We are still at the beginning of the El Niño event. This year it was determined to have arrived on July 4 – which is unusually early, according to Rasmus Benestad, climatologist at the Meteorological Institute.
– It looks like it will be a strong El Niño, and says that forecasts indicate it will reach the level of the strong El Niños of 2016 and 1998.
He believes the season forecast has hit well so far.
– The development, the pattern and the way it is structured is somewhat similar to both 2016 and 1998, so there is a high probability that this one will also be strong, explains Benestad, who interprets it as El Niño. It usually starts in August and peaks in the New Year.
— but Benestad says it can last longer, and points out that previous La Niñas lasted three years.
In Australia, scientists are now paying close attention to the frequency of El Niño and La Niña events.
In a new study, published NatureResearchers have created a reconstruction of variations in the Pacific Ocean up to 1200 AD.
– This is a figure we don’t have yet, and it might be a bit different than expected, says researcher Bjorn Samset at Cicero du Togbladet.
– Occurs less frequently
According to Associate Professor Leah Svendsen of the University of Bergen’s Bjergnes Center and Department of Geophysics, the researchers looked at pressure differences in the Pacific Ocean when they produced the reconstruction.
– There is a big question mark over whether the variations are natural or the result of climate change. The conclusion reached so far is that there are natural variations. At the same time, one sees a change after the Industrial Revolution in the New Reconstruction. The frequency of El Niño and La Niña seems to have become less and less frequent, Svendsen tells Talkblade.
– What does that mean?
– This means the changes are less frequent, and the chance of multi-year La Niñas or El Niños increases. Both of those affect the weather around the world, Svendsen responds, and points out that in Australia, among others, they suffered a lot of flooding during La Niña.
Other studies of future La Niña or El Niños have concluded the opposite of this study in Australia, he says.
Georgie Falster at ARC Center of Excellence for Climate ExtremesOne of the researchers behind the study said the research shows that one of the main drivers of the events is changing as the transition slows between La Nina and El Niño events.
– This means that we may see more of these multi-year La Niña or El Niño events in the future because the atmospheric flow over the Pacific transitions more slowly between La Niña and El Niño phases, Falster says.
– not good
Researcher Rasmus Benestad is not optimistic that these phenomena will last much longer.
– This is not so good for us, because both El Nino and La Nina affect weather systems, where there are rains and droughts, so if they are long or intense, it will affect half the world, says Benestad.
– He added that it remains to be seen how long this El Niño will last and what effects it will have.
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