Afghanistan

Afghanistan Seasonal Monitor: May 6, 2021

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Irrigated winter wheat affected by dry conditions in parts of the southern and western regions

KEY MESSAGES

• Cumulative precipitation from October 1, 2020, to April 30, 2021, has been near average to slightly above average in some northeastern, central, and eastern parts of the country (Figure 1). Cumulative precipitation deficits persist in the rest of the country as of April 30.

• Precipitation from mid-February to April in eastern, southeastern, central, northern, and northeastern parts of the country has led to favorable soil moisture conditions for spring wheat cultivation in many areas. However, field reports indicate that uninterrupted spring precipitation has delayed spring wheat cultivation in parts of Badakhshan and Takhar provinces.

• According to the eMODIS Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) for the dekad ending April 30, below-average crop and rangeland conditions are likely in many southern, western, northern, and northeastern parts of the country (Figure 2). Concern for irrigated wheat progress according to NDVI anomalies is highest in Faryab, Nimroz, Zabul, and parts of other northern, western, southern, and southeastern provinces, while concern for rainfed wheat progress is highest in Jawzjan, Herat, Badghis, and parts of other northeastern, northern, and western provinces. Overall, concern is highest in the southern and western regions where conditions have been driest.

• As of May 1, snow cover has completely depleted in most of the northwestern, western, southwestern, and southern basins. Rapid depletion of snow since midJanuary has led to early completion of seasonal cycles in these basins. Snow water volumes (SWV) are observed to be below average levels in eastern and northeastern basins with perennial cycles (Figure 3).

• According to GFS forecasts for the week ending May 10, up to 80 mm of precipitation is expected across much of the country during this period, except in parts of south and west. There is an increased likelihood of flash flooding occurring in places that receive significantly above-normal precipitation.

• According to international forecast models, average precipitation is expected during the start of the dry season in June and July. Above-average temperatures are expected to continue through at least July