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Record El-Nino/Bastardi/this winter:

Message from Mike coastal CT

Sam you seem to know far more about El-Nino than I do, so I’m sure you might be right.

From my viewpoint (more from a climatological USA standpoint) …a few things seem likely;

First, I did see in NOAA’s November 16th El Nino update….Sea-surface temperatures (SSTs) in the Pacific’s Niño 3.4 region, (between 90°W and 160°E longitude and 5° north/south latitude), that weekly departure of SST from average in this region hit +3.0°C (5.4°F) over the past week – and the El Niño event of 2015 has just set a record for the warmest waters EVER observed in the equatorial Pacific over a 1-week period. This exceeds the previous 1-week record warmth in the equatorial Pacific of 2.8°C above average set during the week of November 26, 1997; accurate El Niño records extend back to 1950. So no doubt now…this is an all-time record event.

However, I also think, like all things in nature, the limits are quickly approaching. I just can’t see how this El Nino can get much stronger than it is now, there is just not enough warm water in the Western Pacific to move into the eastern Pacific – lol. So I think this El Nino is peaking (or will VERY soon)….and will begin a slow (but steady) decline in the next 3 to 4 months.

That said, I doubt over the next three months, we in much of the central and Northern USA will see anything but at least slightly warmer than normal temps (by central/northern I mean places above 35 latitude or so). Also, while El-Nino typically brings cooler/wetter weather to the southern/subtropical tier (Deserts Southwest/Gulf States/lower Atlantic) I think anomalies will be well with the typical standard deviation we see in these areas (low/high temps within 5 to 8 F or normal). Of course, there will be an isolated night here and there (for a few hours) that we might see a bit deeper cold - but overall (as I said back in August) I think that anything like the cold we saw last Feb/and winter 2013/2014 is a million to 1 shot. As far as Joe Bastadi and the pro-winter media…they will forecast anything and everything that points to a colder than normal winter - no matter what common sense (and science) points to.

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