Actueel weer
Zondag 30 september
Do 1 okt 33°regenachtig
Za 2 okt 33°regenachtig
Zo 3 okt 33°regenachtig
Actuele waterstand
Zondag 30 september
WeersvoorspellingPeak flow level (cm)
Minimum 660
Mean 663
Maximum 666
Weather and Climate

Weather and Climate

Weather and climate patterns have a large impact on daily life and the livelihoods of communities in West Africa. Rainfall is telling indicator if it will be a wet or dry year, with a high or low production of natural resources. This Section provides background and up-to-date information, in particular about rainfall in West Africa.

Within a long day travel from the Sahara desert edge in Mauritania or Mali to the wooded savannas and humid forests in Guinea the average rainfall increases from 100 mm annually or less in the north (latitude 17 ºN) to about 2000 mm in the deep south (latitude 10 ºN). This translates in a rapid change of landscape and associated land cover and land use. The weather in West Africa is characterised by a distinct seasonal timing and huge variation in annual rainfall. Periods of severe droughts in the 1970s and 1980s are part of the collective  memory.

Weather and climate are monitored and forecasted in Mali and Guinea already for long time by respectively Meteo Mali (DNM, Direction Nationale de la Météorologie) and the DNM in Guinea. In addition to the daily monitoring of weather stations, satellite imagery today is an important means to forecast and monitor weather and weather changes. In this Observatory we focus on rainfall data; for other meteo data we refer to the national directories, or World Meteorological Organization (WMO).

In this Section you find information on recent and forecasted rainfall in West Africa, in particular in the Upper Niger Basin. Short background information on rainfall  and rainfall patterns in the Sahel is given, in addition to historic data of rainfall in the Upper Niger Basin and Inner Niger Delta. This Section is completed with a short overview of the current knowledge on climate change in the West Africa region, relevant to the Mali and Guinea.