Mexico, Central America, & the Caribbean: Water deficits forecast for Jamaica; surpluses in Coahuila MX & Nicaragua

17 December 2018

The 12-month forecast ending August 2019 indicates deficits of varying intensity peppered throughout Mexico’s southern states from the Gulf of Mexico to the Gulf of Tehuantepec, and primarily moderate deficits along the northern Gulf and in the northern Yucatan Peninsula. Moderate to severe deficits are forecast for the central Baja Peninsula, and moderate deficits from southern Chihuahua into central Durango. Intense surpluses are forecast for northern Coahuila and along Sinaloa’s northern coast on the Gulf of California, with some small pockets of lesser intensity in the center of the country.

In Central America, severe surpluses are forecast for Nicaragua reaching across its borders into Honduras and Costa Rica. Intense surpluses are also forecast east of Guatemala City, Guatemala. Moderate deficits are expected in western Honduras, and severe to extreme deficits in western Panama. In the Caribbean, some moderate deficits are expected in Haiti and pockets of Cuba.

The 3-month maps (below) show the evolving conditions in more detail.

A complex distribution of water anomalies is forecast in the region over the next six months. Through February, intense surpluses will persist in northern Coahuila, Mexico and along Sinaloa’s northern coast on the Gulf of California. Surpluses are expected to retreat from southwestern Chihuahua but re-emerge in a small pocket in the center of the state. Surpluses will persist in eastern Durango and along a diagonal from southern Durango through Mexico City, broken by a pocket of exceptional deficits in southern Puebla, and continuing into northern Oaxaca. Moderate surpluses are forecast from Aguascalientes to Puerto Vallarta.

Moderate to severe deficits are expected in the northern Yucatan Peninsula and deficits of varying intensity in scattered small pockets throughout the southern states. In the north, deficits will be moderate to severe along the Rio Grande in Chihuahua.

In Central America, surpluses will intensify in Nicaragua, becoming exceptional in the north and into Honduras. Surpluses are also forecast for western Costa Rica and southeastern Guatemala into western El Salvador. Primarily moderate deficits are expected in southern Belize, central Guatemala, and western Honduras. Extreme to exceptional deficits are forecast for western Panama. In the Caribbean, deficits of similar intensity are expected in Jamaica, and of lesser intensity in Haiti and Dominican Republic.

From March through May, severe to exceptional deficits will emerge in southern Baja and in Nayarit, Mexico. Surpluses will downgrade in northern Coahuila and shrink somewhat along the aforementioned diagonal the center of the country. Moderate deficits will increase in southern Chihuahua and northern Durango, primarily moderate deficits will persist in northern Yucatan, and small, isolated pockets of deficit remain in the forecast for southern Mexico. Surpluses will persist in Nicaragua, southern Honduras, and western Costa Rica. Deficits will retreat from Panama and the Caribbean.

The forecast for the final three months – June through August – indicates moderate to severe deficits in Baja and in western and southern Mexico. Some moderate deficits are also forecast for northern Central America.

(It should be noted that forecast skill declines with longer lead times.)

There are numerous regions around the world where country borders are contested. ISciences depicts country boundaries on these maps solely to provide some geographic context. The boundaries are nominal, not legal, descriptions of each entity. The use of these boundaries does not imply any judgement on the legal status of any territory, or any endorsement or acceptance of disputed boundaries on the part of ISciences or our data providers.

Subscribe to our monthly Water Watch List

Search blog categories

Search blog tags


Many analyses reported in ISciences-authored blog posts are based on data generated by the ISciences Water Security Indicator Model (WSIM). Other sources, if used, are referenced in footnotes accompanying individual posts. WSIM is a validated capability that produces monthly reports on current and forecast global freshwater surpluses and deficits with lead times of 1-9 months at 0.5°x0.5° resolution. This capability has been in continuous operation since April 2011 and has proven to provide reliable forecasts of emerging water security concerns in that time-frame. WSIM has the ability to assess the impacts of water anomalies on people, agriculture, and electricity generation. Detailed data, customized visualizations, and reports are available for purchase.

For more information contact

Copyright 2019 ISCIENCES, L.L.C. Global Water Monitor & Forecast Watch List is the property of ISCIENCES, L.L.C. It is protected by U.S. copyright laws and may not be reproduced in any way without the written permission of ISCIENCES, L.L.C. The user assumes the entire risk related to its use of information on ISCIENCES, L.L.C. Web pages, including information derived from Water Security Indicators Model (WSIM). This information may include forecasts, projections and other predictive statements that represent ISCIENCES, L.L.C.’s assumptions and expectations in light of currently available information and using the highest professional standards. Actual results may differ from those projected. Consequently, no guarantee is presented or implied as to the accuracy of specific forecasts, projections or predictive statements contained herein. ISCIENCES, L.L.C. provides such information "as is," and disclaims any and all warranties, whether express or implied, including (without limitation) any implied warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose. In no event will ISCIENCES, L.L.C. be liable to you or to any third party for any direct, indirect, incidental, consequential, special or exemplary damages or lost profit resulting from any use or misuse of this data.