The Barbados-based Caribbean Institute for Meteorology and Hydrology says there is “significant concern”, at least until the end of May, about the continued impact of a prolonged drought period on the region.

In the May edition of its Caribbean Drought Bulletin released Thursday, the institute said that during the first three months of this year “there was a clear distinction between the wetter northern and drier southern islands of the eastern Caribbean.

“The northwest portion of the Caribbean was also very dry. There is much concern over both short and long-term drought in Belize in the coming months. There is also significant concern over impacts on large rivers and reservoirs, and groundwater resources in the southern Caribbean Islands, parts of the Guianas, Cayman Islands and Belize, at least until the end of May,” it noted.

The organisation said that over the period January to March mixed conditions were seen throughout the islands of the eastern Caribbean.

It said long-term drought situation “is of immediate concern” in west central Belize and is evolving in Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao (ABC Islands) as well as Suriname, Trinidad and the Windward Islands except, Grenada,

It has also warned Jamaica, Guyana, the Leeward Islands and Tobago of the possibility of long-term drought continuing, adding that “areas ending up in long-term drought by the end of May may experience significant reduced water levels in large reservoirs, large rivers,and groundwater.”