Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Brace for naughtier El Nino 
which could start Nov-June

TAGBILARAN CITY, October 27 (PIA)--Brace for a naughtier "El Nino," warns the state weather bureau through its local station in Bohol. 

Speaking at the Kapihan sa PIA which tackled the forecasted long dry season which the country is set to experience starting next month, Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration Bohol Officer in Charge Leonardo Samar said that scientists have noticed the increase in surface water temperature or sea surface temperatures (SST) at the central equatorial Pacific. 

Start conserving water and its prudent use, plant drought resistant crops and be ready with measures needed to cope with the long dry season, the weather bureau reminds. 

El Nino is warm phase of the El Nino Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and is often associated with a band of warm ocean water that develops in the central and east-central equatorial Pacific and this refers to the cycle of warm and cold temperatures, as measured by SST. 

El Niño is accompanied by high air pressure in the western Pacific and low air pressure in the eastern Pacific.

The cool phase of ENSO is called La Nina, with SST in the eastern Pacific below average and air pressures high in the eastern and low in western Pacific. 

While the El Nino is a natural global phenomenon occurring in 7-10 years interval, it usually occurs toward Christmas, thus the name, sources said. 

Pag-asa's Samar revealed that international weather center have tracked the long droughts associated with the ENSO in the past years and noted an trending increase in SST since 1957-58. 

In 1972-73 El Nino, experts tracked an increase in SST at 2.1 degrees, the first time the sea surface temperature breached 2, according to Samar.

By 1997-98 however, the central pacific temperatures reached 2.4 degrees, which was the strongest ever. 

Conservation.org called the 1997-98 as the big El Niño of 1997–98 when it killed as many as 1200 people and damaged $33 billion properties worldwide. 

This year, 2015-2016, experts have noticed 2.3 degrees increase in SST this early, and warns of a Godzilla El Nino brewing in the Pacific. 

In Bohol, where agriculture is basically what preoccupies people, a strong El Nino means below normal rainfall beginning October to as far as June of next year. 

Worst forecasts are for January and March in 2016, where experts see a way below normal rainfall compared to the already below normal rains in the other months. 

As this happens, PAG-ASA then calls for people to be wary about water use and conservation, especially in irrigations and home.

The Department of Agriculture, over this has urged farmers to disrupt rice planting if only to introduce drought resistant crops in a bid to adapt to the rainless season threatening. 

Moreover, Bohol has been egging to implement cloud seeding operations, under the condition that the operation would maximize the effects of artificial rain to the farms and the province's dams and water impounding systems. (rac/PIA-7/Bohol)

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Haze eases, visibility in 
Tagbilaran now 12 kms 

TAGBILARAN CITY, October 27 (PIA)--The state weather bureau through their station in Dauis Bohol has said the haze which temporarily disrupted airport operations in Tagbilaran has eased. 

Believed to be air carrying dust particles and forest fire residues travelling thousands of miles from their possible origins in Indonesia, the haze which blanketed several areas in Bohol for days, has slowly dissipated, said Leonardo Samar of the local weather bureau. 

"We now have visibility recorded at 12 kilometers," Samar, who came to the Kapihan sa PIA said. 

Last Saturday, the haze, which was reported over Tagbilaran has disrupted plane flights and temporarily shut-down the city airport, stranding hundreds of passengers and diverting hundreds more off their Bohol landing. 

"It was bad, we noted only 7 kilometers visibility," Samar told radio listeners at the radio forum beamed on air. 

"This is lesser than the usual 14 kilometer visibility which the usual hazy Tagbilaran affords," the Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration officer in charge bared. 

Pag-asa maintains visibility sensor stations here and despite the data these sensors give, pilots landing their planes in Tagbilaran still count on visual checks by men at the Tagbilaran tower to advise visibility bulletins during fog, heavy to intense rainfall and haze, Pag-asa said. 

Although not categorically saying it was indeed haze produced from the reported Indonesian fires, Pag-asa also noted that the southeast monsoon could have pulled the smoke characterized by air particles, dust, salt and smog in the atmosphere to the Philippines. 

The haze circulation across Asia could also be enhanced by tropical storm Lando, which drew its winds from the Habagat. 

The reported fires in Indonesia have consumed huge patches of pristine forests and emitting thick smoke which has strained relations between the country and its neighboring Singapore, Malaysia and areas in Brunei. 

These areas have suffered hazy days owing to the smoke which did not dissipate as easily. 

Satellite images have shown the smoke cover over huge parts of Indonesia drifting towards the northeast, in the general direction of the Philippines, days after. 

Asked on the possibility of recurring haze, Pag-asa said with the northeastern monsoon starting, the easterly winds could most likely blow the haze back to the southwest, away from the Philippines. (rac/PIA-7/Bohol)

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