Hoping (even praying) for a wet El Niño winter may not be enough to make it happen. That’s my take, based on today’s El Nino Watch from the Climate Prediction Center. Sure, the predictions are based on a discussion of the conditions being witnessed, so a consensus may or may not be reached, but it looks like I may not have to do any preemptive roof work after all.

To quote, “Synopsis: The chance of El Niño has decreased to about 65% during the Northern Hemisphere fall and early winter.” Speaking of July, the report suggested, “Most of the Niño indices decreased toward the end of the month….”

Furthermore, the report says: “Over the last month, model forecasts have slightly delayed the El Niño onset, with most models now indicating the onset during July-September, with the event continuing into early 2015 (Fig. 6). A strong El Niño is not favored in any of the ensemble averages, and slightly more models call for a weak event rather than a moderate event. At this time, the consensus of forecasters expects El Niño to emerge during August-October and to peak at weak strength during the late fall and early winter (3-month values of the Niño-3.4 index between 0.5°C and 0.9°C). The chance of El Niño has decreased to about 65% during the Northern Hemisphere fall and early winter.”

You can find the entire report and graphs here.


6 Responses to “Watching El Niño disappear before our eyes”

My inclination is take all forecasts with a grain of salt. But I hope it rains. 🙂

I’m going to continue to pray for rain. We need it badly. Soon we won’t be able to launch at our local lakes.

The real key is how the Sierras and Rockies will be affected. According to the latest forecast map, it looks like the Sierras should be above normal and maybe part of the Rockies. All is not lost although global warming just might be shifting the paradigm faster than expected.

In summary, we continue to favor the emergence of El Niño in the coming months, with the peak chance of emergence around 65% (i.e. there is a 35% chance of El Niño not occurring). ENSO forecasters do not expect a strong El Niño (we can’t eliminate the chance of one either), but we are not expecting El Niño to “fizzle.” In fact, just in the last week, we have started to see westerly wind anomalies pick up near the Date Line. Literally and figuratively, we may be witnessing the start of ENSO’s second wind.