Cyclone Gati : 2 Years Worth of Rain In 2 Days | UPSC

Cyclone Gati : 2 Years Worth Of Rain In 2 Days | UPSC


Cyclone Gati spurs locust outbreak threat in Somalia

      WHY IN NEWS:

Gati, the strongest tropical cyclone ever measured Somalia, made landfall on November 22, 2020

SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 1 : Geography : Cyclones


For PRELIMS go through the winds and pattern , Factor affecting the cyclone and do not forget the region affected.

For MAINS track the locust menace . Analyse the food security and other threats in the region . Let us dive in !


Widespread and heavy rains due to Cyclone Gati in Somalia have spurred a threat of a widespread locust outbreak in the east African country.


Cyclone Gati : 2 Years Worth of Rain In 2 Days | UPSC



  • On November 22, 2020, Cyclone Gati became the strongest storm to hit Somalia since satellite records began five decades ago.
  • The storm brought more than a year’s worth of rain to the region in two days.


  • Tropical Cyclone Gati struck the arid nation of Somalia on Sunday as the equivalent of a Category 2 hurricane with 105 mph winds
  • Gati, the strongest tropical cyclone ever recorded Somalia, made landfall on November 22, 2020.-National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

Its intensification from about 40 mph to 115 mph was “the largest 12-hour increase on record for a tropical cyclone in the Indian Ocean.

  • At one point before the landfall, Gati’s winds were measured at 115 mph.
  • It is the first recorded instance of a hurricane-strength system hitting the country.


  • According to the meteorologists, Gati strengthened rapidly because it was located in an area of warm water and low wind shear.

Ocean temperatures and wind shear, or the change in wind speed at different levels in the atmosphere, help determine strength of GATI CYCLONE

  • Although the storm slightly weakened before landfall, Gati brought exceptional amounts of rain to northern Somalia.


The cyclone has impacted Socotra, Somalia, Yemen and western Oman with heavy rain and flash flooding. 


  • Gati made landfall with maximum sustained winds of 170 kilometers (105 miles) per hour, a category 2 storm on the Saffir-Simpson scale.

The natural-color image below shows Gati before making landfall over Ras Hafun (East Africa) .

  • The image was acquired by the Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) on the Suomi NPP satellite.

Cyclone Gati : 2 Years Worth of Rain In 2 Days | UPSC



  • Local authorities report at least eight people were killed and thousands have been displaced.


From the second week of December, several waves of swarms can be expected to move south in Somalia and Ethiopia, reaching northern Kenya

  • Intensive aerial and ground control operations continue in both countries.
  • The locust outbreak of 2019 to early 2020 across several East African countries had posed a serious risk to food security and livelihoods.


  • There is a correlation between the intensification of cyclones in 2018 and 2019 and the locust outbreaks in 2020.
  • Cyclones of 2018 and 2019 facilitated origin and breeding of locusts.

Strong winds associated with tropical cyclones provide a new environment for pest breeding, development and migration.

  • Extreme weather events led by climate change, increases in temperature and rainfall over desert areas.


  • FAO has warned about the threat to southern Somalia from locust swarms in December 2020.

Desert locust infestations are expected to continue to threaten crop production and pastureland across Ethiopia and Somalia.

  • But with Gati, Somalia along with Ethiopia and Kenya may be staring at another cycle of locusts outbreaks in 2021.
  • In early to mid-2021, the acutely food insecure population is likely to rise to over 2.5 million in Somalia.
  • FAO has called for scaled up desert locust surveillance and control operations as the Somali populations are already facing multiple threats to food security.

Desert locusts, socio-economic impacts of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and a developing drought condition.

      IASbhai WINDUP: 


  • The three cyclones in 2018 and two in 2019 contributed to the 2020 locust upsurge in the Horn of Africa including Ethiopia, Somalia and Kenya

Cyclonic storm Sagar was the strongest tropical cyclone to make landfall in Somalia in recorded history before Gati.

  • It was the first named cyclone of the 2018 North Indian Ocean cyclone season.
  • Tropical Cyclone Pawan, which made landfall in Puntland State of Somalia on December 7, 2019, too, was devastating.
     SOURCES:  DownToEarth  | Cyclone Gati : 2 Years Worth of Rain In 2 Days | UPSC



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