Weak El Nino Could Affect U.S. Weather in Coming Months

October 18, 2012

Ocean temperatures may enter a weak El Nino pattern this winter, which could affect U.S. weather in coming months, government forecasters said on Thursday.

The El Nino weather pattern, which is usually associated with changes in rainfall, may lead to a wetter winter in the central and eastern Gulf coast, the National Weather Service said in its annual winter outlook.

Parts of the Mississippi Valley and eastern plains may experience less precipitation than normal this winter, the agency said. But, the agency also stressed that models show a great deal of uncertainty about the U.S. precipitation during the upcoming season.

The western half of the country is expected to have above normal temperatures through January, the outlook said.

The agency is scheduled to provide additional analysis of its outlook later today.

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