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Where might La Niña take a bite out of world food supplies?

07 July 2016, 19:23

Nairobi (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - With weather forecasters predicting a La Niña weather phenomenon coming on the tail of the strongest El Niño in 20 years, some countries are bracing for potential droughts and floods.

Meteorologists in Japan, Australia and the United States predict a 50 to 75 percent chance of La Niña developing in the second half of 2016.

La Niña occurs when surface waters in the eastern Pacific Ocean become colder than normal, but it generally does not affect weather as intensely as El Niño, when the Pacific Ocean warms.

Yet some regions already reeling from food shortages due to El Niño's negative impact on agriculture and livestock may again have to deal with La Niña's damaging weather conditions.

Here are forecasts of how La Niña might threaten food supplies around the world.


In parts of Ethiopia, South Sudan, Somalia and Kenya, there may be too little rainfall from November to March to ensure a successful secondary farming season. In other areas in Ethiopia as well as central and northern Sudan, La Niña could have the opposite effect, flooding areas and possibly damaging crops.

- Reuters

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