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Rain watch for September 14-20: Monsoon tad better, crop yields still uncertain

Lag in sowing of pulses, oilseeds and cotton continues but expected to improve over late into the season. Adequate and well-distributed rainfall will be key for crop maturity

Published: Sep 18, 2023 04:20:28 PM IST
Updated: Sep 18, 2023 04:29:21 PM IST

Rain watch for September 14-20: Monsoon tad better, crop yields still uncertainCumulative pan-India rainfall deficit in the period June 1 to September 17 has reduced to 8 percent, tad better than 10 percent in the previous week Image: Sanchit Khanna/Hindustan Times via Getty Images
 
Following a deficit rainfall in six consecutive weeks, monsoon made a comeback covering most part of the country, which also increased storage levels of water reservoir. However, uncertainty over crop yields remains while adequate rainfall over the rest of the season will be critical to narrowing the rainfall deficit, according to an analysis by Barclays based on data provided by Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) data.

Cumulative pan-India rainfall deficit in the period June 1 to September 17 has reduced to 8 percent, tad better than 10 percent in the previous week, shows IMD data. After receiving normal rainfall in most of the states across country, certain states such as Kerala, Bihar, Jharkhand and some states in North East region have received deficient rainfall.

Rain watch for September 14-20: Monsoon tad better, crop yields still uncertain

The rainfall deficit reduced moderately in northwest, central and southern regions, but remained in ‘large deficient’ in the east.

Overall monsoon rainfall is likely to be above normal over India as a whole, says IMD, but El Niño conditions are likely to further intensity and continue up to early next year. 

Also read: Rain watch for Sept 7-13: Monsoon weak, crop yields uncertainty rises


Rain watch for September 14-20: Monsoon tad better, crop yields still uncertain

According to the IMD, positive Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD) conditions are prevailing over the Indian Ocean and are expected to strengthen in the coming months. The Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD) is referred as the difference  sea surface temperature between two areas (or poles, hence a dipole) – a western pole in the Arabian Sea (western Indian Ocean) and an eastern pole in the eastern Indian Ocean south of Indonesia. The IOD also affects strength of monsoon over the Indian subcontinent.

Rain watch for September 14-20: Monsoon tad better, crop yields still uncertain

As of September 14, storage in key reservoirs was at 66 percent compared to 62 percent the previous week, but is still lower than last year at this stage of the monsoon season. Current water level at 88 percent of the 10-year average is lower than the historical average for this point in the season. Rainfall needs to improve materially over the rest of the season for reservoir levels to reach previous years’ trajectory, says Barclays.

Rain watch for September 14-20: Monsoon tad better, crop yields still uncertain

Sowing rice, coarse cereals, and sugar cane was above last year’s levels. What is lagging in sowing area is pulses, oilseeds and cotton and may improve over last year’s acreage this late into the season. Adequate and well-distributed rainfall will be key for supporting crop maturity.

Rain watch for September 14-20: Monsoon tad better, crop yields still uncertain

 (Forbes India presents a weekly series Rain Watch where we simplify rainfall status, water reservoir levels and sowing pattern of kharif crops data analysis by Barclays)

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