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Interpretation of early March-May forecasts

  • Special Report
  • East Africa
  • February 3, 2012
Interpretation of early March-May forecasts

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  • Summary
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    • The March to May season is the major rainfall period for pastoral and agricultural areas of northern Kenya, southern Ethiopia, and most of Somalia, accounting for 50‐60 percent of annual rainfall in many parts of the sub‐region (Figure 1).  These rains are also critical for the secondary Belg season in Ethiopia.  
    • During January, FEWS NET’s East Africa analysis typically considers three seasonal rainfall outlooks: the IRI Multi‐Model Probability Forecast, the ECMWF Seasonal forecast, and the NOAA Canonical Correlation Analysis forecast. As of January 2012, all three forecasts have low skill for the March‐May period, meaning that they suggest equal probabilities of below‐normal, normal, and above‐normal rainfall.  


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