The La Niña conditions that have contributed to the ongoing drought in the southwest United States is likely to continue into a third year, according to the World Meteorological Organization (WMO).
As the Los Angeles Times notes, the prediction is somewhat more dire than that issued recently by the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The WMO predicted a 52% chance of a continued La Niña; the NOAA predicted the likelihood of a La Niña at 59%.
The Times noted:
If La Niña persists into the fall and winter, it would be only the third time since 1950 that the climate pattern has continued for three consecutive winters in the Northern Hemisphere, the U.N. World Meteorological Organization said last week.
La Niña is the cooler sibling of El Niño, which, along with a neutral phase, constitutes the El Niño-Southern Oscillation. La Niña is a year-to-year or multiyear phenomenon characterized by cool sea surface temperatures in the equatorial central and eastern Pacific Ocean, coupled with altered global atmospheric circulation.
In addition to the historic U.S. drought and the deadly drought in the Horn of Africa, drought in southern South America and above-average rainfall in Southeast Asia and Australia, New Zealand and surrounding islands have been blamed on La Niña.
The opposite condition, called El Niño, is associated with flooding in California and rain in the Southwest. As Breitbart News noted in 2017, a strong El Niño contributed to the Golden State experiencing two consecutive wet winters in 2017-8.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the recent e-book, Neither Free nor Fair: The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election. His recent book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.