As the El Niño-caused drought continues in the north Pacific, all three of the US-affiliated island nations have declared emergency conditions to speed government-provided relief. “Extreme drought continues across much of Micronesia” and is worsening, said Guam-based US National Weather Service officials in a bulletin last week.
The Marshall Islands was first to declare a drought emergency, then elevated it to a “disaster” last month, while Palau and the Federated States of Micronesia followed suit. US weather officials called current weather conditions impacting the north Pacific “one of the strongest El Niño events in recorded history.”
Palau is limiting city water to a few hours each week as the main reservoir and a river that normally supply the majority of the population have dropped to “very low levels,” according to officials. In Majuro, the capital of the Marshall Islands, city water is being rationed to four hours one day per week.
Guam weather officials predict rain will remain well below normal for two more months in most islands north of the equator.
Read more about this in the April 15, 2016 edition of the Marshall Islands Journal.