NOAA's Latest Report Says Winter Is Coming... But Not Really
For the past few weeks here on the east coast of the United States it has felt like, when Mother Nature was done with summer, she decided "to hell with autumn" and skipped right into winter. It may not be great news for the planet, but the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) recently shared its annual Winter Weather Outlook for the United States which shows that the weather wonkiness will continue and that winter will be on the warmer side this year.
"Warmer-than-normal conditions are anticipated across much of the northern and western U.S., with the greatest likelihood in Alaska and from the Pacific Northwest to the Northern Plains," the NOAA wrote in its report, adding that "the Southeast, Tennessee Valley, Ohio Valley and Mid-Atlantic all have equal chances for below-, near- or above-average temperatures."
Before you burn your parka and rejoice in the streets, keep reading... Because it's not all clear skies and rainbows through February. In the same report, the NOAA says that there is a 70-75% chance that El Niño will show up to dinner uninvited and ruin the party. "We expect El Nino to be in place in late fall to early winter," said NOAA's Climate Prediction Center deputy director, Mike Halpert. "The Boy" is expected to be weak this time around, but experts think his presence will bring above-average temperatures while drenching the South and drying out parts of the North.
Image credit: NOAA
As for snowfall, the NOAA report does not include those predictions because, as the administration points out, snow forecasts are usually made a week in advance. But don't think that a warmer winter means we get to skip the fluffy stuff altogether. "Even during a warmer-than-average winter, periods of cold temperatures and snowfall are still likely to occur," writes the NOAA. The next NOAA report is scheduled for November 15, so we have a couple weeks to see if anything has changed. Check out the video below for an overview of this month's outlook.