TAIPEI–A record low number of sunshine hours have been recorded across Taiwan so far this winter, thanks to cloud and moisture brought by La Nina climate pattern and unusually strong Pacific high pressure systems, the Central Weather Bureau (CWB) said yesterday. According to data collected between Dec. 1 and Jan. 18, Taipei, Taichung and Kaohsiung all recorded their lowest number of sunshine hours in history, the bureau said.
Taipei registered a mere 33.1 hours of sunshine over the 49-day period, way below its historic average of 138.2 hours for the same period, the bureau said. The central city of Taichung and Kaohsiung in the south also saw their sunshine hours decrease dramatically, with Taichung reporting 205.4 hours and Kaohsiung 167.4 hours, down by 153.7 hours and 169.2 hours, respectively, the bureau’s data showed. The extremely low sunshine hours were a result of La Nina bringing more moisture and rain, said Cheng Ming-tien, director of the CWB’s Weather Forecast Center. Cheng said another reason was the unusually strong Pacific high pressure systems this winter, which also brought moisture to Taiwan. The low number of sunshine hours have had an impact on agriculture, the director said, adding, however, that it is less likely such low figures will be recorded again in the near future.