With a more powerful El Nino, we can anticipate a warmer December and snowier winter.
Forecasters are predicting a “historically strong” El Nino, which is responsible for the massive snowfall expected in December and during any potential nor’easters this winter.
On October 12, NOAA stated that there is “a 3 in 10 chance of a ‘historically strong’ event that rivals 2015-16 and 1997-98,” and that there is an 85% chance for a “strong” event between November and January. This is according to a diagnostic discussion of El Nino’s presence at the end of 2023 and into Spring 2024.
Stronger El Nino occurrences enhance the risk of El Nino-related climatic anomalies, although this does not always translate to substantial impacts locally, NOAA noted.
According to meteorologists, El Nino develops when ocean temperatures in the eastern and central Pacific Ocean are persistently higher than normal for several months. The jet stream is redirected as a result of the shift in sea temperatures.
AccuWeather’s senior forecaster and Lead Long-Range Meteorologist Paul Pastelok declared, “El Nino is upon us.” In the words of the meteorologist, “It came on strong here in late summer, and it will continue to be strong and a dominating factor going into our winter forecast.”
A warmer-than-usual winter may begin in December thanks to El Nino. Notable abnormally warm winters include those in 2015–16 and 1997–98; the 2023–24 season is forecasted to be about 3 degrees warmer than typical.
If you live in the northern United States and were hoping for a frigid December to get you in the spirit of the Christmas season, you may be disappointed this year, according to the Weather Channel. The present odds favor above-average temperatures in major cities including Minneapolis, Chicago, Boston, and New York City.
However, “an early-season nor’easter can’t be ruled out either as the ingredients for a snowstorm may come together sometime in November,” according to AccuWeather. Conditions in the Northeast are forecast to continue “higher than average,” but to approach “near average” levels by the start of the new year.
As for the rest of the Northeast, including New England, temperatures in February should be close to average and “could feature a colder East, warmer West split,” according to the Weather Channel. The Northwest should expect substantially warmer temperatures, while the Southeast may experience frigid weather that extends as far west as Louisiana and as far north as New York and Connecticut.
About 12 inches of snow fell in Boston in the previous year. The city could receive up to 44 inches of snow this year, according to forecasts. According to AccuWeather, this is still below the city’s average of roughly 49 inches.
AccuWeather advised, “get your snow shovels ready,” in light of the forecast for an average winter that will contrast sharply with the drier winter expected heading into 2023. The Farmers’ Almanac’s Winter 2024 Extended Weather Forecast included very similar projections.
The forecast states, “Winter weather is returning.” As the author puts it, “after a warm winter anomaly last year, traditional cool temperatures and snowy weather conditions will return to the contiguous United States.”