The current episode of the La Niña weather phenomenon, which has caused particularly severe droughts in Africa, is expected to have an unprecedented length this century and last until at least the end of the year, the UN said on Wednesday, August. 31.
According to a new Info-Nino/Nina bulletin published by the organization World Meteorological Organization (WMO), it will be the first La Niña episode this century in the Northern Hemisphere (or three consecutive summers in the Southern Hemisphere). An agency of the United Nations.
«A La Niña episode lasting three consecutive years is truly unusual“, underlines OMM’s Secretary General Finn Petteri Thales in the bulletin. If confirmed, it would be the third time since 1950 that the phenomenon has been observed in three consecutive winters, according to the WMO.
According to the bulletin, the current La Niña episode, which began in September 2020, is expected to continue for the next six months: the probability of this forecast rises to 70% in the months from September to November, and then gradually decreases to 55%. During the period from December to February 2023. The La Niña phenomenon – the cooling equivalent of El Niño – causes a portion of the surface water in the Pacific to cool, influencing the rainfall cycle and climate in some regions of the world.
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According to the WMO, trade winds intensified between mid-July and mid-August 2022, altering temperatures and precipitation and exacerbating droughts and floods in many parts of the world. “La Niña is characterized by worsening drought in the Horn of Africa and South America, as well as above-average rainfall in Southeast Asia and Australia.», indicates the peteri thallus.
«The latest information from the bulletin unfortunately confirms local weather forecasts that the catastrophic drought affecting the Horn of Africa will affect millions of people.“, he adds.
The Horn of Africa, which is increasingly vulnerable to famine due to drought, is bracing for a fifth consecutive failed monsoon season. El Niño and La Niña phenomena are determinants of the planet’s climate system, but they are not the only ones. Cold weather caused by La Niña phenomenonTemporarily slows the rise in global temperature, but it does not stop or reverse the warming trend in the long run.», Petteri Thales warned.
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