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The December Outlook indicates that Alaska is forecast to be warmer than normal, especially the western half of the state where temperatures are expected to be the hottest in 20 to 40 years. Malaysia, Indonesia, Papua, and New Zealand also stand out with intense hot anomalies predicted. Much wetter than normal conditions are forecast for northern Ukraine and across the border into the Don River Basin and parts of the Volga Basin in Russia.
The forecast indicates a gradual transition from predominantly surplus conditions to deficit, with Cambodia and eastern Papua New Guinea showing deficit conditions throughout. Through January surpluses will begin to retreat from Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Papua but will persist with intensity in Southeast Asia. Moderate deficits will emerge in southern Thailand and around the Java Sea. After January severe deficits will begin to emerge in Malaysia and Indonesia and surpluses in Southeast Asia will begin to retreat.
Intense water deficits are forecast to persist in central India and western Karnataka through April 2018. In the near-term through January, deficits will continue to emerge across India’s northern half and may be exceptional in Haryana and Punjab; moderate deficits are forecast for Afghanistan and Pakistan. After January deficits will moderate except in central India and western Karnataka. Surpluses reaching exceptional severity are forecast through April in Bangladesh and Indian states to the east, as well as western Bhutan, Nepal, West Bengal, Jammu and Kashmir, Andhra Pradesh, and Sri Lanka.
Water surpluses in the Lower Yangtze are expected to become widespread and exceptional. Exceptional surpluses are also forecast for the Middle and Upper Yellow River, Qinghai, and western Tibet. Intense deficits will continue to emerge in Mongolia and Inner Mongolia, deficits in South Korea will increase, and deficits in southeastern China will moderate, except in Fujian. After January exceptional deficits will continue to emerge to form a vast stretch across much of Mongolia and Inner Mongolia. Deficits will emerge around the Bohai Sea, and surpluses in the Lower Yangtze will diminish.
The near-term forecast through January indicates several striking changes from the prior three months: a transition in the Gulf Coast from water surplus to deficit, a broad path of deficits in the South Atlantic States, and surpluses from the Upper Midwest through the Ohio River Valley into the Northeast. In the spring normal water conditions should return to the Ohio River Valley and the Northeast, surpluses will continue to emerge in the Upper Mississippi, and deficits will moderate in the Lower Mississippi, Texas, and the South Atlantic States.
Exceptional water deficits are forecast to nearly disappear in the near-term leaving primarily moderate to severe deficits across the region. Severe deficits are forecast November through January along stretches of the Euphrates River, and deficits of greater intensity are expected along Turkey’s northern coast and in southwestern and southeastern Yemen. Overall, water deficits will diminish slightly in extent and intensity from February through April.
Though intense water surpluses will persist in Central America, the extent of exceptional surpluses will diminish. Deficits will continue to emerge in pockets across northern Mexico, diminishing in Sonora but emerging with greater severity in Chihuahua. Surpluses in northern Coahuila and Nuevo Leon will begin to transition to both deficit and surplus. Moderate deficits will emerge in southern Mexico and Guatemala. After January, exceptional deficits are expected to emerge in Jalisco, Mexico, and deficits across the northern states will diminish.
In the near-term water, surpluses reaching exceptional intensity will continue to emerge in Russia’s Volga River Basin and on the Ob, Vakh, and Tom Rivers, and in Aktobe, northern Kostanay, and western Akmola Regions, Kazakhstan. Exceptional deficits will increase in Yamal, Russia. Moderate to severe deficits are expected in Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. In the spring, Volga Basin surpluses should downgrade, though remain widespread. Surpluses will persist between the Tom and Yenisei Rivers, and along the Ob and Irtysh Rivers. Severe deficits will continue to emerge in Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.
Exceptional water deficits are expected to diminish considerably, but deficits of varying severity remain in the forecast for Finland, England, Belgium, France, Portugal, Spain, and across the Mediterranean through the Balkans. Exceptional surpluses will continue to emerge in western Russia and Poland, and surpluses are also forecast Romania, Moldova, Lithuania, Belarus, Germany, Czech Republic (Czechia), Austria, northern United Kingdom, Ireland, and southern Norway. From February through April surpluses will begin to moderate somewhat and the extent of deficits will shrink.