El Nino to have substantial effect on UK and world weather

  • Getty Images

The El Nino weather pattern has shown up in the Pacific Ocean for the first time since 2010 and it could have a huge effect on UK weather this year. If it is as bad as scientists say it could mean that Britain is hit with more frequent storms and blizzards as well as flooding.

The El Nino phenomenon occurs as sea surface temperatures rise in the tropical regions of the Pacific Ocean. This temperature jump adversely affects tropical regions causing drought and soaring temperatures across Africa, Asia and Australia while South America typically gets a large increase in rainfall.

Research by scientists suggest that the pattern could have "substantial" effects in 2015 around the world given how early it has appeared. David Jones of the Bureau of Meteorology said "There's always a little bit of doubt when it comes to intensity forecasts, but across the models as a whole we'd suggest that this will be quite a substantial El Nino event."

There is a huge cost incurred to the agriculture industry around the world whenever a strong El Nino occurs. 1997 was the biggest one in recent years and it is estimated that it cost upwards of £1.8 billion in crop failure and damage.

One possible positive outcomes of a strong El Nino is that California could be in for more rainfall which is much needed to relieve a long-standing drought. Acting director of the Climate Prediction Centre Mike Halpert said "If they get too much rain, I think they'd rather have that situation rather than another year of drought. Sometimes you have to pick your poison."

United Kingdom - Excite Network Copyright ©1995 - 2022