How it affects hurricane season

AUSTIN (KXAN) – The mid-April El Nino-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) forecast continues to paint a bleak picture of when our current La Niña phase will come to an end.

The official CPC/IRI forecast puts the probability of La Niña surviving through the summer (June-August) at 59% with a 50-55% chance of lasting into the fall.

CPC/IRI ENSO forecast

Normally the La Niña phase of ENSO occurs every three to five years, but we had it for winter 2020-2021 with a repeat for winter 2021-2022 and it has continued into spring.

Climate.gov succinctly describes El Niño and La Niña as the “warm and cool phases of a recurrent tropical Pacific climate pattern.”

Image: climate.gov/ENSO

La Niña and severe weather in central Texas

The ENSO phase usually has a larger impact in the Northern Hemisphere during winter, but in spring we can see more tornadoes and large hail events in central Texas in a La Niña phase.

Image: Climate.gov

La Niña and the Atlantic Hurricane Season

During hurricane season, La Niña can also mean increased tropical activity in the Atlantic

Image: Climate.gov

For us, La Niña typically means drier and warmer weather in winter. We ended the winter drier and this continued into spring bringing an increasing drought to central Texas.

Our wettest month of the year is May on average and we get our first look at the May forecast from the Climate Prediction Center on Thursday 21st April.

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