El Niño | Likely To Be Strong In 2014

How I See It

On May 8, 2014, scientists at the Climate Prediction Center of the National Weather Service (NWS) announced there was a 65% likelihood of a strong El Niño event this summer/fall. There is still uncertainty when and exactly how strong. Indications are that it may rival the significant El Niño of 1997. This image compares the sea height for the regions of the equatorial Pacific on the same date in 1997 and 2014. Warmer than normal sea water moves east toward South America. The warmer waters cause expansion and higher than normal sea heights along the equatorial zone. Both are markers for the onset of El Niño.

NASA JPL | Marit Jentoft-Nilsen, Robert Simmon. Michael Carlowicz

What Happened in 1997?

It was one of the strongest El Niño events observed. Extreme weather affected several continents. One of the warmest and wettest winters on record took place in North America. California and Florida were both strongly…

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