Outlook for rain positive

01 Jan 2016 17:10pm
WINDHOEK, 01 JAN (NAMPA) - The dams that supply Windhoek with potable drinking water are expected to be filled by the end of January 2016 if the rain experienced over the past week continues.
The Namibia Meteorological Services’ chief forecaster, Odillo Kgobesti told Nampa this week the hopes are high for more rainfall.
In a statement issued by the Office of the City of Windhoek’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO) earlier this month, the City announced a water crisis in relation to its drought management plan and issued a warning for residents to use the natural resource sparingly.
Windhoek is supplied with water by three dams – the Omatako, Von Bach and Swakoppoort dams. The weekly bulletin by Namwater for 14 to 21 December indicated that the Swakoppoort Dam’s water level stood at 10.918 million cubic metres (Mm3) or 17.2 per cent full and Von Bach at 11.287 Mm3 or 23.2 per cent full; while the Omatako Dam is empty.
When full the dams stand at the following levels: Swakoppoort 63.489 Mm3; Von Bach 48.560 Mm3; and Omatako 43.499 Mm3.
“What we are expecting is converting storms. These are storms that cause runoffs,” Kgobetsi said, explaining that about 50 millimetres of rain (mm) is expected for Windhoek until the end of January 2016, which will cause flash floods and runoffs into the dams.
“That is most likely because of the heat occurring over most parts of Namibia, and we are expecting hail storms.”
He explained that the sufficient moisture airmass over Namibia coupled with a slightly higher temperature will trigger heavy storms, and therefore will result in runoff from rivers and streams.
The news that the capital will be receiving the much needed rainfall will be welcomed by Windhoek residents and by the rest of the nation as the county is battling a drought.
According to Kgobetsi, prospects are looking favourable for farmers in the northern, eastern and central parts of the country.