Weekly Weather Event -Week of January 10thJanuary 14, 2022
With the winter season well underway for the Northern Hemisphere, it is virtually certain that December 2021-February 2022 will mark the fifth season in a row of La Niña conditions. Once the fifth season has been confirmed by forecasters and researchers, this will officially mark this period of cooler than average temperatures in the Pacific Ocean as a La Niña event. Five continuous seasons are needed to ensure that both the atmosphere and ocean are coupled, or influencing each other, in respect to an El Niño or La Niña event.
As to be expected from a La Niña event, the United States has experienced shifts in precipitation patterns. The south-central and southeastern U.S have experienced drier conditions than normal while the Pacific Northwest, northern California, and the Ohio Valley have been wetter. One of the most consistent outcomes of a La Niña event is the presence of more snow in the Pacific Northwest, and this year has seen some strong storms in the West.
For more insight into the technical aspects of this current La Niña event, NOAA’s climate blo has an excellent recent writeup on the El Niño Southern Oscillation.