Sat, Jan 21, 2012 - Page 2 News List

Weather bureau forecasts cold, wet lunar holiday

Staff Writer, with CNA

A cold and wet Lunar New Year holiday is expected across the country as a strong cold front brings moisture from China, the Central Weather Bureau said yesterday.

Temperatures started to edge down yesterday afternoon, the bureau said, adding that they would plummet on Lunar New Year’s Eve, which falls tomorrow. The cold spell would continue until Friday, causing lows of about 10oC in the coastal and open areas north of Miaoli County.

The approaching weather system is likely to bring rainfall to all parts of the nation during the holiday, except for the plains in the southwest, which would be cloudy, the bureau said.

According to the bureau’s forecast, the mercury will hover around 11oC to 14oC in the north, 12oC to 15oC in central areas, 13oC to 17oC in the south and 13oC to 19oC in the east during the Lunar New Year.

In addition, foggy weather is very likely in the central and southern parts of the country and in Kinmen and Matsu in the early hours of today, the bureau said.

In related news, the bureau said that the number of sunshine hours so far this winter had been a record-low nationwide.

Data collected between Dec. 1 and Wednesday in Taipei, Greater Taichung and Greater Kaohsiung all showed record-low hours of sunshine since the bureau started collecting data.

Taipei registered a mere 33.1 hours of sunshine over the 49-day period, far below its historic average of 138.2 hours, the bureau said.

Greater Taichung and Greater Kaohsiung also saw their number of sunshine hours decrease dramatically, with Taichung reporting 205.4 hours and Kaohsiung 167.4 hours, down by 153.7 hours and 169.2 hours respectively, data showed.

The extremely low number of sunshine hours was a result of La Nina bringing more moisture and rain, said Cheng Ming-dean (鄭明典), the director of the bureau’s Weather Forecast Center.

Cheng said another reason was the unusually strong Pacific high pressure system this winter, which also brought moisture to the country.

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