KUALA LUMPUR: The United Kingdom Meteorological Office has forecasted a high likelihood of El Nino striking Southeast Asia in the middle of the year.
Association of Water and Energy Research Malaysia (Awer) president, S Piarapakaran, said the institution, using the El Nino Southern Oscillation (ENSO) model, had forecasted a 70 per cent probability of El Nino in Southeast Asia.
The weather phenomenon is linked to dry spells in Southeast Asia.
According to Singapore's National Environment Agency (NEA), El Nino occurs every two to seven years and typically lasts about nine to 18 months.
A “very strong” El Nino year in 1997 led to a prolonged dry season in Singapore.
NEA said annual rainfall in Singapore that year was about half of the long-term average and the annual average temperature was 1.4 degrees Celsius above the long-term average.
According to Malaysian news agency Bernama, El Nino could lead to a dry spell lasting about six months for the country.
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