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It’s official! “TAG-ULAN” is here!

Just a week before the end of the month, PAGASA finally declared the onset of rainy season. In a press conference held at 11:00 AM today, PAGASA confirmed that all criteria for the official declaration had been satisfied, including the prevalent occurrence of thunderstorms, and the entry of the southwest monsoon or habagat.

Due to the warm and moist characteristics of habagat, intermittent to continuous rains and thunderstorms will be more frequent in the country. However, Mr. Anthony Lucero of the Climate Monitoring and Prediction Section (CLIMPS) of PAGASA explained that tag-ulan will be officially experienced over the Climate Type 1 areas, covering the western parts of Luzon and Visayas.

Its onset this year was quite delayed compared to the previous years. From 2000 to 2014, tag-ulan occurred during the last week of May to early June. Historically, the latest onset of the rainy season was in 1980, where it was declared during the month of July.

In their press statement, PAGASA said that the El Niño is still present and is expected to intensify into a moderate to strong one in the second half of the year. PAGASA Acting Administrator Vicente Malano further explained that within the next three months, near normal to above normal rainfall condition is expected.

From October to December this year, until the first quarter of 2016, way below normal rainfall will be experienced due to the El Niño. Mr. Lucero said that the full impact of this weather phenomenon will be felt on October with a 60 to 80 percent rainfall reduction, most likely to continue until December.

Based on the latest drought/dry spell outlook for July 2015, 31 affected provinces will experience improvement while 16 will experience the El Niño’s continuous impact. El Niño may gradually weaken in the early months of 2016, and may completely terminate by May next year. Despite the onset of the rainy season, the weather bureau advises the public to keep conserving water.

Meanwhile, PAGASA mentioned that an average of 11 to 16 tropical cyclones is still expected to enter or develop within the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR) until the end of this year.

Despite the constant presence of the intertropical convergence zone (ITCZ), dubbed as the breeding ground of low pressure areas, PAGASA Weather Forecaster Buddy Javier said that no weather disturbance is expected to affect the country within the next 3 days.