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Weekly Updates: Africa | Asia | Latin America

22 February 2011

Latin America Update #17

A mixed, but generally OK month in South America. The excessive flooding and drought both came to a close and a reasonably typical February has progressed.

Now I say 'typical' instead of 'average' because it would be extremely unusual for a month of rainfall to be average across something the size of a continent. However, other than a few locations, mainly in Brazil, the month was very typical of late January into February.

Heavy, but not flooding, rains took place along the Amazon River in northern Brazil. At the same time north of the major metro areas, became very dry. That was for a time very beneficial, due the flooding catastrophe that hit the region in January. However, the rivers and lakes have long since dried out and flooded areas are now dry again. Rain needs to return here soon so that what crops that were not destroyed will be able to make it to market.

Elsewhere around South America, heavy rains were observed along the French Guiana/Brazil border, but mostly falling in Cayenne. Heavy precipitation was also reported east of La Paz, Bolivia. Both incidents at the worst caused localized flooding. I'm continuing to watch Colombia just south of the Panama border. This was the epicenter of flooding last December. Since then it has trended dry, very dry at times. Harvests will likely be poor for any crops that should have been growing between mid-December and now. Next week does look like it may break out of this pattern, but I am a bit skeptical of some of the models.

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