SUVA, (FBC NEWS/FIJI TIMES) — Climate scientists say the El Nino Effect will continue to have a major influence on the climate and ocean for the rest of this year and much of 2016.
It’s likely to hit its peak towards the end of 2015 and remain so until about June.
Climate Scientist Andrew Tate says Fiji and other Pacific islands nations will experience more irregular weather patterns in the coming months.
“There is a risk of extreme rainfall events even where drier than normal conditions are forecast. El Nino events have also been associated with an increased risk of coral bleaching and changes in tuna catch. Impacts vary from event-to-event and across the region.”
Fiji Meteorological Service director Ravind Kumar said a strong El Nino was now established in the tropical Pacific, which continues to strengthen.
“It is almost certain to continue through the October to December 2015 period and very likely through the early part of 2016,” he said.
Kumar said they would continue to monitor the weather pattern.
And with the country approaching the cyclone season, he urged the public to monitor weather patterns and to be always prepared.
Weather experts from across the Pacific met in Suva during the First Pacific Islands Climate Outlook Forum.
For Fiji, outer islands and parts of the West and North are already being supplied drinking water.
Tate says maintaining access to safe drinking water and sanitation is already a daily challenge.
Pacific Island countries including Fiji experienced the worst El Nino phenomenon in 1997 through to early 1998.