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Somalia Rainfall Outlook for Gu 2020

The Gu rains start in March/April and end at different times across Somalia, depending on the north-south movement of the Inter-Tropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ) which is the leading factor for the timing of rainfall in most parts of Africa. Most of the annual rainfall in Somalia (75%) is recorded during the Gu season. As a result, performance of Gu season rainfall is critical both for crop-dependent and livestock-dependent livelihoods across Somalia. According to the consensus climate outlook for the Greater Horn of Africa (GHACOF54) issued in later January 2020, there is a strong possibility (greater likelihood) of March to May 2020 rainfall being average (35%) and above average (35-40%) in most parts of Somalia with likely warmer than usual temperatures across the whole country. This also includes the Ethiopian highlands which contribute significantly to both Juba and Shabelle river flows inside Somalia. Some areas in the far northwestern parts of Somalia, including Awdal, Woqooyi Galbeed and parts of Togdheer regions have higher chances of below normal (40%) to normal (35%) rains. The regional forecast further indicates a likely early start of the season in southern parts of Somalia. On the other hand, a delayed onset of the rainfall is expected over northern parts of the country which is also likely to have prolonged dry periods a few weeks after the start of the season. The expected average to above average rains will boost crop production prospects and replenish pasture and water sources in most parts of Somalia. This comes after a largely favorable rainy season during the October-December 2019 Deyr season, which will contribute to continued recovery among pastoral and agropastoral livelihoods that have previously been adversely affected by recurrent drought conditions. On the downside, riverine flooding along the Juba and Shabelle rivers is likely to occur along the entire channels of the two rivers. This will likely exacerbate the devastation that populations along the two rivers experienced during the 2019 Deyr season. Currently, there are many open river breakages along the two main rivers and this will likely worsen given the expected increase in river levels and consequent flooding during the forthcoming Gu season. SWALIM is in the process of updating the river breakages database which will be shared soon. Flash floods are likely to occur in low lying and built up areas especially in north east and central regions. The expected below normal rains in the far northwestern regions could lead to depletion of pasture and water resources with high likelihood of mild drought conditions towards the middle of the year. Therefore, communities should conserve and use available water resources judiciously. Despite the overall forecast described in the foregoing sections, local and month-to-month variations might occur as the season progresses. Sporadic rainfall events leading to flash floods are likely to occur even in areas with increased likelihood of near to below normal rainfall. Also, dry spells might occur in areas where enhanced rainfall is foreseen. FAO, through SWALIM and its technical partners, will keep updating this forecast for shorter lead time periods and share update information throughout the Gu season

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Somalia Tropical Storm Alert - Issued 06 December 2019

Tropical Storm PAWAN expected to lead to winds of medium strength with moderate to heavy rainfall amounts in parts of Somaliland, Puntland and Central regions of Somalia The Tropical Storm (TS) initially named SIX that developed in the northern Indian Ocean has now been assigned the name PAWAN after sustaining a speed of more than 39 miles per hour for two days. The probability of the TS landing in the coastal areas of Puntland has increased from (10% TO 35%) over the last two days and is expected to make a land fall in Nugaal region in the next 24 hours. The influence of PAWAN may start being felt in the coastal areas of Bari, Mudug and Sanaag regions in the next 12 hours where moderate to heavy rains and strong winds are expected. The rains will then spread further inland to many areas within Somaliland, Puntland and central regions on 07 and 08 December 2019. The storm poses an immediate threat to the shipping lane that links Somalia and Gulf states. Other impacts expected include destruction of property and infrastructure including roads, buildings and boats due to the strong winds. Flash floods may also disrupt normal activities along the tropical storm path. Communities living along this areas are advised to take necessary precautions. SWALIM and partners are monitoring the situation and will update you accordingly. For more details on tropical storm tracking you can consult: http://www.tropicalstormrisk.com/ or swalim@fao.org.

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Somalia Tropical Storm Alert - Issued 07 December 2019

Strong winds and heavy rains reported in coastal areas of Puntland as tropical storm PAWAN Makes Landfall The north eastern parts of Somalia experienced extreme weather in form of a tropical storm since 06 December 2019. The tropical storm named PAWAN was associated with strong winds and heavy rains in some parts of Puntland with most stations recording high amounts of rainfall. The extreme weather conditions have led to destruction of property and infrastructure including roads, buildings and boats. Currently, flash floods still threaten many areas following the heavy downpour that is still being experienced in some areas. The rains are expected to spread further inland to many areas within Somaliland, Puntland and central regions. SWALIM and partners are monitoring the situation and will update you accordingly. For more details on tropical storm tracking you can consult: http://www.tropicalstormrisk.com/ or SWALIM.

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Somalia Rainfall Forecast: Issued 09 December 2019

The coastal areas of East Arica have seen an increase in the frequency and strength of tropical storms since 2013, with one or two storms occurring each year since then. This can largely be attributed to climate change and the dynamic weather variation in the East African countries. Climate change studies further suggest an increase of such storms during the 21st Century. More studies are however needed to affirm and predict the storms timely for early action. Last weekend saw a tropical storm make landfall in the north eastern parts of Somalia. The tropical storm named PAWAN was associated with strong winds and heavy rains in some parts of Puntland with most stations recording more than three times their long term mean annual rainfall. For instance, Eyl recorded a total of 260mm while Dangoroyo received 198mm in two days. Other stations that recorded notable amounts include Hasbahale (80mm), Garowe (85mm), Iskushuban (75mm), Qardo (48mm) and Buuhoodle (52mm)among others. The extreme weather conditions led to livestock death as well as destruction of property and infrastructure including roads, buildings and boats. There has also been extensive erosion along the coast and inland. Currently, transport has been disrupted in many areas along the storm path making it difficult to render humanitarian assistance. Standing waters in some areas also pose an immediate danger of water related diseases. Positively, the heavy rains have been beneficial to the eastern parts of Puntland which had remained water stressed for a long period. There will be ground water recharge as well as pasture growth within these areas. The cumulative rainfall forecast for the next three and seven days (Map 1 and 2) indicates light to moderate rainfall in the southern regions and within the Ethiopian highlands. Consequently, this may lead to a further increase in river levels along the Juba and Shabelle Rivers. There remains a high risk of flooding along the Shabelle and moderate risk of flooding along the Juba in the coming week.

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Somalia Rainfall Forecast: Issued 03 December 2019

The cumulative rainfall forecast for the next three and seven days (Map 1 and 2) indicates an increase of rainfall activities towards the end of the forecast period. Specifically heavy rains are expected in the northern and central regions from 07 December 2019. Cumulative amounts exceeding 100mm may fall in coastal areas of Saanag, Bari, Nugaal and Mudug regions. Given the forecast, there is a high risk of flash floods in the areas where heavy rains area expected. Of great concern is the fisheries and livestock sectors along the coastal areas which may be impacted negatively by the heavy rains. River levels along the Shabelle remain high and are anticipated to remain so in the coming week. There remains a moderate risk of flooding along the river. Observed river levels along the Juba increased sharply over the last two days following heavy rains in the Ethiopian highlands. River levels at Luuq and Dollow are at moderate risk of flooding while levels at Bardheere are currently at high risk level. The high levels will be sustained in the coming days and are expected to start decreasing towards the end of the week.

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Somalia Rainfall Forecast: Issued 11 December 2019

The cumulative rainfall forecast for the next three and seven days indicates light to moderate rainfall in parts of southern regions and within the Ethiopian highlands. River levels along the Shabelle continued to rise and are currently very high along the entire reach. Flooding has been reported in parts of Belet Weyne district and the river is only 0.40m below the bank full level. River levels along the Juba have been fluctuating over the last week. Given the rainfall forecast and current situation, there remains a high risk of flooding along the Shabelle and low risk of flooding along the Juba in the coming week.

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Somalia Tropical Storm Alert - Issued 04 December 2019

Tropical Storm SIX expected to cause strong winds and some rains across Puntland and Somaliland A Tropical Storm currently centred in the north Indian Ocean near the coast of Puntland is expected to intensify further and move in a south western direction and cross Mudug coastal areas between Hobyo and Eyl districts on 06 December 2019. Under its influence, moderate to heavy rain are likely to cause flash floods in some regions including Mudug, Nugaal, Bari and Sanaag starting on 06 December 2019. Strong winds associated with the storm may cause destruction of weak structures and fishing gears along the coast. While current forecasts indicate a low probability for the cyclone (10%), if the cyclone makes a landfall, it could have a devastating impact. This is why SWALIM is issuing the Alert. Communities along the coast are advised to take necessary precautions in the coming days. SWALIM and partners are monitoring the situation and will update you accordingly. For more details on tropical storm tracking you can consult: http://www.tropicalstormrisk.com/ or consult SWALIM.

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Somalia Rainfall Forecast: Issued 05 December 2019

The cumulative rainfall forecast for the next three and seven days indicates moderate to heavy rainfall in most parts of the country starting form 06 December 2019. Specifically heavy rains are expected in the northern and central regions from 06 December 2019, these rains area associated with the passage of a tropical storm which is currently located in the Indian Ocean. Cumulative amounts exceeding 100mm may fall in coastal areas of Saanag, Bari, Nugaal and Mudug regions. Given the forecast, there is a high risk of flash floods in the areas where heavy rains area expected. Of great concern is the fisheries and livestock sectors along the coastal areas which may be impacted negatively by the heavy rains. Further, heavy rains will be expected on 09 and 10 December 2019 within the Juba and Shabelle river basins inside Somalia and within the Ethiopian highlands. River levels along the Shabelle remain high and are anticipated to remain so in the coming week. There is a high risk of flooding along the Shabelle River. Observed river levels along the Juba increased sharply over the last few days following heavy rains in the Ethiopian highlands. River levels at Luuq and Dollow are at moderate risk of flooding while levels at Bardheere are currently at high risk level. The high levels will be sustained in the coming days and are expected to start decreasing towards the end of the forecast period.

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Somalia Rainfall Forecast: Issued 26 November 2019

Rainfall of moderate to heavy intensities has been received in several locations across the country. The heavy downpour which started on 22 to 26 November 2019 led to flash floods in some places. Some of the places affected by flash floods include Erigavo and Zeylac districts in Somaliland which saw displacement of several households and destruction of property. Parts of Mogadishu were also flooded following a heavy downpour in the night of 25 November where 78mm of rainfall was recorded. Many stations in Puntland also recorded heavy rains during the last week which led to flash floods. The cumulative rainfall forecast for the next three and seven days is calling for a reduction of rainfall activities across the country as well as within the Ethiopian highlands with little or no rains expected after 27 November 2019. River levels along the Shabelle remain high and are anticipated to remain so in the coming week. There remains a moderate risk of flooding along the river. Observed river levels along the Juba continued to drop and are currently within the normal at this time of the year.

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Somalia Flood Update - Issued 07 November 2019

The Deyr rains continued into the second month of the season with many stations recording light to moderate rains in the southern parts of the country. Parts of central and Puntland areas recorded heavy rains on 2nd and 3rd of November. No rains were reported in Somaliland during the week in review. The good rains received so far have continued to replenish water sources further improving pasture growth and reducing water stress. There has been an improvement in livestock body conditions and milk production as well. Shabelle River: In Belet Weyne and surrounding areas, river levels reached its maximum carrying capacity on 24 October 2019 and has remained so up to date leading to overflow which left most of the town under water. The flood waters in the town have however started receding back to the river which is causing an increase of river in the downstream stations. Levels at Bulo Burti are currently very high and only 4cm away from the bank full level. Satellite image analysis further indicate inundation of more than 10,000 Hectares of agricultural land in Belet Weyne district. Unknown amount of crop land has also been inundated in Bulo Burti and Jalalaqsi districts. In Middle Shabelle, floods have damaged more than 65,000 Hectares of cropland at Jowhar and Mahaday Weyne following high river levels and open river breakages. The river levels are expected to remain high along the entire channel of Shabelle as more waters from the Ethiopian highlands are still streaming in. High risk of flooding remains along the Shabelle in the coming week. Juba River: Along Juba River the levels dropped gradually over the last week. The levels are expected to fluctuate in the coming week with a Moderate risk of flooding towards the end of the week. In Bay and Bakool regions: There was a reduction of rainfall activities in these regions over the last week which improved the situation in terms of flooding. Puntland, Somaliland and Central regions: A tropical storm named KYARR dissipated in the Indian Ocean before making a land fall in Somalia as earlier predicted. The much expected heavy rains and associated impacts were therefore not experienced. However, a few places in Puntland and central regions recorded heavy rains on the 2nd and 3rd of November which led to flash floods that destroyed property and death of livestock. The rainfall forecast for the coming week shows continuing rainfall activities in many parts of Somalia and in the Ethiopian highlands. As a result, the current high river levels, and ongoing riverine flooding, along the Shabelle river are expected to continue in the coming week. Flash floods will also be experienced in low-lying areas of Bakool, Bay and Galgaduud region. No significant amount of rains area foreseen in Nuugal, Bari and Mudug regions. Hot and dry conditions are expected to persist in the coming week calling a cause for concern due to the prolonged dry period which may lead to depletion of water resources and pasture in the coming weeks.

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