The El Niño phenomenon does not exactly equate to total drought and rains will still be experienced in the coming months, PAGASA explained.
Local chief Sonny Pajarilla of the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) clarified that the occurrence of storms remains possible in the time of El Niño and it is even higher in Palawan, particularly during July.
“Our data tells us na mas maulan ang Palawan kapag buwan ng Hulyo at El Niño. Because El Niño is not equal to drought, El Niño is not equal to walang ulan,” he said.
PAGASA said that the existing super typhoon Betty might enhance the monsoon rains from the southwest monsoon or habagat particularly over western sections of MIMAROPA. The previous forecast said that the amount of rain showers could satisfy the criteria of the start of the rainy season.
It has now entered the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR) and was estimated at 1, 170 kilometers east of Central Luzon with maximum winds of 195 kilometers per hour (km/h) and gustiness of up to 240 km/h.
Pajarilla added that if there is an El Niño during the season of the southwest monsoon, storms will be observed in the months of June to September. During the season of the northeast monsoon or amihan, the amount of rain decreases starting November to March.
“Ang tendency kapag may El Niño malayo ang pinanggagalingan. Kapag malayo, lilihis. Kung malapit, babanggain tayo. Ibig sabihin mas marami ang bagyo, hindi matatagal at hindi masyadong dumidikit lalo na pag buwan ng July,” he said.
According to an El Niño alert issued by PAGASA, the weather phenomenon might emerge between June and July at 80 percent probability and might persist until the first quarter of 2024.
Pajarilla said that it could delay the onset of the rainy season in 2024.
The effect of El Niño may also differ in areas, according to PAGASA. Some areas may experience below-normal rainfall conditions to lead to dry spells and droughts; other areas like the western section of the country may observe above-normal rainfall conditions during the Southwest Monsoon season.
“El Niño ay isang pangyayari sa karagatan na makakapekto sa lagay ng panahon sa iba-ibang season,iba-iba ang epekto. Iba-ibang lugar, iba-iba ang epekto,”he said.
Meanwhile, PAGASA explained that even though May is declared under dry season, an occurrence of one storm is still expected based on the climatological data from 1948 to 2022. The month of July has the highest number of storm occurrences ranging from three to four storms.