Drought Conditions Persist in Ethiopia, Heavy Rainfall Continues over West Africa
Below average seasonal rainfall has led to “incredibly dry conditions” in parts of Ethiopia which continue to impact crops and livestock (ReliefWeb/FEWS NET). With El Niño conditions confirmed, it’s likely that drought conditions will continue affecting harvests beyond the upcoming “main rains,” which provides the water for 80% of Ethiopia’s agricultural production (ReliefWeb/UNICEF). Reports indicate that with only a few weeks left in the June-September rainy season, any additional deficits in rainfall is likely to also impact water availability (CPC). Over the next week, parts of eastern Africa are expected to see an increase in rainfall, with moderate to heavy rain over western Ethiopia.
On the other side of the continent, it is not drought, but heavy rainfall that is leading to agricultural concerns, as excessive moisture could pose a threat to crops in some areas of West Africa (CPC). Analysis of the rainfall over the past 30 days across many parts of this region indicate “the wettest conditions on record.” Widespread, heavy rainfall is expected to continue over the next week, increasing the risk of flooding over already-saturated ground.
RVA Country Profile: Ethiopia
This Week in Hazards
- Hurricane Ignacio crossed into the Central Pacific earlier today, making it at least the fourth tropical cyclone to pose a threat to the Hawaiian Islands this season. As of 1100 HST, Ignacio is located 1055 miles east-southeast of Hilo, Hawaii, with maximum sustained winds at 90 miles per hour (CPHC Advisory #12). Although no coastal watches or warnings are in effect, Ignacio is expected to strengthen over the next 48 hours, possibly becoming a major hurricane by Friday, and its track has not yet turned away from the state.
- Tropical Storm Erika is expected to continue moving through the Caribbean, on track to be near or over the Dominican Republic by Friday (NHC Advisory #12). As 1700 AST, Erika is located 175 miles west of Guadeloupe, bringing very heavy rainfall to parts of the Leeward Islands. Tropical Storm warnings remain in effect for Anguilla, British Virgin Islands, Monserrat, and St. Kitts and Nevis (CDEMA Situation Report #1)
- According to media reports, Papua New Guinea may be facing “the worst drought conditions in 20 years,” as persistent dry weather and frost continue to impact agriculture (Reuters). As of August 24, more than 1.8 million people have been affected by extreme weather, of which more than 1.3 million are most at risk because of drought conditions (PM of PNG). The most severely affected provinces have also been those with high concentrations of rural population, including Simbu, Southern Highlands, Enga, Eastern Highlands, and Western Highlands (UNDP).
Current Hazard Warnings
Tropical Cyclone: Ignacio (Central Pacific)
Flood: India, England (Southeast), Pakistan, West Africa, Australia (Victoria, New South Wales)
Storm: Malaysia (Eastern), Turkey, Indonesia, Canada (Quebec, Nova Scotia)
Wildfire: United States (Montana, California, Idaho, Oregon, Washington), Colombia, Canada (British Columbia)
Drought: Caribbean Islands, Central America, Ethiopia, United States (Western), Papua New Guinea
Extreme Temperature: Montenegro
Biomedical: West Africa
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