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Pacific ENSO Update

3rd Quarter, 2012 Vol. 18 No. 3


HI Flag State of Hawaii
Seasonal Precipitation Summary

 

After the torrential rains experienced at the beginning of March 2012 on the western islands of Hawaii, the 2012 dry season started rather quickly in April 2012. April also marked the fourth year in a row where drought had persisted through the rainy season in Hawaii. Lower than normal rainfall in April kept leeward areas of Maui and the Big Island under extreme and severe drought conditions. Severe drought conditions cover the island of Lanai, while extreme drought conditions still persist in areas of Molokai.

Strong trade winds persisted for most of the month of May. Typical summertime trade wind weather patterns returned in June. There were a few upper-level disturbances in the area in June, but the inversion had been so strong that they did not have much influence on the weather, except for some days with increased high clouds. Below-normal rainfall during the second quarter of 2012 has already produced drought impacts over portions of Kauai and Oahu, both of which were drought free for the first few months of the year. Moderate drought has returned over the southeast half of Kauai and over leeward Oahu.

A summary of drought impacts in the state include: On Kauai, degraded pastures have been reported and ranchers having to reduce their herd size. On Oahu, pastures have also deteriorated and some ranchers have had to destock in the Waialua and Makakilo areas of the island. On Molokai, there is still a mandatory 30% reduction in irrigation water usage. On Lanai, pastures and general vegetation conditions have been very poor. On Maui, Pastures and general vegetation have been extremely dry especially on the leeward side of the island causing some ranchers to wean their cattle 2-3 months early to destock the pastures. Significant brush fires have also been burning this past month on Maui. On the Big Island over south Kau, a large brush fire damaged coffee and macadamia nut plants, and pastures. Pastures and general vegetation over most of the south Kohala District and portions of the north Kona District were in very poor condition. There is a very high risk of brush fires taking place in these areas. Ranchers have already destocked cattle, and water hauling continues as it has for many months.

Additional individual rainfall station information and specific island information for Hawaii can be found in the Monthly Precipitation Summaries.

Hawaii Rainfall Summary for Select Stations, 2nd Quarter and 1st Half 2012

Station  
April
May
June
2nd Qtr
1st Half
Lihue Airport
Rainfall (inches)
0.37
1.02
0.45
1.84
33.22
% of Normal *
19%
68%
35%
39%
124%
Honolulu Airport
Rainfall (inches)
0.24
0.05
0.07
0.36
7.56
% of Normal *
46%
13%
39%
33%
83%
Kahului Airport
Rainfall (inches)
0.34
0.59
0.40
1.33
4.02
% of Normal *
38%
120%
444%
90%
31%
Hilo Airport
Rainfall (inches)
6.63
6.56
6.36
19.55
50.74
% of Normal *
74%
89%
100%
86%
47%

* Hawaii station normals are defined as 1981-2010 CPC median values.



Climate Outlook:
The following comments are from the U.S. Climate Prediction Center’s Hawaiian Seasonal Forecast Discussion: Below normal temperatures are favored for Hawaii from August-September-October 2012 to November-December-January 2012-2013. The NCEP models show below-median precipitation for Hawaii from August-September-October 2012 to January-February-March 2013. The next long-lead outlook will be issued by the Climate Prediction Center on August 16th.

For more information on weather and climate in Hawai'i go to:
http://www.prh.noaa.gov/pr/hnl/ or http://www.cpc.noaa.gov/products/predictions/long_range/fxhw40.html



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: December 12 2012 23:18:26 GMT

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