The main purpose of this ongoing blog will be to track planetary extreme or record temperatures related to climate change. Any reports I see of ETs will be listed below the main topic of the day. I’ll refer to extreme or record temperatures as ETs (not extraterrestrials).😉
Main Topic: Could La Nina Expand The U.S. Western Drought Towards The East?
Dear Diary. It’s been many years since seasonal weather patterns aligned such that a significant drought occurred east of the Rockies, mainly in the U.S. breadbasket area. Such patterns usually are associated with strong La Niña ocean temperature regimes, the last happening in 2012. Here is what we see in November 2021, indicating that a healthy, cool La Niña is occurring in central Pacific waters:
So, how would a La Niña dry out most of the United States? La Niñas have been associated by what meteorologists call a “phased,” or single jet stream pattern in which a southern part of the jet doesn’t break off from the main stream very often during the cold part of the season.
When the jet splits over the United States some strong, wet storms can be generated from the southern part of the jet. This has been happening frequently since 2012, especially during El Niño winters:
If we combine the effects of a moderate to strong La Niña with climate change, we could end up with a dry, mild winter indeed. Going out through the end of November we basically have a dry, mild pattern for most of the U.S. except the Pacific Northwest. The Northeast will be caught in an icebox, though:
Here is the current Drought Monitor map:
We will keep a close eye on this map to see if drought spreads in the Plains going into Spring 2022.
Another big factor that is a prelude to drought is lack of snow cover. The last several winters there has been ample snow cover across the Missouri River Valley and Upper Midwest such that spring crops germinated easily from moist soil. We do note a distinct lack of snow during November, the traditional month from fall going towards winter:
Many climatologists, including yours truly, fear that we will experience a devastating drought and heatwave that will detrimentally strike the nation’s and planet’s breadbasket soon. For the past decade we have been fortunate. During 2021 the worst heat struck the Pacific Northwest, with drought confined to the West outside of major growing areas except in California. Will our luck continue into 2022? Stay tuned.
Here are some recently reported “ET’s:”
Here is more climate and weather news from Monday:
(As usual, this will be a fluid post in which more information gets added during the day as it crosses my radar, crediting all who have put it on-line. Items will be archived on this site for posterity. In most instances click on the pictures of each tweet to see each article. The most noteworthy items will be listed first.)
Now here are some of today’s articles and notes on the horrid COVID-19 pandemic:
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Guy Walton “The Climate Guy”