Regional network: Concerns over drought continue

Bridgetown – The Barbados-based Caribbean Drought and Precipitation Monitoring Network (CDPMN) Monday warned that with many parts of the Caribbean, particularly in the east, experiencing below normal rainfall in January 2022, concerns over drought continue.

In its latest Caribbean Drought Edition, the CDPMN said significant concerns over short term drought that can impact soil moisture availability, streams and small rivers by the end of May 2022 exist in United States Virgin Islands and St. Maarten.

“Significant concerns exist over long term drought that can impact large rivers and reservoirs, and groundwater by the end of May 2022 in most of the eastern Caribbean islands, the ABC (Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao) islands and portions of Belize.”

The CDPMN said that apart from those countries with significant concerns over drought, interests in southern Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, western Cuba and northern Bahamas should continue to monitor their water resources.

The CDPMN said that conditions throughout the eastern Caribbean were predominantly normal to below normal during the month of January.

It said Trinidad and Antigua ranged from moderately dry to normal; Tobago and St Vincent slightly dry; Grenada, St Croix and St Thomas normal with Barbados moderately dry while St Lucia was predominantly slightly dry ranging to moderately dry in the north.

It said that Dominica experienced extremely dry to normal weather with St Kitts slightly wet in the south to predominantly normal and Anguilla slightly dry in the extreme south to predominantly normal. The situation in Jamaica ranged from moderately wet in the south to moderately dry in the extreme northwest.

Grand Cayman was moderately wet. Cuba was predominantly normal, ranging to moderately dry in the southeast and slightly wet in the extreme north, while northern Bahamas ranged from extremely wet to normal and Belize was normal.

The CDPMN said that long term drought to the end of May is evolving in Antigua, parts of Belize, the ABC islands, Dominica, Guadeloupe, St Lucia, Martinique, Saint-Martin and the US Virgin islands.

“Areas ending up in long-term drought by the end of May, may experience significantly reduced water levels in large reservoirs, large rivers and ground water during the dry season”. (CMC)

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