Weak El Nino Forecast in Pacific by End August – NOAA Source: PlanetArk
USA: August 26, 2004
WASHINGTON – A weak El Nino, a weather pattern that distorts wind and rainfall patterns worldwide, is expected to develop in the central Pacific by the end of this month, U.S. government forecasters said.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration “expects weak El Nino conditions to develop by the end of August,” Conrad Lautenbacher, the NOAA administrator, said in a statement. “Presently, NOAA does not anticipate significant impacts from this potential El Nino in the United States.”
However, NOAA said it was unclear what impact, if any, the developing El Nino could have on ocean temperatures along the west coast of South America.
The agency said it will update its El Nino outlook on Sept. 9.
El Nino, Spanish for “boy child,” is a periodic, abnormal warming of water in the Pacific Ocean, which can last up to 18 months.
The last one, from May 2002 through March 2003, caused record rains in Europe and Australia’s worst drought in a century. In the United States, it aggravated drought in the Plains states and unleashed heavy storms in the south and east.
A severe El Nino in 1997/98 triggered severe drought in Australia, the Philippines and Indonesia and rampant flooding in Chile, Ecuador and Bolivia. The weather pattern was blamed for the deaths of hundreds of people.