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Pacific ENSO Update

1st Quarter, 2012 Vol. 18 No. 1


FSM Flag Federated States of Micronesia

Chuuk State:  The annual rainfall throughout Chuuk State was well above normal during 2011. Twelve-month totals were in the range of 160 to 180 inches across Chuuk Lagoon and in the Mortlocks. The 163.85 inches at the WSO Chuuk was 122% of normal, and only the 12 th time in a 68-year record (including the Japanese data from 1932-37 and the post-war record from 1951-present). This puts the 2011 annual rainfall total at the Chuuk WSO in the top 20% wettest years. 2011 annual rainfall was below average only at Fananu in the north, and at Polowat in the far western side of Chuuk State. Polowat was much drier than at other locations in Chuuk State, and it is possible that the archived normal values for this site are too high, and refinements and corrections to outer-island rainfall statistics remain important tasks for the PEAC Center and others. Although it was very wet during 2011 in many parts of Chuuk State, there were no exceptional daily extremes, and no reports of any major damage from flooding or landslides. The rainfall did hamper a major road construction project on the main island of Weno in the lagoon. No tropical cyclones affected Chuuk State during 2011.

Chuuk State Rainfall Summary 4th Quarter 2011

Station   Oct Nov Dec 4th Qtr Annual
Chuuk Lagoon
Chuuk WSO
Rainfall (inches)
11.14
14.44
14.01
39.59
163.85
% of Normal
83%
140%
129%
114%
122%
Piis Panew *
Rainfall (inches)
*
*
10.50
*
*
% of WSO
*
*
97%
*
*
Southern Mortlocks
Lukunoch
Rainfall (inches)
6.38
14.02
28.38
48.74
183.66
% of WSO
48%
136%
261%
141%
137%
Ettal
Rainfall (inches)
11.59
11.67
21.98
45.24
182.26
% of WSO
86%
113%
203%
131%
136%
Ta
Rainfall (inches)
1.50
9.86
12.18
23.54
170.17
% of WSO
11%
95%
112%
68%
127%
Northern Atolls
Fananu
Rainfall (inches)
9.25
12.33
2.47
24.05
119.24
% of WSO
69%
119%
23%
70%
89%
Onoun
Rainfall (inches)
15.47
15.94
8.06
39.47
161.53
% of WSO
115%
154%
74%
114%
120%
Northern Mortlocks
Losap
Rainfall (inches)
9.43
12.48
8.46
30.37
156.60
% of WSO
70%
121%
78%
88%
117%
Nama
Rainfall (inches)
5.71
9.22
14.88
29.81
167.56
% of WSO
43%
89%
137%
86%
125%
Namoluk
Rainfall (inches)
5.19
12.25
15.22
32.66
164.42
% of WSO
39%
119%
140%
94%
122%
Western Atolls
Polowat
Rainfall (inches)
3.30
5.80
7.09
16.19
68.34
% of Normal
28%
63%
77%
53%
57%

* Data not available. New observer in training at Piis Panew.

Climate Outlook: During 2012, it is anticipated that the current La Niña conditions should slowly fade back to ENSO-neutral by June or July. In this scenario, easterly low-level winds typically dominate throughout Chuuk State. Rainfall is typically average to above average, with heaviest rainfall confined to an east-west band known as the trade-wind trough/convergence or Inter-Tropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ). Through the spring months, the location of the ITCZ produces a gradient of rainfall, with higher amounts to the south (e.g., Ettal and Lukunoch) and lower amounts to the north (e.g., Fananu, the Lagoon area and Losap). No early season (January through June) tropical cyclones are expected to occur within Chuuk State. Later in the year however, (especially during Oct, Nov and Dec) as the monsoon works its way eastward into the region, a few tropical depressions and/or a tropical storm may develop within Chuuk State.

Predictions for Chuuk State from January 2012 through December 2012 are as follows:

Inclusive Period
% of Long-Term Average Rainfall /
Forecast Rainfall (inches)
Chuuk Lagoon, Losap, and Nama
Polowat
Northern Atolls and Islands

Southern
Mortlocks

January - March 2012
90%
(23.19 inches)
90%
(23.19 inches)
90%
(23.19 inches)
110%
(28.34 inches)
April - June 2012
110%
100%
100%
120%
July - September 2012
110%
95%
110%
110%
October - December 2012
100%
95%
100%
100%

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

source: UOG-WERI



Pacific ENSO Applications Climate (PEAC) Center
c/o NOAA NWS - Weather Forecast Office Honolulu
2525 Correa Road, suite 250
Honolulu, HI 96822
(808) 956-2324

Web Master's email: peac@noaa.gov
Page Last Modified: March 22 2012 05:05:10 GMT

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