Drought and Precipitation Statement
Rainfall assessment of the country monthly average rainfall for January-February-March 2015 showed that most stations received rainfall Above their climatological normal(1981-2010) as indicated in the Table and Graph below.
January-February-March 2015 rainfall against (1981-2010)
Drought Outlook for the End of February
Forecast Drought Condition for Belize for the period May-June-July 2015 using Standaerdized Precipitation Index (SPI)
The Standardised Precipitation Index (SPI), developed by T.B. Mckee, N.J. Doesken and J. Kleist (McKee et al. 1993) of Colorado State University is an index that, if used carefully, can provide early warning of an extended drought period and aid in assessing drought severity. It can also provide similar information at the other end of the spectrum- extremely high precipitation. SPI is basically a representation of rainfall in units of standard deviation. Positive values indicate greater than median rainfall; negative values indicate less than median rainfall. Belize is now using this tool for early drought warning.
Table SPI classification (CIMH)
A three-month SPI analysis reflects short to medium term moisture and can give an indication of available moisture conditions at the beginning of the growing season. A six-month SPI analysis reflects medium term trends in rainfall and is effective in showing rainfall distribution over distinct seasons as well as being associated with anomalous stream flows and reservoir levels, which takes longer to manifest itself than does agricultural drought.
The rainfall forecast for May-June-July 2015 is going for Above Normal rainfall over Northern, Interior and Extreme South of the country and Normal rainfall along Coastal areas.
The table below shows the 3 and 6 months SPI for some stations across Belize.
The information contained herein is provided with the understanding that The National Meteorological Service of Belize makes no warranties, either expressed or implied, concerning the accuracy, completeness, reliability, or suitability of this statement. The information may be used freely by the public with appropriate acknowledgement of its source, but shall not be modified in content and then presented as original material.
Next Drought Statement will be issued in the first week of May 2015.