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Pacific ENSO Update

3rd Quarter, 2010 Vol. 16 No. 3


FSM Flag Federated States of Micronesia

Pohnpei State: Weather conditions on Pohnpei Island and the atolls of Pohnpei State during the first half of 2010 were generally unremarkable. A very dry February gave way to an immediate return of abundant rainfall in March. Water supplies and stream flow were reported to be adequate. As usual, Palikir topped the list of rainfall totals in Pohnpei State during the first half of 2010 with 111.50 inches (114%). This was the highest total rainfall observed throughout Micronesia during the first half of 2010. A few miles away at the WSO Pohnpei, the rainfall total for the first half of 2010 was 83.58 (93%). Rainfall totals at the atolls of Pohnpei State for the fist half of 2010 ranged from below normal (75%) at Pingelap, Mwoakilloa, and Nukuoro, to above normal (117%) at Kapingamarangi.

Pohnpei Rainfall Summary 2nd Quarter and 1st Half 2010

Station   April May June 2nd Qtr
1st Half
Pohnpei Island
Pohnpei WSO
Rainfall (inches)
22.76
13.72
13.17
49.65
83.58
% of Normal
138%
72%
77%
94
93%
Palikir
Rainfall (inches)
27.11
25.59
14.66
67.36
111.50
% of Normal*
153%
124%
79%
118%
114%
Kolonia Airport
Rainfall (inches)
17.37
11.40
N/A
N/A
N/A
% of Normal**
99%
73%
N/A
N/A
N/A
Atolls of Pohnpei State
Nukuoro
Rainfall (inches)
17.38
16.11
9.89
43.38
75.14
% of Normal
116%
109%
81%
103%
77%
Pingelap
Rainfall (inches)
9.66
6.26
12.46
28.38
66.98
% of Normal
56%
37%
77%
56%
75%
Mwokilloa
Rainfall (inches)
9.00
8.93
12.46
30.39
58.34
% of Normal
67%
57%
89%
70%
79%
Kapingamarangi
Rainfall (inches)
17.99
12.20
6.60
36.79
77.01
% of Normal
132%
118%
91%
118%
117%
* Palikir Normal defined as 108% of WSO Normal
** Kolonia Airport Normal defined as 86% of WSO Normal

Climate Outlook: Easterly low-level winds should continue to dominate throughout Pohnpei State for the next three months, with a well below-average number of days with west or southwest winds (i.e., the monsoon trough will rarely extend to Pohnpei's longitude). The weather patterns during the remainder of 2010 are anticipated to be analogous to the atmospheric weather patterns seen during 2008 when easterly winds and unremarkable weather (for Pohnpei) persisted for the whole year. Rainfall for the next foreseeable months of 2010 should be near normal. This risk on Pohnpei Island or any of the atolls of Pohnpei State of hazardous effects from tropical cyclones is anticipated to be very low for the remainder of the year.

Because of the easterly wind anomalies expected to dominate the low-level wind pattern across Micronesia and the equatorial Pacific, the sea level should continue to rise at most locations of Pohnpei State, particularly north of 4 degrees N, and sea level anomalies should approach or exceed those seen in the region during 2008. Higher-than-normal sea level will expose the reef margins of Pohnpei Island and the atolls of Pohnpei State to a heightened risk of hazardous surf, especially towards the end of the year (late November and December 2010). At this time of the year, the extra-tropical low pressure systems that move eastward from Japan may produce large northerly swells that will move south from their North Pacific origin and pass through Pohnpei State causing large waves to impact reefs and atolls as they did during December 2008. Gusty easterly winds coupled with higher than normal sea level often result in sea water splashing onto the airport causeway at high tide. This may occur more frequently than normal late in 2010 through early 2011 as the trade winds strengthen after their summer lull.

No typhoons or tropical storms are anticipated to adversely affect Pohnpei State during 2010, although several of the basin's tropical cyclones may begin as disturbances near Pohnpei. These will contribute to the expected normal rainfall.

Forecast rainfall for Pohnpei State from July 2010 through June 2011 is as follows:

Inclusive Period

% of Long-Term Average Rainfall /
Forecast Rainfall (inches)
Pohnpei Islands and Atolls Kapingamarangi
July - September 2010
95%
(45.63 inches)
100%
(22.70 inches)
October - December 2010
100% 100%
January - March 2011
100% 100%
April - June 2011
100% 95%

Forecast rainfall quantities represent BEST ESTIMATES given the probabalistic forecast for each particular season and station.

source: UOG-WERI



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Page Last Modified: August 12 2010 00:49:51 GMT

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