The U.S. weather forecaster on Thursday projected a 65 percent chance of El Nino conditions during the Northern Hemisphere winter and into spring, up from a 58 percent chance predicted early in November.
The Climate Prediction Center, an agency of the National Weather Service, said in a monthly report it is on watch for the El Nino weather phenomenon.
The heightened alert comes just days after the Australian Bureau of Meteorology said there is a 70 percent chance of an El Nino event arriving by February.
El Nino, a warming of Pacific sea-surface temperatures that occurs every four to 12 years, can trigger drought in some parts of the world and cause flooding in others.
Last month, the CPC slightly lowered the likelihood of El Nino occurring in the Northern Hemisphere winter to 58 percent.
(Reporting by Chris Prentice; Editing by Bernadette Baum)
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