***source-Caribbean Loop News, first published February 08
The Barbados-based Caribbean Drought and Precipitation Monitoring Network (CDPMN) Wednesday said as the region moves into the heart of its dry season, rainfall will continue to decrease.
“With the likelihood of normal to below normal rainfall in the northwest of the Caribbean during February to April 2023, this can, over Cuba in particular, result in short and long term drought, by the end of April and May respectively,” the CDPMN said in its latest Caribbean Drought Bulletin released here.
It said, like Cuba, interests in Hispaniola, parts of the Leeward Islands, Puerto Rico and St Vincent should closely monitor their water resources over the coming months since long-term drought can impact large rivers and groundwater.
CDPMN said that for the last three months of 2022, apart from Barbados that was slight to moderately dry, rainfall throughout the eastern Caribbean was normal to above normal.
It said short-term drought up to the end of March, is evolving across Western Cuba and that short-term drought might possibly develop in Antigua, Eastern Cuba, Guadeloupe, Northern Hispaniola, Southwest Puerto Rico and St. Kitts.
CDPMN said long-term drought, up to the end of May, might possibly develop or continue in St. Vincent, Western Cuba and the Dominican Republic.
“Areas ending in long term drought by the end of May are likely to experience lower than usual water levels in large reservoirs, large rivers and ground water,” the CDPMN warned, adding “we advise all stakeholders to keep monitoring their environment for signs of drought”.