THE Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) announced on Friday, June 2, 2023, the start of the rainy season in the country.

In a statement, Pagasa said the occurrence of scattered thunderstorms, the passage of Super Typhoon Betty and the Southwest Monsoon (Habagat) that have brought widespread rains over the western sections of Luzon and Visayas over the past few days indicate the onset of the rainy season.

“However, breaks in rainfall events (also known as monsoon breaks) may occur, which can last for several days or weeks,” Pagasa said.

“Furthermore, a transition from ENSO-neutral to El Niño is favored in the next couple of months, with a higher chance of El Niño persisting up to the first quarter of 2024,” it added.

During ENSO-neutral, winds blow east to west across the surface of the tropical Pacific Ocean, bringing warm moist air and warmer surface waters toward the western Pacific and keeping the central Pacific Ocean relatively cool.

The El Niño phenomenon, according to Pagasa, increases the likelihood of below-normal rainfall conditions, which may bring dry spells and droughts in some areas of the country.

“However, enhanced Southwest Monsoon season (Habagat) may also be expected, which may result in above-normal rainfall conditions over the western part of the country,” said Pagasa.

The weather bureau said it will continue to monitor the weather and climate situation in the country. It urged the public and all concerned agencies to take precautionary measures against the impacts of the rainy season. (SunStar Philippines)