May 12, 2016

Climate pendulum is swinging rapidly from El Niño to La Niña

El Niño 3.4 region
by
Andrew Freedman
,
Mashable
Sea surface temperature anomalies on May 12, 2016. Image: NOAA
Sea surface temperature anomalies on May 12, 2016. Image: NOAA

Say goodbye to El Niño, and hello to its less popular sibling, La Niña. 

Tropical Pacific Ocean waters are cooling rapidly after record warmth during much of 2015 and 2016 so far, signaling an impending shift. 

A new climate outlook released on Thursday puts the odds of a La Niña event developing in the tropical Pacific Ocean at 75 percent by the September through November period of this year. Forecasters' confidence in a developing La Niña event is high enough that the Climate Prediction Center (CPC) has issued a "La Niña watch"