When you look at the past several years, rain has been very hard to come by. In fact, I have personally been appalled by the lack of precipitation. Not only has this had an effect on our community here in the Brazos Valley, but throughout the entire state. Lakes are looking like creators, streams are flowing slowly, and crops are not as bountiful. However, I do have potentially great news for us in the long term.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is monitoring the ocean temperatures around the equator in the Pacific Ocean. Signals suggest that by the summer, a new El Niño could emerge. El Niño is not a storm by any means, but rather a warming of the waters in the eastern Pacific around the equator. Despite this simple sounding phenomenon, it has reaching affects around the entire globe, including us here in Texas.
Signs of an El Niño include a rise in pressure over Indonesia and trade winds in the south Pacific slowing down or moving towards the east. In turn, this allows warmer water at the surface to flow towards South America. As the water warms, there will be more moisture and heat energy in the atmosphere to enhance the formation of rainfall.
As of the current forecast, the trade winds are expected to have a very strong component towards the east, rushing in very warm water. Due to this theory, water temperatures could rise between 7-10 degrees above average, which would be compared to one of the strongest El Niño’s on record (1997-1998). If this actually shapes up, we are in for a great pattern that favors more rain by autumn.
Just know that this is not 100% guaranteed, but if this El Niño happens to emerge, it could be strong and provide a huge benefit to all of us.
Take a look up once in a while; you never know what you’ll miss.
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