India Monsoon Case Study: July 16, 2020

India Monsoon Case Study: July 16, 2020

This case study series includes weekly reviews of the monsoon season as it unfolds across India. The 4 month monsoon, [June-September] accounts for 75% of rainfall in India. Nearly half of India’s farmland, without any irrigation, depends on annual June-September rains to grow crops such as rice, maize, sugarcane, cotton, soybeans, pulses and vegetables. 

Observed Rainfall Patterns

This report will cover Nepal, Bhutan, and Bangladesh in addition to India. The monsoon has brought deadly flooding to Assam in India as well as Bangladesh, Nepal and surrounding areas. These areas are have been much wetter than normal over the past 30 days but the monsoon activity is subdued in Delhi which has a 40% rainfall deficit.

IMD scientists said the distribution of rains has been largely uneven this year. The standardised precipitation index shows many districts in eastern, central and peninsular India are ‘severely wet’ category while others are ‘mildly wet’. aWhere’s weather data supports these trends as well.

Forecast Rainfall Patterns

The forecast for the next 7 days shows wetter than normal conditions in areas that have been hard hit by monsoon rains such as Assam and other areas in the northeastern region. The Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) stated that the forecast for Delhi shows low rainfall as the monsoon moves north. Kerala still remains much drier than normal.

The monsoon season started strong in June and aWhere will continue to monitor the progression of these critical Karif rains.

Locust Threat

“Summer breeding has commenced along both sides of the Indo-Pakistan border where numerous swarms are present mainly in Rajasthan, India. Hatching and band formation will increase during this month in Rajasthan and northern Gujarat (India) as well as adjacent areas of Tharparkar, Nara and Cholistan deserts (Pakistan). A few swarms continue to be seen further east in Uttar Pradesh, India and at least one swarmlet reached the central plains of Nepal on 12 July where they are likely to disperse or return towards Rajasthan without causing significant damage or breeding. A few residual populations remain in the spring breeding areas of southeast Iran and southwest Pakistan.” (Desert Locust Watch, FAO)

FAO Desert Locust Watch

Regional Highlight: Assam, India & Bangladesh

The Assam region has seen tremendous rainfall over the past 30 days and will continue to see rains over the next 7 days. Areas of northern Bangladesh has also experienced high rainfall over the past 30 days and there is rain in the forecast for the northern region specifically. 

Weather Variability and Trends

aWhere’s robust and complete weather data from over 40,000 weather stations in the region can be used to generate actionable insights. Changes in weather patterns and impact on crops and food security can be accessed by looking at the past 15 years, today, and 15 days into the future. For the location below, the coefficient of variation* (CV) for precipitation is 45% and precipitation over potential evapotranspiration (P/PET) is also 45%. CV is a measure of variability and anything above 20% is considered highly variable, at 45%, these charts show how variable the rainfall has been in this location particularly in 2019 and 2020 for the period of mid-June to mid-July. Weather variability makes it difficult for farmers to plan farm operations because it is difficult to predict how the weather will behave.

Farmers need real-time information and forecasts to make better decisions about when to plant, fertilize, and harvest. Monitor these trends using aWhere’s Interactive Weather Map of India. Sign up for a free adaptER Platform account to get started.

Disclaimer: The designations employed and the presentation of the material on these maps do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of aWhere concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries.

Recommendations

aWhere’s localized, daily weather data can help governments get ahead of weather events by looking at historical trends coupled with weather forecasts.  Indian farmers need in-time weather-based insights to make informed crop management decisions to increase productivity, profitability and resilience.  Fortunately, the tools and partnerships  now exist to address this knowledge gap – today. 

Please contact us for more information on partnering to build a brighter future for farmers in India.