The Philippines will not be experiencing the usual cooler weather that comes with the ‘ber’ months, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) reports.
This unusual climate is an effect of the prevailing El Niño, which is seen to be the strongest on record so far and continues to strengthen further.
El Niño to peak during country’s coldest season
The El Niño phenomenon is characterized by long, dry spells coupled with a few violent storms. Although its effects are already being felt all over the country, it is still expected to become worse, peaking towards the last quarter of the year and extending towards first quarter of next year. These are usually the coldest months of the year, something that will be affected because of the presence of this weather anomaly.
The warmer weather will be felt all over the country, says PAGASA Climate Monitoring and Prediction OIC Anthony Lucero. Even the usually cooler highlands found in Luzon and Mindanao will only be registering temperatures slightly above the average temperature all over the country.
Government fully prepared for El Niño effects
Malacanang assures the country that the government has been preparing for this, saying that President Aquino has been closely monitoring the situation.
The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) has made projections based on the progress of the El Niño, allowing the government to start implementing measures like cloud seeing and water preparation.
El Niño effects to start this month
Although expected to peak around the Christmas season, PAGASA reports that the country will start experiencing the El Niño effect this month. Lowlands around Luzon and Mindanao are expected to have temperatures that range from 22° to 33° Celsius. The Visayan region will continue to feel their usual temperature that range from 24° to 33°.
As for the more mountainous areas around Luzon, they are expected to have temperatures ranging from 16° to 22°, while mountainous areas in Mindanao will be experiencing 18° to 29°.
Once November to January rolls in however, the lowlands of Luzon will experience temperatures of 20° to 33.5°, the Visayan region will expect temperatures of 22.5° to 33°, and the Mindanao region will have temperatures of 23° to 33°.
One thing that Filipinos look forward to during the Christmas season is the cooler weather all over the country, but the El Niño’s strength this year could make that one less thing to look forward to during the holidays.
Special thanks to Greenpeace Southeast Asia for the main image.