After The Hottest February Since 1877, What To Expect This Summer? IMD Forecast For March To May Is In

After The Hottest February Since 1877, What To Expect This Summer? IMD Forecast For March To May Is In

by Karan Kamble - Wednesday, March 1, 2023 05:44 PM IST
After The Hottest February Since 1877, What To Expect This Summer? IMD Forecast For March To May Is InIMD has given its summer season forecast for 2023.
  • Expect a hot summer if you're not living in peninsular India.

    The probability of heat wave occurrence rises from March to May.

India Meteorological Department (IMD) has shared its India weather forecast for the upcoming hot weather season (March to May 2023) and for March.

Broad takeaway: Most of India, save for the peninsular part of the country, is likely to experience severe summer. The probability of heat waves will rise from March to May.

Temperature Outlook For The Summer

  • Most parts of the country are going to face hotter than usual weather.

  • These parts include North East India, East India, and Central India, and some parts of North West India. Other parts are likely to experience normal to below-normal maximum temperatures.

  • South peninsular India is likely to face normal to below-normal minimum temperatures.

Heat Waves Anywhere?

  • A heat wave is a period of abnormally high temperatures. In India, a heat wave is called when the maximum temperature exceeds the average temperature by 4.5 degrees Celsius.

  • Temperatures of 40 degrees Celsius in the plains, 37 degrees Celsius in the coastal areas, and 30 degrees Celsius in the hills are markers to call a heat wave.

  • “Forecasts suggest an enhanced probability for the occurrence of heatwave over many regions of northwest and central India,” IMD said, in the March-May period.

  • In March, Central India faces a low probability for a heat wave occurrence.

March 2023 Weather

  • Most parts of the country are likely to be hotter than usual this month.

  • Peninsular India, though, will catch a break, with the likelihood of normal to below-normal maximum and minimum temperatures.

What About Rains In March?

  • Rainfall is likely to be at normal levels for the country as a whole. 

  • The long period average (LPA) of rainfall over the country in March, based on data from 1971 to 2020, is about 29.9 mm. March 2023 is likely to get 83-117 per cent of LPA.

  • Many areas of North West and West Central India and some parts of North East and East India are likely to receive below-normal rainfall.

  • Normal to above-normal rainfall is likely over most parts of peninsular India, parts of East Central India, and some isolated pockets of North East India.

Sea Surface Temperature (SST) Conditions

  • El Nino Southern Oscillation (ENSO) conditions and the Indian Ocean SST are among the factors that influence Indian climate.

  • The La Nina conditions prevailing over the equatorial Pacific region are likely to weaken and turn to ENSO neutral conditions.

Record Hot February

  • February 2023 was the warmest February on record — since 1877.

  • The average maximum temperature for the month clocked 29.54 degrees Celsius.

  • Prolonged absence of rainfall activity, clear skies, and persistent anticyclone conditions were the major reasons for the hyperwarm February.

  • Whether this excessive heat was linked to global warming could not be said, Subhash Chander Bhan, an IMD scientist, told the press, stating that a diagnosis would be necessary. “But we are living in a warming world, and this is part of the entire global warming,” Bhan said.

Seasonal forecasts, both for hot and cold weather seasons, have been a routine affair for IMD since 2016. This time around, IMD’s improved forecasting model is based on the newly developed multi-model ensemble (MME)-based forecasting system.

IMD will provide its forecast for the monsoon season in mid-April.

Karan Kamble writes on science and technology. He occasionally wears the hat of a video anchor for Swarajya's online video programmes.

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