of Namibia for at least the first three weeks of September.

According to him, it will be hot over the northern parts from about the second week of September.

“Little or no rainfall is expected until at least the middle of October. Outlooks are very positive for summer rainfall, starting from about November,” Van den Berg said.

Dams

According to the latest dam bulletin issued by NamWater this week, the total average level of Namibia’s dams stands at 80.9%, in comparison to 27.1% last season.

Namibia’s largest dam, Neckartal, is currently 96.3% full, while last season it was only 10.4% full.

In central Namibia, the average of the dam levels stands at 76.1%, compared to last season’s 69%.

In the south, the average level of the dams stands at 86.7% compared to last season’s 22.9%.

In the east of the country, the total average of the dam levels is 34.4%, which is only slightly more than last season’s 28.4%.

In other parts of the country, the Omaruru Delta located in the Erongo Region and the Omatjenne dams in Otjozondjupa are empty, the same as last season.

The Olushandja Dam in Oshana is 20.7% full, compared to last season’s 18.6%.

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