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January Outlook Issued from the Climate Prediction Center

19 Dec 2016, 4:08 pm

The Climate Prediction Center (CPC) recently issued its outlook for this upcoming January. It calls for warmer than normal temperatures in much of the Southern U.S. and in the Northeast. Drier than average conditions are expected in the South as well. Cooler and wetter than normal weather is expected in most the Northwest for the month overall.

The CPC says that the long range models are in good agreement and that La Nina conditions are still being observed in the Pacific Ocean. La Nina is expected to continue through the month, although it is not as strong as observed in the past. This may result in less than robust seasonal impacts. La Nina was discussed and forecast previously by the Climate Prediction Center in the November and Fall/Winter long range forecasts.

La Nina occurs when the waters of the Pacific Ocean show a general trend of cooling, the opposite of an El Nino. During La Nina periods, the Jet Stream is less active in the Southern U.S. This usually leads to less storms systems and below average precipitation. Cooler than normal weather typically occurs across the northern tier of the country and occasionally wetter periods as well. The trends of an El Nino or La Nina often take some time to establish, so it is likely to see its effects felt in the coming months.

The CPC is expecting the month to start warmer in the east with cooler than average temperatures in the Pacific Northwest. The Southeast and Upper Midwest is forecast to see drier than average conditions for the beginning of January.

For WeatherNation: Meteorologist Mace Michaels

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