Monsoon rains usually account for about two-thirds of the total annual rainfall in India, and are crucial for kharif crops, which are largely grown in non-irrigated areas. (Representative Image)
New Delhi: The US Climate Prediction Center in its monthly forecast for June has said there is a 66 per cent chance of El Nino continuing through June-August as fresh areas in the central Pacific Ocean became warmer in May.
In May, the sea surface temperature in the central Pacific Ocean rose about 1.0 degree above normal and hit El Nino levels, while temperature below the surface was 0.8 degree above normal, the US Climate Prediction Center said.
The weather body has also predicted a 50-55 per cent chance of El Nino persisting in September-November.
El Nino is characterised by higher-than-usual sea surface temperatures in the east-central Pacific Ocean and typically linked with below-normal southwest monsoon in India. Of the 20 drought years in India since 1901, 13 are associated with El Nino.
Monsoon rains usually account for about two-thirds of the total annual rainfall in India, and are crucial for kharif crops, which are largely grown in non-irrigated areas.
The India Meteorological Department has predicted India's southwest monsoon to be near-normal at 96 per cent of the long-period average on the basis that El Nino will persist through India's monsoon months, but with reduced intensity.
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