“The month of February 2023 in mainland Portugal was classified as normal in terms of air temperature and extremely dry in terms of precipitation“, states the IPMA climate bulletin.
The bulletin referring to February underlines that, last month, the total monthly precipitation, 10.7 litres per square metre, "was much lower than the average value", corresponding to only 11% of the normal value recorded between 1971 and 2000.
The IPMA states that, considering the last 35 years, only in nine years were the monthly precipitation values in February higher than the average value.
The same document also adds that there was a significant decrease in the percentage of water in the soil in February, with practically the entire territory having values below 60%, and some places on the central coast and Baixo Alentejo have percentage values of water in the soil less than 20%.
At the end of February, the IPMA also reveals, there was an increase in areas in mild drought and moderate drought in the South region, with emphasis on the districts of Setúbal and Beja, with many places in moderate drought, while in the North and Center there was a decrease in the areas in the rainfall classes.
"On February 28, 15% of the territory was in mild drought and 13% in moderate drought", reads the bulletin, which gives an account of the average air temperature, which was 9.94 degrees centigrade, and very close to the normal value recorded between 1971 and 2000.
According to the IPMA, the maximum air temperature was higher than the normal value, being the twelfth highest since 1931, and the minimum air temperature was lower than the normal value, registering the sixth lowest since 2000.
#InfoIPMA: Fevereiro de 2023 classificou-se em Portugal Continental como normal na temperatura e extremamente seco na precipitação. Conheça algunas das conclusões do Boletim Climatológico recentemente publicado https://t.co/Wg3TociQMJ#boletimclimatológico #fevereiro2023 pic.twitter.com/PxtKbcZoZb— IPMA (@ipma_pt) March 8, 2023
“During the month of February, maximum air temperature values were almost always above the monthly average, as well as minimum air temperature values almost always lower than normal, with emphasis on the periods from 02 to 07 and from 23 to 28 with values much lower than the monthly average”, indicates the same document.
Although February was classified as normal in terms of temperature, the IPMA points out that mainland Portugal was, last month, “often under the influence of a polar air mass”, in addition to being also affected by depressions and the passage of a cold frontal surface.