Skymet: Rains to arrive in Mumbai late, to be weak: According to private weather forecasting agency Skymet, Mumbaikars may have to face summer heat for a few extra days as monsoon is set to arrive around 8 to 10 days late this year. According to Skymet, while the southwest monsoon usually hits the city between June 8 and June 10 — a week after the first rains in Kerala — the onset this year could take place between June 15 and June 18, or even as late as June 20.
The agency has also predicted a deficient rainfall in June and July across Maharashtra, including several drought-affected areas.
Despite the timely onset of monsoon last year, on June 9, the city is still reeling under acute water shortage due to the long dry spells that followed the initial two months of healthy rainfall.
The delayed onset and weak monsoon pose serious concerns for the city and the BMC, which has already imposed a 10 percent water cut in the city to ensure the stock lasts till the start of monsoon. As of May 12, there’s barely 15 percent water stock reportedly left in the seven lakes supplying water to the city.
Skymet has attributed the delay in onset to a lingering El Niño, a weather phenomenon in which warm ocean temperatures in the equatorial Pacific Ocean can lead to poor rainfall and more heat waves in the subcontinent.
Mahesh Palawat, vice-president (meteorology and climate change) Skymet, said, “Our weather models show the strong weather systems that are expected to develop by the first week of June and pave the way for the monsoon, are absent. As a result, the rains could be delayed by at least a week.”
While heavy rains can be ruled out at the start of the monsoon in Mumbai, things are likely to improve later on.
He further added, “Overall, Mumbai, and Maharashtra will see deficient rain in June and July, but this is expected to improve to normal levels in August and September.”
Palawat said the onset in Kerala, too, is likely to be delayed owing to a 60% chance of the El Niño influencing the monsoon between June and August.