17 August 2016
Based on the information available on 17 August, OPIDIN predicts that the flood in 2016 will be extremely high. It will certainly be higher than the last 10 years and most likely become the highest flood in the last 40 years. However, the prediction of the flood level can still change depending on the rainfall in the Upper Niger basin during the coming weeks.
The water level in Mopti was already high early August, but had further increased more than a meter since then to reach the extremely high level of 513 cm on 16 August. The water level reached on 16 August has never been so high on this date in recent years. One has to go back to 1969 to have a year with a similar high water level in Mopti on 16 August (when it was 522 cm). The water level in Mopti is at present already higher than the highest flood level in 1984 (when a peak of 440 cm was reached on 14 October), in 1987 (491 cm) and in 1993 (498 cm). OPIDIN predicts that the peak of the flood will be 2 m higher, and the area being inundated 2.5 times larger, than in those dry years.
The rainy season in the Upper Niger Basin started well this year with relatively much rain in July, in the Upper Niger as well as in the Upper Bani. The rainfall in the first ten days of August was also higher than what is normal in this time of the year. The weather models forecast for coming fortnight again a rainfall above average. For this reason, OPIDIN predicts that the water level will show a relatively fast increase during at least the coming fortnight. When these rainfall forecasts appear to be correct, the peak will be higher than the five highest floods since the Great Drought in the 1980s (1994, 1999, 2003, 2007 and 2010).