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South Texas winter likely to be warmer, drier than normal

NOAA predicts third consecutive 'La Niña' Winter ahead
Posted at 1:10 PM, Oct 21, 2022
and last updated 2022-10-21 21:54:43-04

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) Climate Prediction Center (CPC) has released the latest outlook for the upcoming winter months.

Scientists expect a climate pattern known as a La Niña to be in place this winter, impacting global weather patterns. Across the southern U.S., drier and warmer conditions are expected, including right here in the Coastal Bend.

More on 'La Niña'
La Niña is the "cool" phase of a teleconnection, or climate pattern, called El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO). La Niña is characterized by unusually cold ocean temperatures near the Equatorial in the Pacific Ocean. The ocean temperature affects the atmosphere and influences the position of the jet stream, the upper-level "highway" of wind that storm systems travel along.

Impacts in the Coastal Bend
This influences the likelihood of seeing certain weather patterns around the world. La Niña can be associated with highly variable temperatures and arctic cold fronts. This was the case with The Big Texas Freeze in February 2021. In fact, the 2020-21 winter was the first of this trio of La Niña winters. The last time we saw three consecutive winters in a La Niña phase was back in 1950. Overall, the likelihood of seeing warmer, drier weather is higher— but it doesn't mean we won't see cold or rainy bouts of weather.

Stay update to date with the latest local forecast from the KRIS 6 Weather Team here.

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