La Niña by July?

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:42 PM GMT on June 08, 2010

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El Niño rapidly dissipated in May, and we are now very close to entering into a La Niña event, according to the latest sea surface temperature (SST) data over the tropical Eastern Pacific. The weekly SST readings in the area 5°N - 5°S, 120°W - 170°W, also called the "Niña 3.4 region", fell to 0.4°C below average on June 7, a full 1°C drop in just one and a half months. This puts us very close to the -0.5°C threshold needed to be considered a La Niña event, according to NOAA's latest El Niño Discussion. The Australian Bureau of Meteorology showed conditions in the Niña 3.4 region were not quite that cool--0.2°C below average for the week ending June 6. Nevertheless, the speed of the collapse of El Niño makes it likely that a La Niña event is on its way this summer, and NOAA's Climate Prediction Center has issued a La Niña watch. Ten of the 23 El Niño models (updated as of May 19) are predicting La Niña conditions for hurricane season. However, as NOAA's Climate Prediction Center commented in their June 3 advisory, a number of the more reliable models are now calling for La Niña to develop this summer. They comment, "there is an increasing confidence in these colder model forecasts, which is supported by recent observations that show cooling trends in the Pacific Ocean and signs of coupling with the atmospheric circulation." Historically, about 35 - 40% of El Niño events are followed by a La Niña within the same year.


Figure 1. Atlantic named storm, hurricane, and intense hurricane activity since the active hurricane period we are in began in 1995. Both La Niña and neutral years have shown similar levels of Atlantic hurricane activity, though the figures are somewhat skewed by the record-setting year of 2005. Background photo: Hurricane Dean, taken from the Space Shuttle.

It is interesting to note that the last time we had a strong El Niño event, in 1998, El Niño collapsed dramatically in May, and a strong La Niña event developed by hurricane season. History appears to be repeating itself, and I predict the emergence of La Niña by July. Since La Niña events tend to bring lower amounts of wind shear to the tropical Atlantic, we can expect a much more active Atlantic hurricane season than usual in 2010. Since 2010 is similar to 1998 in the behavior of the El Niño/La Niña cycle, it is possible that this year's hurricane season could resemble the 1998 Atlantic hurricane season. That year had about 40% above-average activity, with 14 named storms, 10 hurricanes, and 3 intense hurricanes. The season was relatively late-starting, with only one named storm occurring before August 20. Once the season got going, six named storms affected the Gulf of Mexico, including two hurricanes, Earl and Georges, that passed directly over the location of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.


Figure 2. Tracks of all named storms for the 1998 Atlantic hurricane season.


Figure 3. Typical regional weather anomalies observed during June - August when La Niña conditions are present. The Caribbean tends to be cloudier and wetter than average, but there is typically little change to temperature and precipitations patterns over North America. Image credit: NOAA Climate Prediction Center.

Oil spill update
Light east, southeast, or south winds of 5 - 15 knots will blow today through Saturday, according to the latest marine forecast from NOAA. These winds will keep oil near the beaches of Alabama, Mississippi, and the extreme western Florida Panhandle, according to the latest trajectory forecasts from NOAA and the State of Louisiana. The latest ocean current forecasts from the NOAA HYCOM model are not predicting eastward-moving ocean currents along the Florida Panhandle coast this week, and it is unlikely that surface oil will affect areas of Florida east of Fort Walton Beach. Long range surface wind forecasts from the GFS model for the period 8 - 14 days from now show a southeasterly wind regime, which would prevent any further progress of the oil eastwards along the Florida Panhandle, and would tend to bring significant amounts of oil back to the shores of eastern Louisiana next week. If you spot oil, send in your report to http://www.gulfcoastspill.com/, whose mission is to help the Gulf Coast recovery by creating a daily record of the oil spill.


Figure 4. The oil spill on June 6, 2010 at 8:32pm EDT, as seen by Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) imagery from the Italian Cosmo-SkyMed (COnstellation of small Satellites for Mediterranean basin Observation) satellite. A large region of oil was a few miles offshore of Pensacola, Florida. Image credit: University of Miami Center for Southeastern Tropical Advanced Remote Sensing, Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science.

Oil spill resources
My post, What a hurricane would do the Deepwater Horizon oil spill
NOAA's fact sheet on Hurricanes and the Oil Spill
My post on the Southwest Florida "Forbidden Zone" where surface oil will rarely go
My post on what oil might do to a hurricane
Oil trajectory forecasts from NOAA
Gulf Oil Blog from the UGA Department of Marine Sciences
Oil Spill Academic Task Force
University of South Florida Ocean Circulation Group oil spill forecasts
Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) imagery from the University of Miami

"Hurricane Haven" airing again this afternoon
The tropical Atlantic is quiet right now, with no models predicting tropical cyclone development over the next seven days. I'll talk about all this nothingness on my live Internet radio show, "Hurricane Haven", at 4pm EDT today. Listeners will be able to call in and ask questions. The call in number is 415-983-2634, or you can post a question in the comments area on Shaun Tanner's blog. Some topics I'll cover on the show:

1) What's going on in the tropics right now--is this typical?
2) New advancements in hurricane science presented at this month's AMS Conference on Hurricanes and Tropical Meteorology last month

Today's show, which will probably be just 1/2 hour, will be at http://www.wunderground.com/wxradio/wubroadcast.h tml. The show will be recorded and stored as a podcast, as last week's show was.

I may take a break from blogging Wednesday, as I've got some catching up to do on other duties.

Jeff Masters

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3292. dsenecal2009
2:22 PM GMT on August 20, 2010
Callsign DGUG2 (name unknown)

Last reported at 2010-Aug-20 06:00 UTC. Time now 2010-Aug-20 14:20 UTC.
Position N 1318', W 02624'.

Wind from 040 at 14 knots

Waves 1.5 meters (5 feet), 4 second period

Barometer 1008.4 mb
Air temperature 27.5 C
Visibility: greater than 10.8 NM
Dewpoint 24.1 C
Water temperature 29.0 C

Notes date/time lat lon naut miles run avg knots wind from wind knots barom visib wave height air temp dew point water temp
2010-Aug-20 06:00 N 1318' W 02624' 390 16.2 040 14 1008.4 10.8 1.5 27.5 24.1 29.0
Member Since: September 25, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 119
3290. hcubed
4:15 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Quoting BradentonBrew:
What is this JFV you all speak of? Is this some kind of weather system or term?


Yes, it's a weather term for a persistant low system, usually centered over SFLA, and is characterized by bad spelling.

Most models are quick to pick up on it's early signs, and the experts tend to ignore the ill winds that originate from it.
Member Since: May 18, 2007 Posts: 289 Comments: 1639
3289. aspectre
2:21 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
P451 "BP ought to do 2 things:
1) Lower their gas prices, by even a dollar, in the states affected.
2) Hire those who have lost their jobs due to the disaster (fisherman) to help clean up the mess, and, hire them at the wages they made in their lost jobs.
"

1) Encouraging folks to waste evermore fuel through low prices is what caused this mess in the first place. The price of fuel is also why fish farmers are complaining while sports and trawler fishermen are keeping their mouths shut.
2) Can't put them to work faster than ya can train them. An untrained cleanup worker is worse than onshore crude oil.
Member Since: August 21, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 4860
3288. catastropheadjuster
2:13 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Quoting WeatherLoverinMiami:
Sorry but off topic but thats a nice Avatar


WeatherLoverinMiami:I have boxerss to you dog looks like my sugarbutt.
Sheri
Member Since: August 24, 2006 Posts: 21 Comments: 3665
3287. illinichaser
2:10 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Hello everyone, first time poster, long time reader. Curious to know if anyone has a guess to what the max water temps in the GOM and Carribean may pan out to be come round late aug/ early sept this season?
June 9th, 2010:

June 9th, 2005:


If I were to guestimate difference in temperate of 2010 versus 2005 within the GOM and Carribean it seems to be a full degree celsius warmer than 2005! Though wind shear may restrict the amount of storms that form this season, the first one that gets into the carribean or GOM with no shear will be killer cane. The amount of fuel availible for sustaining major hurricanes is going to be bottomless. I hope everyone in cane country understands the horrid potential this season.
3286. BradentonBrew
2:06 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Quoting DestinJeff:
Perhaps one of the analysts among us can generate a report showing how ENSO cycles effect JFV handle activity.

This being a neutral ENSO, headed possibly into La Nina, we have seen quite a few different manifestations of the Three-Letter-Blogger (no offense, Ike).

I suspect this has something to do with trade winds and a weak A/B High, but then what do I know?

Since we didn't have internet outside of the current active MDO cycle that began in 1995, data is limited to provide analog years for comparison.


Thanks Jeff. I get it now. It's a who and not a what. ("Wondering if the JFV is going to show up today"...seemed like some sort of covection or weather element that I should look for.) My apologies to all and carry on.
Member Since: June 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 11
3284. WeatherLoverinMiami
1:58 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Sorry but off topic but thats a nice Avatar
Member Since: January 25, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 62
3282. WeatherLoverinMiami
1:56 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Quoting Funkadelic:
Good morning, Congrats to the hawks fans out there, they deserved lord Stanly's cup.

Does anyone know when that TUTT is expected to lift out of the Atlantic?
Member Since: January 25, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 62
3281. DaytonaBeachWatcher
1:55 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Quoting DestinJeff:
Perhaps one of the analysts among us can generate a report showing how ENSO cycles effect JFV handle activity.

This being a neutral ENSO, headed possibly into La Nina, we have seen quite a few different manifestations of the Three-Letter-Blogger (no offense, Ike).

I suspect this has something to do with trade winds and a weak A/B High, but then what do I know?

Since we didn't have internet outside of the current active MDO cycle that began in 1995, data is limited to provide analog years for comparison.

ROFLMAO
Member Since: June 29, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 1136
3279. CyclonicVoyage
1:53 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Quoting Funkadelic:
Good morning, Congrats to the hawks fans out there, they deserved lord Stanly's cup.

Does anyone know when that TUTT is expected to lift out of the Atlantic?


Looks like about 10 days according to the 06ZGFS. Seems to weaken a bit in 5 days then re-amplify through day 10.

Member Since: January 30, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 3259
3277. FLWeatherFreak91
1:50 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Quoting SpFox:
That huge tropical wave over Africa produced a massive dust storm yesterday.



Wow. Neat observation. You can also see that the dust being blown up caused some fair weather cumulus to form on the leading edge of the sandstorm. Cool stuff.
Member Since: December 1, 2006 Posts: 2 Comments: 3619
3276. CyclonicVoyage
1:49 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Also visible in the GFS 200mb upper air analysis.

Member Since: January 30, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 3259
3274. Patrap
1:45 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Uptown, New Orleans, Louisiana (PWS)
Updated: 1 min 29 sec ago
Mostly Cloudy

85.2 F

Mostly Cloudy
Humidity: 80%

Dew Point: 78 F

Wind: Calm
Wind Gust: 5.8 mph
Pressure: 30.09 in (Rising)

Heat Index: 97 F

Visibility: 6.0 miles
UV: 1 out of 16
Pollen: 4.50 out of 12
Pollen Forecast new!
Clouds:
Few 2000 ft
Scattered Clouds 13000 ft
Mostly Cloudy 25000 ft
(Above Ground Level)
Elevation: 20 ft
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 423 Comments: 127803
3273. Chicklit
1:44 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Would that wind be due to La Nina?
Member Since: July 11, 2006 Posts: 14 Comments: 11267
3272. BradentonBrew
1:42 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Quoting IKE:


Hmmm...here we go again?


Sorry if this has already been addressed. Stop in once a day or so and there are 30 pages to go through. :(
Member Since: June 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 11
3271. CyclonicVoyage
1:42 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Quoting DestinJeff:


thanks .. I am finally seeing these TUTTS we here so much about


It's similar to a trough, wind shift line, just in the upper atmosphere. The upper level anticyclone to the south of the TUTT is tightening the gradient, evident by the closely spaced isobars to the south of the TUTT.
Member Since: January 30, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 3259
3270. Chicklit
1:40 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Quoting Patrap:


Here in Se. Louisiana we cherish our Air Conditioners as much as our Boats..

Well.,,,almost

It hasn't been worthwhile to run mine because the coil is out. Been relying on a lovely seabreeze but think it's time to bite the bullet. I traded the boat for a motorcycle. Wouldn't mind trading the mc back for a boat but the bike's got about 60,000 miles on it now and I'm not up to rowing. ;)
Member Since: July 11, 2006 Posts: 14 Comments: 11267
3268. 850Realtor
1:38 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Weird...I was just reading comments and my screen turned totally white/greyish white. Couldn't find cursor, couldn't do anything. Had to shut down and start over. Anyone know what that means?
Member Since: September 14, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 283
3267. Orcasystems
1:37 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Quoting Floodman:


How would you do that? You can't ban by IP; everyone's IP changes periodically; can't ban by email address, you can always get another...


People seem to think if they complain loud enough, that you can do the impossible. They don't understand that it just can't be done.

There are so many ways around it, that you can't block them all.
Member Since: October 1, 2007 Posts: 81 Comments: 26511
3266. DaytonaBeachWatcher
1:36 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Actually when we arent in the heat of the season, i find him quite entertaining. And the people who engage him are even more so. When it is in the heat of the season, lets face it, he is the most entertaining ever if you can read his posts amongst all the agnst going on.
Member Since: June 29, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 1136
3265. IKE
1:33 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
(CNN) -- Oil from the massive spill in the Gulf has moved into the inland waterway along coastal Alabama, prompting the U.S. Coast Guard to close Perdido Pass, the main water access route for fishermen and boaters in the popular resort town of Orange Beach.

BP and the government have tried to protect the pass for weeks with thousands of feet of boom, but thick waves of oil have seeped into the pass and down the waterway, coating the marshy shoreline as it moves through.

People in the community are frustrated, watching the massive oil spill ruin, not only the once pristine beaches and turquoise water of the Gulf, but their livelihood, as well.

Rest of the story is here.
Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
3264. Floodman
1:33 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Quoting Tazmanian:
i see JFV is not geting it yet i dony think he nos what the word banned means


if i was the Admin i would have blck him by now too where he dos not make any more names


How would you do that? You can't ban by IP; everyone's IP changes periodically; can't ban by email address, you can always get another...
Member Since: August 2, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 9922
3263. CyclonicVoyage
1:33 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Quoting DestinJeff:


like this:



Yes, if you look at Adrian's image (Hurricane23) The return flow around the south side of the TUTT is where the shear lies, lower shear north of the axis.
Member Since: January 30, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 3259
3262. DaytonaBeachWatcher
1:32 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Quoting IKE:


Hmmm...here we go again?


I guess you could say that he is indeed a weather system, lmao.
Member Since: June 29, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 1136
3260. Orcasystems
1:30 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:


This is like watching a fresh Coffee pot startling to peculate on the stove. Its seems to take forever to start... but once it does....
Member Since: October 1, 2007 Posts: 81 Comments: 26511
3259. hurricane23
1:29 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Member Since: May 14, 2006 Posts: 8 Comments: 13674
3258. 850Realtor
1:29 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Quoting IKE:


Hmmm...here we go again?


ROFLMAO! It's only 8:27 am :)
Member Since: September 14, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 283
3256. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
1:28 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 170 Comments: 53446
3255. CyclonicVoyage
1:27 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Quoting CyclonicVoyage:


Just to the north of your blue line where you see the isobar bulges crest to the SW.


Your blue line is the pressure gradient winds between the TUTT and the Anti-Cyclone to the South.
Member Since: January 30, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 3259
3254. Orcasystems
1:27 PM GMT on June 10, 2010



AOI

AOI

AOI

AOI
Member Since: October 1, 2007 Posts: 81 Comments: 26511
3253. IKE
1:23 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Quoting BradentonBrew:
What is this JFV you all speak of? Is this some kind of weather system or term?


Hmmm...here we go again?
Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
3252. scott39
1:22 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Quoting hurricane23:


Upper conditions are not conducive for development down there due to the TUTT in the area. Leaning towards epac development.
thanks, i thought when you see convection fire around a wave, that the tutt wasnt effecting it as much?
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 6747
3251. CyclonicVoyage
1:22 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Quoting DestinJeff:
Does the blue line roughly represent the TUTT axis? I am trying to figure out to see these things myself ..



Just to the north of your blue line where you see the isobar bulges crest to the SW.
Member Since: January 30, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 3259
3250. BradentonBrew
1:22 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
What is this JFV you all speak of? Is this some kind of weather system or term?
Member Since: June 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 11
3249. CyclonicVoyage
1:21 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Quoting hurricane23:
Nothing eminent across the tropical atl as most of the caribbean is hostile this morning. Took a pan at the new ECMWF which still carries a wave into the eastern caribbean but has a (tutt) entrenched in the vicinity producing strong westerlies. Think it will be another 3-4 weeks before we can begin to look out across the eastern tropical atl.

adrian


Was looking at the GFS and that TUTT looks to be around till at least the 20th with quickly improving conditions thereafter.

Member Since: January 30, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 3259
3248. hurricane23
1:19 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Quoting scott39:
Can anyone else see this on the current Sattelite, or am i just way off?


Upper conditions are not conducive for development down there due to the TUTT in the area. Leaning towards epac development.
Member Since: May 14, 2006 Posts: 8 Comments: 13674
3247. indianrivguy
1:19 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
3225. Patrap

Thanks Pat!

3228. SpFox

Wow.. awesome image, thanks!
Member Since: September 23, 2006 Posts: 1 Comments: 2535
3245. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
1:16 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Quoting eye:
It is a slow start for a suposedly hyperactive season.....since everyone was loving comparing this season to 2005, we are already behind.....
we got a 174 days to go lots can happen in a 174 days
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 170 Comments: 53446
3244. smarterthanyou
1:16 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Quoting DestinJeff:
Here is something a little birdie gave me to share with you all ... ok, so a big birdie. Whatever. I can't say his name, but it starts with a C and ends with a ycloneOz.



a href="" target="_blank">Link


bad
move
3243. scott39
1:16 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Quoting ryang:
looks like life to me
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 6747
3242. ryang
1:15 PM GMT on June 10, 2010
Member Since: August 25, 2006 Posts: 329 Comments: 12427

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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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