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Long term drought still a concern in the region

Long term drought still a concern in the region

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BRIDGETOWN – The Barbados-based Caribbean Drought and Precipitation Monitoring Network (CDPMN) on Monday said that in recent months, rainfall deficits have been accumulating in some parts of the Caribbean, particularly in the northern half of the eastern Caribbean chain, and parts of The Bahamas and Belize.

“Whereas there is little concern for short term drought by the end of December 2021 in these parts of the Caribbean, there is some concern over long term drought by the end of November 2021 that can impact large river and reservoirs and ground water,” the CDPMN said in its latest Caribbean drought bulletin.

It said that this is particularly so over the northern portion of The Bahamas, but the northern portion of the eastern Caribbean and southern Belize should closely monitor their water resources.

According to the CDPMN, for the period June to August, mixed conditions prevailed over the three month period in the eastern Caribbean.

It said Trinidad ranged from extremely wet to normal west to east; Tobago moderately wet to slightly dry; Grenada very wet; Barbados moderately wet; St Vincent and St Lucia slightly wet to normal;  dry; Dominica was predominantly normal to moderately dry with Antigua slight to moderately dry; St Kitts predominantly normal to slightly dry.

Jamaica ranged from exceptionally wet in the northwest and southeast to moderately wet in the west and normal in the northeast, while the northern Bahamas was slight to severely dry and Belize ranged from normal in the west to moderately dry in eastern areas.

The CDPMN said long term drought situation is evolving in the Bahamas and “might possibly continue” in southern Belize, Dominica, Martinique and the USVI.

“Areas ending up in long term drought by the end of November may experience lower than usual water levels in large reservoirs , large rivers and ground water, which would become a concern for the 2021-22 dry season,” it added. (CMC)