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08 August 2011

Asia Update #41: Muifa Heading towards China/North Korea border

Muifa continues to weaken, and is now targeting landfall somewhere near the border near the border of China and North Korea. It may graze western parts of South Korea on the way there. Elsewhere, rainfall continues to look good across most of south and southeast Asia as the Middle East remains seasonably dry.
Across Asia this week, all eyes remain on Muifa. Although the system has weakened significantly since it struck Okinawa. The storm is now down to winds of about 60 mph, or 100 km/h, and those wind speeds are going to continue to drop. Muifa has managed to miss Shanghai and Shandong province. Currently it is making its way towards the China- North Korea border. This could still be quite a disaster in North Korea as the countries infrastructure is not really capable of handling even a storm as week as Muifa.  Rough surf is likely around the Yellow Sea, and the western part of South Korea may get grazed by the storm as it heads north. After landfall Muifa will most likely move inland over Manchuria.
Precipitation has been looking much better across South Asia, with the only concerns left being in northeastern India, and a few scattered locations in eastern Gujarat, Orissa and isolated parts of the south. There are almost no large scale locations, outside of northeast India and eastern Bangladesh that still desperately need rainfall to prevent a large scale crop failure. Even in those locations that outcome is pushing towards the highly unlikely.

Southeast Asia is also improving. Rainfall deficits are dropping rapidly in Burma, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. Although this past week saw slight dryness in the region, the overall trend has been towards improvement. I am still concerned about the Mekong River not getting enough rainfall due to the on going drought in southern China.

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