The weather has been quite strange of late with people talking about the cold and the heavy continuous rain for several days, but the most remarkable change in the weather conditions on the island is the historic 11.9 degrees Celsius recorded early Wednesday morning last week, June 21st at the Liku weather station on the eastern side of the island.
According to the Director of the Niue Met Services Mrs Rossy Mitiepo, this is the first time the temperatures recorded has dropped this low. It was 12.4 degrees Celsius recorded on the same day at the Vaipapahi station in the north and at Hanan Airport weather station on the western side of the island was 12.8 degrees Celsius.
“These temperatures were lowest from 5am and 7am. Met Technician verified the readings, and they were correct as recorded” said Mrs Mitiepo.
Rossy Mitiepo told BCN News that since they installed the new automated weather stations in Liku and Vaipapahi, they are able to record these temperatures and have timely access to data. “We now access data from the Automated Weather Stations at Liku and Vaipapahi. We can also see the temp difference between different locations. Having the AWS in place helps us understand more of our own climate. It is not only using Hanan Airport to account for Niue’s temp. Increasing the climate observation network is a significant progress for Niue.”
Meanwhile the island is still experiencing heavy rainfall despite shifting ENSO status to El Niño with predictions for drier conditions.
For this year, the total rainfall for March was 309.9mm with the highest daily rainfall of 40.2mm on the 12th of May. For the month of April, total rainfall was 315mm and the highest daily rainfall was on the 17th April at 115.8mm.Rain eased up somewhat in May with 150.3mm with the highest being 53.1mm on the 3rd May.
Mrs Mitiepo told BCN News that last year and earlier this year, Niue’s ENSO status was La Niña, with the island recording some of the highest rainfall ever recorded with February 2022 recording the highest ever rainfall recorded with 522.9mm and March 2022 was also very wet for the island recording 408.5mm in that month.
The current ENSO status for Niue is for El Niño Alert. “For Niue this means drier conditions and may result in a drought” said Mrs Mitiepo and the island should also expect severe tropical cyclones in the next Cyclone season starting in November 2023 until April 2024.