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30 June 2014
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Ethiopia: El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and the main Kiremt rainy season in 2014/15
  An assessment using FAO’s Agricultural Stress Index System (ASIS)

 Current meteorological forecasts indicate a 70 percent probability of El Niño occurring during the Northern Hemisphere’s summer and 80 percent during the autumn or winter

 The effect on agriculture will depend on the timing and severity of the El Niño, as well as the crop calendar in a particular region

 In Ethiopia, an El Niño event is associated with an increased probability of above-average Belg rains (March-May) while the impact on the main Kiremt rains (June-September) is not straightforward

 In this update, the impact of the El Niño conditions over the Ethiopian Kiremt rains and the associated Meher main harvest in the 1985-2013 timeframe is explored Using FAO’s Agricultural Stress Index. Results show a rather mixed picture, indicating the importance of other climatological factors that also that have a sway on the June to September rainfall

 In 2014, the start of the main Kiremt season rains (June-September) is so far adequate in main crop producing areas and current weather forecasts point to average to above average rainfall levels for the remainder of season.

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