Want a warmer, drier winter here in Southwest Florida?
Well, you’re in luck – La Niña is coming for the holidays and that’s exactly what she’s bringing with her.
La Niña, the counterpart to the infamous El Niño, is a climate phenomenon that influences weather throughout North America.
According to scientists, La Niña officially arrived on November 10th and has begun influencing the weather patterns all throughout the United States. Marked by sea surface temperatures that are cooler than average, La Niña changes the Pacific jet stream that has a big impact on weather and climate not just in North America, but across the globe.
NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center predicts that La Niña will result in warmer and drier conditions throughout much of the southern U.S., including Florida. Our neighbors to the north will largely receive a wetter winter, and those in the northern Great Plains will likely see a colder winter than average.
There is a fear that a prolonged La Niña pattern this winter could lead to more drought-like conditions in the southern U.S., which would be concerning for a region that has already experienced a dry fall.
It’s fair to say that many families who own second homes down here in Southwest Florida actually prefer warm, dry winters, so they can get away from the frigid frozen landscape that is the north during the winter months. For them, La Niña is good news.
Of course, this year’s La Niña is somewhat weak by average standards, and is only expected to last a few months. The latest La Niña, back in 2011-2012, was stronger. And the El Niño we just had was one of the strongest of its kind on record, resulting in an above-average hurricane season this year (although, thankfully, Southwest Florida was spared).
If you’re coming back to Florida for the winter season, you’ll probably enjoy the weather. Whether you do or don’t, you’ll have La Niña to thank!