El Ninos are a weather and climate phenomenon that meteorologists and climatologists are finally beginning to understand. Warmer water in the Pacific shifts wind patterns, which shifts storm tracks, which shifts rainfall inundating some places while leaving others in drought. The current El Nino has the potential to break the record for intensity and should last into 2016. The key driver is increasing water temperatures. Frequently, an El Nino would arise from more equatorial heating, but this El Nino is also happening in the presence of a new phenomenon (the Pacific Blob, an enormous warm water patch in higher latitudes) and general global climate change. The upsets in patterns are significant enough that;
“If this lines up to its potential, this thing can bring a lot of floods, mudslides and mayhem,” – NASA Climatologist
Whether this is heading to a new normal or is just a big blip, the phenomenon will affect weather throughout the world, not just in the Pacific.
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