Drought: Rain won’t be enough to break drought’s back

Stuff.co.nz STACEY KIRK, March 16, 2013

New Zealand is braced with open arms to receive rain tomorrow, but it’s unlikely to improve the drought situation, scientists say.

Yesterday, Minister for Primary Industries Nathan Guy announced the entire North Island was in a state of drought.

According to the National Institute for Water and Atmospheric Research (Niwa) water tables around the country are more than 100mm in deficit.

Victoria University Associate Professor of Physical Geography James Renwick said tomorrow’s rain may generate some grass growth, but wouldn’t come close to replenishing the soil.

“[It’s] only a fraction of what’s required. What we need is one of these storms every three days for a month.”

MetService has forecast the remnants of ex-tropical cyclone Sandra to pass over much of the country tomorrow – bringing with it some heavy showers.

More: http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/8435234/Rain-won-t-be-enough-to-break-droughts-back

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