You are on page 1of 7

FIJI METEOROLOGICAL SERVICE

Private Mail Bag (NAP 0351)


Nadi Airport, Fiji.
Ph: +679 6724888, Fax: +679 6724050
Email: climate@met.gov.fj
Also online at http://www.met.gov.fj

Fiji Climate Outlook


November 2016 to January 2017
& February to April 2017

Issued: November 14, 2016


1.0

ISO 9001:2008
certified Climate
Services

*Volume 10 : Issue 11

HIGHLIGHTS

The tropical Pacific Ocean currently remains at El Nio-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) neutral levels;

Majority of international climate models indicate that the tropical Pacific Ocean is likely to remain at ENSO neutral levels through to the end of the 2016 and into early 2017;

Rainfall is predicted to be generally above average over most places through the November 2016 to January 2017
period;

The air temperatures are anticipated to vary around normal, while sea surface temperatures are favoured to be
above normal through the November 2016 to January 2017 period.;

The 2016/2017 tropical cyclone season began on 01 November, 2016 and ends on 30 April 2017. For Fiji, two to
three cyclones are predicted to pass through Fiji Waters this season, with one likely to reach or exceed category 3
status.

2.0

RAINFALL & TEMPERATURE OUTLOOK

NOVEMBER 2016 TO JANUARY 2017 RAINFALL OUTLOOK

The SCOPIC model favours generally above average rainfall over most parts of the country through November 2016 to
January 2017 period. The confidence in the SCOPIC predictions are generally moderate to very high. It is noted that the
global climate models favor average to above average rainfall in the Fiji region for the same period. High variability in
rainfall from one month to another remains possible.
The SCOPIC model rainfall predictions are as follows (Table 1):
Western Division
: Above average (Confidence - high to exceptional)
Central Division
: Average to above average (Confidence - very low to moderate)
Northern Division
: Above average (Confidence - moderate to very high)
Eastern Division
: Above average (Confidence - good to very high)
Rotuma
: Average to above average (Confidence - moderate)
Global Rainfall Models (e.g. ECMWF, NSIPP, IRI, NCEP, etc.):

The global climate models consensus outlook favour average to above average rainfall in the Fiji region during the November 2016 to January 2017 period (Figures 3a & 3b: two of the several global climate models that the Fiji Meteorological Service uses).
FEBRUARY TO APRIL 2017 RAINFALL OUTLOOK

The SCOPIC model rainfall predictions are as follows (Table 2):


Western Division
: Generally average to above average (Confidence - moderate to high)
Central Division
: Equal chances of below average, average and above average (Confidence - very low)
Northern Division
: Average to above average (Confidence - very low to moderate)
Eastern Division
: Average to above average (Confidence - low to moderate)
Rotuma
: Equal chances of below average, average and above average (Confidence - very low)
TEMPERATURE OUTLOOK:

The air temperatures are anticipated to vary around normal through the November 2016 to January 2017 period while
normal to below normal air temperatures are favoured for the February to April 2017 period (Tables 3 & 4).
The sea surface temperature in the Fiji region is favoured to be above normal through November 2016 to January 2017
period (Figures 2a & 2b: two of the several global climate models that Fiji Meteorological Service uses).
The X LEPS % scores, which are used to categorize the confidence of the outlook are as follows:
Very Low: X < 0.0
Low: 0 X < 5
High: 15 X < 25
Very High: 25 X < 35

Moderate: 5 X < 10
Exceptional: X 35

Good: 10 X < 15

*Prior to July 2006, the Fiji Islands Climate Outlook was incorporated in the Fiji Islands Weather Summary

Issued: November 14, 2016

Fiji Climate Outlook

3.0

EL NIO SOUTHERN OSCILLATION (ENSO) CONDITIONS

A.

Current El Nio Southern Oscillation (ENSO) Status

Volume 10 : Issue 11

El Nio-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) currently remains at neutral level, while some indicators such as cloudiness near the
Dateline shows La Nia like signals. However, sea surface temperatures (SSTs) in the central tropical Pacific Ocean and
the Southern Oscillation Index (SOI) remain at neutral levels.
Trade winds have recently strengthened in the western tropical Pacific, bringing the potential for some further cooling of
ocean waters. Recent strengthening of trade winds in the western Pacific brings the possibility of some further cooling of
ocean waters. This strengthening of the trade winds was due to active MJO pulse and it is likely to weaken in the coming
week. Overall, it does not appear that the tropical Pacific atmosphere and ocean are currently reinforcing each other, as it
does during development stages of La Nia event.
B.

El Nio Southern Oscillation Prediction

Most of the climate models favour the tropical Pacific Ocean will remain cooler than average, but ENSO status is likely to
remain neutral, through December 2016 to February 2017. Only one of the model suggest that the Pacific is likely to briefly reach weak La Nia levels towards the end of 2016.

Figure 1: Southern Oscillation Index (SOI) Graph


SOI (in bars) and 5
month running mean
(continuous pink line)
The SOI for October
was 4.3, with the 5
month running mean of
+4.9, centered on August. Sustained positive
values of the SOI
above +7 typically indicate La Nia.

Figure 2a: ECMWF Sea Surface Temperature (SST) for November 2016 to January 2017
ECMWF Seasonal SST
Forecast favours above
normal SSTs in the Fiji
region.
(http://www.ecmwf.int/
en/forecasts/charts/
seasonal/sea-surfacetemperature-publiccharts-long-rangeforecast)

Issued: November 14, 2016

Fiji Climate Outlook

Volume 10 : Issue 11

Figure 2b: UKMO - SST November 2016 to January 2017


NCEP Coupled Model
favours generally above
normal SST in the Fiji
region.
(http://
www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov
/products/CFSv2/
imagesInd3/
glbSSTSeaInd1.gif)

Figure 3a: ECMWF Rainfall Outlook for November 2016 to January 2017
ECMWF
Seasonal
Forecast favours normal rainfall in the Fiji
region.
(http://www.ecmwf.int/
en/forecasts/charts/
seasonal/rain-publiccharts-long-rangeforecast)

Figure 3b: IRI - Rainfall Outlook for November 2016 to January 2017
IRI rainfall forecast
favours for above normal rainfall in the Fiji
region.
(http://
iri.columbia.edu/ourexpertise/climate/
forecasts/seasonalclimate-forecasts/)

Issued: November 14, 2016

Fiji Climate Outlook

Volume 10 : Issue 11

Table 1: Three Months: November 2016 to January 2017 Rainfall Outlook


Dry

33 %

Normal

67 %

Wet

(%)

(mm)

(%)

(mm)

(%)

Dobuilevu
Penang Mill
Yasawa-i-rara
Vatukoula Mine
Rarawai Mill
Lautoka Mill
Vaturu
Nadi Airport
Nabou Pine

15
14
10
10
8
8
6
12
10

649.3
564.7
379.4
506.2
524.5
415.4
781.5
427.9
384.7

39
41
39
40
44
41
35
39
26

976.2
818.1
631.8
909.0
801.8
691.8
1115.1
750.2
659.7

46
45
51
50
48
51
59
49
64

Lomawai

10
5
11
34

382.0
324.1
430.0
1441.0

44
45
40
25

655.2
599.0
706.0
1864.2

46
50
49
41

Naduruloulou

25
40
30
33
24
28
31

853.4
865.8
682.5
813.0
731.9
775.7
831.6

37
24
30
27
32
27
31

1115.9
1157.0
1019.8
1158.0
1004.3
1042.0
1070.0

38
36
40
40
44
45
38

Eastern Division
St. Johns College, Levuka

27

495.8

33

823.4

40

Lakeba

21

459.6

33

670.6

46

Ono-i-lau
Matuku
Vunisea

10
18

310.1
358.0

38
37

514.9
587.7

52
45

22

443.8

35

634.5

43

15

648.6

38

890.7

47

Dreketi
Seaqaqa
Labasa Airfield
Savusavu Airfield
Wainigata
Udu Point
Matei Airfield

8
11
11
19
24
27

567.3
696.7
568.1
571.5
679.2
664.7

28
42
29
37
28
30

962.6
954.7
936.2
762.1
926.9
893.5

64
47
60
44
48
43

19

766.5

37

973.0

44

Rotuma

21

898.8

38

1078.5

41

Station (Locations in Figure 4)

Western Division

Olosara
Nacocolevu
Monasavu Dam
Central Division
Navua
Lami
Laucala Bay, Suva
Tamavua
Nausori Airport
Koronivia

Northern Division
Nabouwalu

The FMS uses the Seasonal Climate Outlook for Pacific Island Countries (SCOPIC) Model as its main guidance for predicting climate on a three to six
month timescale. SCOPIC bases its calculations on there being a correlation between sea surface temperatures and rainfall/air temperatures. For some
parts of Fiji e.g. the middle of the Dry Zone, this link is very strong. For others e.g. Suva, the link is not as strong, but it is still a useful indicator.
When calculating rainfall for example for the upcoming three month period (e.g. February to April 2015), SCOPIC uses measurements from the current
three month period (in this case November to December 2014) to look for similar ocean patterns in the historical record. The rainfall for the following three
month period are then used to calculate the probabilities for the outlook period.

Issued: November 14, 2016

Fiji Climate Outlook

Volume 10 : Issue 11

Table 2: Three-months: February to April 2017 Rainfall Outlook


Dry

33 %

Normal

67 %

Wet

(%)

(mm)

(%)

(mm)

(%)

Dobuilevu

31

860.8

32

1080.6

37

Penang Mill

23

827.4

37

1102.7

40

Yasawa-i-rara

20

542.9

38

818.5

42

Vatukoula Mine

19

853.5

35

1121.3

46

Rarawai Mill

24

774.8

36

1074.3

40

Lautoka Mill

25

677.2

35

926.3

40

Vaturu

1161.2

33

1476.7

58

Nadi Airport

20

658.9

36

910.1

44

Nabou Pine

13

644.9

34

836.6

53

Lomawai

19

559.0

38

795.3

43

Olosara

25

537.8

32

748.2

43

Nacocolevu

28

614.4

32

791.5

40

Monasavu Dam
Central Division

37

1283.4

37

1740.9

26

Tokotoko, Navua

32

999.0

37

1210.9

31

Lami

38

1051.4

28

1333.0

34

Laucala Bay, Suva

31

869.4

37

1080.7

32

Tamavua

39

994.0

31

1253.0

30

Nausori Airport

36

892.5

35

1045.3

29

Koronivia

29

918.7

39

1085.0

32

Naduruloulou

39

991.2

31

1282.6

30

St. Johns College, Levuka

31

629.3

21

896.2

48

Lakeba

20

628.5

39

819.3

41

Ono-i-lau

26

474.0

35

698.4

39

Matuku

24

524.2

40

717.5

36

Vunisea

23

628.2

37

825.5

40

Nabouwalu

27

775.3

33

1035.2

40

Dreketi

18

748.3

36

1022.2

46

Seaqaqa

25

870.0

35

1145.1

40

Labasa Airfield

28

781.0

32

1118.6

40

Savusavu Airfield

25

632.9

36

842.6

39

Wainigata

29

677.5

33

915.1

38

Udu Point

28

758.7

36

989.7

36

Matei Airfield

31

749.2

31

1012.8

38

Rotuma

31

896.2

34

1083.1

35

Station (Locations in Figure 4)


Western Division

Eastern Division

Northern Division

Issued: November 14, 2016

Fiji Climate Outlook

Volume 10 : Issue 11

Table 3: Maximum and Minimum Air Temperature Outlook - November 2016 to January 2017
Maximum Air Temperature

Minimum Air Temperature

Cool
(%)

Normal
(oC)

Warm
(%)

Cool
(%)

Normal
(oC)

Warm
(%)

Laucala Bay, Suva

49

29.8

51

59

23.2

41

Nadi Airport

69

31.2

31

54

22.3

46

Labasa Airport
Nabouwalu

62

31.5

38

54

21.8

46

48

29.4

52

61

23.8

39

Vunisea

42

29.1

58

49

23.0

41

Lakeba

46

29.5

54

51

23.5

49

Rotuma

57

30.4

43

69

24.6

31

Station
Selected Sites

Table 4: Maximum and Minimum Air Temperature Outlook - February to April 2017
Maximum Air Temperature

Minimum Air Temperature

Cool
(%)

Normal
(oC)

Warm
(%)

Cool
(%)

Normal
(oC)

Warm
(%)

Laucala Bay, Suva

55

30.4

45

63

23.7

37

Nadi Airport

68

31.1

32

60

22.7

40

Labasa Airport

63

31.4

37

60

22.1

40

Nabouwalu

49

29.9

51

68

24.2

32

Vunisea

53

29.7

47

61

23.5

39

Lakeba

53

30.1

47

66

24.1

34

Rotuma

59

30.5

41

70

24.7

30

Station
Selected Sites

Figure 4. Location of climate monitor ing stations in Fiji.


6

Issued: November 14, 2015

4.0

Fiji Climate Outlook

Volume 10 : Issue 11

TROPICAL CYCLONE SEASON 2016/2017 OUTLOOK

The Tropical Cyclone (TC) activity in the 2016/17TC season within the Regional Specialized Meteorological Center Nadi Tropical Cyclone Centre (RSMC Nadi-TCC) Area of Responsibility (AoR)
(Equator to 25South between 160 East and 120 West) is anticipated to be near average with high confidence. The official 2016/17TC season began on 01 November 2016 and ends on 30 April 2017.
Five to seven (5 to 7) tropical cyclones are expected to occur in the RSMC Nadi-TCC AoR during the
2016/17season. The average for all the 47 seasons from 1969/70 to 2015/2016 is 7.3 cyclones. The average for El Nio, La Nia and neutral seasons are 8.7, 6.5 and 6.4 tropical cyclones, respectively.
Tropical cyclone genesis trough is expected to be shifted to the west of the Dateline during the
2016/17season. This outlook is based on the status of the El Nio Southern Oscillation (ENSO) over the
preceding July to September period. During this period in 2016, neutral to weak La Nia conditions were
present and the International Climate Model Guidance indicates that the most likely outcome for the
2016/17 season is for neutral conditions to prevail. Therefore the seasonal outlook is based on weak La
Nia to neutral conditions. Historically, these conditions have favored a westward shift in tropical cyclone activity in the Southwest Pacific.
TC activity for Cook Islands, New Caledonia, Niue, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tokelau, Vanuatu and
Wallis & Futuna is predicted to be normal for this season, while there is reduced TC risk for Tuvalu and
French Polynesia.
Elevated TC activity is anticipated for F iji and Tonga. The risk for TC activity in the Kiribati area is
low.
For Fiji, as many as two to three (2-3) cyclones is predicted to pass through Fiji Waters this season with
one (1) anticipated to reach or exceed category 3 status. With the expectation of tropical cyclone genesis
to lie mainly in the Coral Sea area, there is high chance of TCs to approach Fiji from the Western and
Northern sectors. For those tropical cyclones passing close to the country, associated active cloud and
rain bands may occasionally affect Fiji with marked rainfall and possible flooding, including sea flooding
of lowMlying coastal areas.
It is critical that communities across Fiji pay close attention to all weather forecast, warnings and advisories issued by the Fiji Meteorological Service and whole of the country remain alert and prepared at all
times throughout the season.