March to May 2024 Seasonal Forecast: Wetter than normal Conditions Predicted for most parts of the Greater Horn of Africa

21 Feb, 2024 Press Release 108

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21st February 2024, Kampala, Uganda: The IGAD Climate Prediction and Applications Centre (ICPAC) released the March to May 2024 seasonal forecast which indicates a higher probability of wetter-than-normal conditions across most parts of the Greater Horn of Africa. Notably, the areas expected to experience these wetter conditions include Kenya, Somalia, southern Ethiopia, South Sudan, Uganda, Burundi, Rwanda, and north-western Tanzania.

The highest probabilities for wetter than usual conditions are indicated in central to western Kenya and in the cross-border areas of Ethiopia, Kenya, and Uganda. The expected enhanced rainfall is likely to positively impact agriculture, water resources, and overall livelihoods.

An early to normal rainfall onset is expected in several parts of the region. These include parts of northern Tanzania, eastern Rwanda, southern and western Uganda, western Kenya, south-western Somalia, and parts of south-central Ethiopia.

The ICPAC director Dr. Guleid Artan noted that, " Due to the increased rainfall recorded in the October to December 2023 period, along with the forecast of wetter-than-normal conditions from March to May, there is an elevated risk of flooding in areas prone to floods. The forecast underscores the urgency for coordinated action and preparedness, emphasizing the need for proactive measures to mitigate potential impacts and capitalize on the opportunities presented by the forecast rainfall. Let us unite in our commitment to leveraging climate information for resilient and sustainable development across our region."

He further added that, “while the food security situation may improve with wetter than usual conditions, it is important to remember the multiple challenges faced by the region, including the historic 2020-2022 drought, conflict in various parts of the region such as Sudan, and the El Nino-induced floods at the end of 2023. This has weakened communities’ coping capacity, making them highly susceptible to food insecurity. The likelihood of flooding during the 2024 MAM season in parts of the region could, lead to a deterioration in food security in localised areas.”

The objective temperature forecast indicates an increased likelihood of warmer than normal surface temperatures over the entire region. Probabilities for warmer than normal temperatures are most enhanced over Sudan, northern South Sudan, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Djibouti, Somalia and southern parts of Tanzania.

In line with the World Meteorological Organization's guidelines and recommendations, ICPAC has adopted an objective seasonal forecast method to generate climate forecasts for the Greater Horn of Africa. February 2024 initialized seasonal forecasts from nine Global Producing Centres (GPCs) were utilized and processed using three calibration techniques to develop the MAM 2024 seasonal climate outlook.

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This press release is available in:

Kiswahili

French

Arabic

Somali

Amharic

Note to Editors:

The 66th Greater Horn of Africa Climate Outlook Forum (GHACOF66) was convened as a hybrid event on February 21st, 2024, by the IGAD Climate Prediction and Applications Centre (ICPAC). The forum was organised in collaboration with the National Meteorological and Hydrological Services across the region, along with other partners, with the primary objective to issue the seasonal forecast for the period of March to May 2024.

We encourage media and climate information users to consult our weekly and monthly updates of the forecasted season: www.icpac.net

For downscaled information, please get in touch with National Meteorological and Hydrological Services.

ICPAC technical report for the MAM season 2024

For media interviews and requests, kindly contact:

Paula Machio, +25474651194, paula.machio@igad.int

Emebet Jigssa, +254 748108077, emebet.jigssa@igad.int

Edwin Kiplagat, +254724874765, Edwin.kiplagat@igad.int