Grateful for the heavy precipitation in the northern half of the state this winter, it’s now time to trash your hope chest (or maybe not?) NOAA is dishing up nothing but mixed reviews for the coming winter, leading to that old axiom, “Hope for the best, but expect the worst.”
Latest El Niño report is not convincing. It says a Niña Watch is in effect as sea temperatures are going bad as it relates to SoCal precipitation (at least as those conditions tend to offer us some of the wettest winters. Pulling from the latest report:
“Collectively, these atmospheric and oceanic anomalies reflect a transition from El Niño to ENSO-neutral conditions,” which most of us could figure without looking at the actual sea charts from around the world.
But if you’re wondering if the change is only somewhere down the road, here’s what the experts reported: “Many models favor La Niña by the Northern Hemisphere fall. However, most dynamical models indicate La Niña onset as soon as the Northern Hemisphere summer, which is slightly favored by the forecaster consensus.”
The problem with the “forecasting process” is it only relies on data as far back as 1982 (as I read the report). That’s why it comes off as wishy washy, saying: “In contrast, many statistical models [for La Nina] favor a later onset time with about half indicating the persistence of ENSOneutral conditions through the winter. At this time, the forecasters are leaning toward a weak or borderline moderate La Niña if an event were to form.”
But then, the notices end with this: “Overall, ENSO-neutral conditions are present and La Niña is favored to develop during the Northern Hemisphere summer 2016, with about a 75% chance of La Niña during the fall and winter 2016-17.”
I try not to be discouraged, but from this, I’m forecasting more dead lawns and long dry ramps.