Winter forecast 16/17: colder!


Winter 2015/2016 was short, (too) mild and relatively wet after it finally started to snow in January. A second El Niño in a row led to a worldwide increase in average temperature. The good news is that the winter of 2016/2017 won't be an El Niño winter. And according to the American weather institute NOAA there's a chance that the temperatures will be lower than average (worldwide). The reason is a high probability that we'll have to deal with a La Niña. "The chance of La Niña increases during the late summer or early fall.”

Models are calculating a La Niña

Lower temperatures worldwide

During an El Niño year it gets warmer than average worldwide, but the opposite happens during a La Niña year: it is colder than average. (Source). It's an average of tenths of a degree, but that can be the difference between a snow line at low altitude or rain up to high altitude in the middle of winter. Especially in the Alps and Canadian Rockies this can be the difference between a mild winter and a cold winter. Check out the maps below.

Higher temperatures during El Niño

Lower temperatures during la Niña

It is not written in stone yet that it will be a La Niña winter, but it is sure that El Niño won't be that strong. The temperature will drop around the world and maybe even a bit more if the calculations of the NOAA are right. Nature just gave its first signal for winter 2016-2017!

Check out more about La Niña and El Niño here.


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