NiMet releases 2020 Rainfall Predictions
The Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NiMet) has released 2020 Seasonal Rainfall Prediction (SRP) report to guide various sectors of the country.
Minister of Aviation, Sen. Hadi Sirika made this known in Abuja during a public presentation of 2020 Seasonal Rainfall Prediction (SRP) and 2019 climate review.
According to him, NiMet predicts in the SRP Report that the onset of the growing season expected to be near-normal to earlier than normal in most parts of the country.
"The predicted 2020 onset of the growing season is expected to be near-normal to earlier than normal in most parts of the country with earliest onset date likely to occur on the 24th of February along the coastal zone of the south-south states.
"While states like Sokoto, Kebbi, Zamfara, Katsina, Jigawa, Yobe and Borno are predicted to likely have their onset from 2nd of June.
"Cessation; a normal to earlier than normal cessation date is expected across the country, the earliest cessation date of around the 26th of September 2020 is
expected around my state Katsina and the northern part of Sokoto.
"While the latest cessation date is expected on the 28th December 2020 around the Niger-Delta region.
"The length of the growing season; a normal to longer than normal length of the season is generally predicted across the country, and in the year 2020, the length of the growing season is expected to span 110-160 days in the Shelian region of the north and 210-280 days in the south.
"Rainfall amount: A normal to above normal rainfall is expected generally in the country, it is expected that the total rainfall amount will range from 400mm of rain in the north to about 3000mm in the south of the country."
According to the minister, Pre-onset rainfall, which is a false onset; before the full establishment of the onset of the planting season over the various ecological zones, a couple of rainfall events are expected to occur which could be enormous and tend to give a false start of the season.
``Such rainfall events are not uncommon, however, their frequency seems to be on the rise; farmers should therefore avoid early planting during this period to avoid losses.
``Dry spells: that a severe dry spell that may last up to 10 to 12 days is expected
in the following states; Niger, Bauchi, Jigawa, Sokoto, Za mfara, Katsina, Kano,
Kebbi, Yobe and Borno in the months of June and July, which may last between 2-3 weeks after the onset.
The minister advised farmers to adopt soil-moisture conservation techniques to avoid crop losses during this period.
Sirika said ``Flash floods: the normal to near normal rainfall pattern in the country does not rule out the possibility of isolated flash floods due to increasing high intensity rainfall at the peak of the season, especially in areas that are naturally prone to flooding’’.
For his part, Prof Sani Mashi, Director General of NiMet, said the agency will continue to serve the public with meteorological reports and updates in order to help them make informed decisions.(NAN)