Financial Daily from THE HINDU group of publications
Tuesday, Oct 19, 2004
Climate & Weather
Agri-Biz & Commodities - Climate & Weather
N-E monsoon sets in over Tamil Nadu
Thiruvananthapuram , Oct. 18
A TROUGH of low pressure over the Southwest Bay of Bengal brought widespread rain overnight in Tamil Nadu marking the onset of northeast monsoon in parts of peninsular India.
Withdrawal of the predecessor southwest monsoon from the entire landmass, the Arabian Sea and the Bay of Bengal took place simultaneously. The end-season performance stands at 13 per cent below normal as arrived at earlier, said Dr M. Rajeevan, Director, Forecasting, India Meteorological Department (IMD).
The normal date of onset for northeast monsoon is around October 20 with a deviation of about a week on either side. The onset last year was on October 19 when the southwest monsoon had withdrawn four days ahead. In 2002, however, the onset was co-terminus with the clearing off of the southwest monsoon on October 25.
Past data suggests that during EL Nino years, the performance of northeast monsoon has been good. With a weak El Nino this year, the `monsoon in reverse' is expected to play out to true potential, according to Dr Rajeevan.
The IMD is not known to make a full-scale forecast of the northeast monsoon but the emerging consensus indicated a strong season this year. This is corroborated by forecasts made by the Climate Prediction Centre at the International Research Institute, Columbia University.
Earlier on Monday, withdrawal of the southwest monsoon set the stage for the northeast monsoon to break over Tamil Nadu, Pondicherry, Kerala and southern parts of Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka.
However, the onset phase saw rains being confined to mostly coastal Tamil Nadu and the neighbourhood.
Speaking to Business Line, Mr M.D. Ramachandran, Director, Met Office, Thiruvananthapuram, said that the system would bring rains to the southern districts of Kerala over the next two days.
Thiruvananthapuram and Kollam districts and the higher reaches of Idukki and Pathanamthitta are known to be the favourite playground for northeast monsoon in the State.
Sulur and Nannilam in Tamil Nadu recorded 8 cm of rain during the 24 hours ending at 8.30 a.m. on Monday.
Other significant rainfall figures are: Parangipettai and Kunda Bridge - 6 cm each; Tuticorin, Coimbatore and Chembarambakkam - 5 cm each. Chennai Airport recorded 2 cm and Nungambakkam, 1 cm.
Heavy rain has been forecast for coastal Tamil Nadu and Pondicherry during the next 48 hours.
Northeast monsoon season is the major period of rainfall activity over south peninsula, particularly in the eastern half comprising of the meteorological subdivisions of Coastal Andhra Pradesh, Rayalaseema and Tamil Nadu-Pondicherry.
For Tamil Nadu, this is the main rainy season accounting for about 48 per cent of the annual rainfall. Coastal districts of the State get nearly 60 per cent of the annual rainfall and the interior districts about 40-50 per cent.
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