Bob Berwyn (@bberwyn) July 19, 2012
From the Summit County Citizens Voice (Bob Berwyn):
A classic El Niño may be developing across the eastern Pacific, with warmer-than-average water temperatures starting to spread westward from the coast of South America, according to NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center.
For the month of June, the pattern of sea surface temperatures overall remained in a neutral phase, but with growing positive (warmer than average) equatorial Pacific sea surface temperature anomalies, NOAA has issued an El Niño watch, reflecting a likely emergence of of El Niño in the late summer or fall.
Ocean-wide, the warming off the coast of South America is consistent with patterns associated with the development of previous El Niños, including a weakening of low-level trade winds across the east-central equatorial Pacific. Those winds, blowing east to west, normally push the warmer waters to the west. Another sign is the weakening of the persistent pattern of enhanced convection near Papua New Guinea.