Be aware: El Niño will arrive soon

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With a probability of 80 percent, El Niño phenomenon will impact the planet in the next three months

Be aware: El Niño will arrive soon

Everything seems to indicate that one of the long-term consequences of climate change is approaching: El Niño Phenomenon, or at least this is indicated by several studies carried out by experts from the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) of the UN and the International Center for the Investigation of the Phenomenon of the Child (CIIFEN).

Leer en español: ¡Alerta! El fenómeno del Niño llegará pronto

The time of droughts and fires will return to Earth in February 2019, with a probability of 80%, although not as intensely as in 2015-2016. In this period, the phenomenon "caused droughts, floods and the laundering of corals in various regions of the world", said Maxx Dilley, director of the Office of Climate Prediction at WMO, in statements published by El Espectador.

So far this year, according to the WMO, long-term warming has been maintained and the average temperature of the globe has been the fourth highest for which data are available. In addition, the last 20 warmer years took place during the last 22 years, with the last four being the hottest ones.

"Climate change influences both the traditional dynamics of El Niño and La Niña episodes and their consequences. The beginning of 2018 was characterized by a weak episode of La Niña, but its cooling effect was not enough to reduce the general trend to warming, so everything points to this year will be one of the warmest of record", explained the WMO Secretary General, Petteri Taalas.

For its part, CIIFEN published the report of October 2018, in which it states that the increase in temperature in the Tropical Pacific continues, with the exception of the ocean off the coasts of Peru and Chile, where the waters had values that go from normal to slightly below normal.

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"Below the surface, along the equatorial Pacific, there is an extensive area of warmer water than normal, which since the second half of October, reached values of up to +4 degrees Celsius above normal, being located very close of the surface near South America", claims the report.

The study adds that "most predictive models continue to signal the formation of a new El Niño event by the end of this year; however, despite the warming of tropical Pacific waters, the atmosphere still presents conditions close to normal”.

How much could it cost to assume it?

El Niño Phenomenon would not only cause economic but also natural effects, which would generate instability in the environment, the energy sector, and agriculture. For example, thermometers will rise throughout the Asia-Pacific region, Europe, North America, Africa, and much of the coastal area of South America.

"In many of these regions, but not in all of them, temperatures were also above normal during the period from May to July 2018. In much of North America, Europe, North Africa, East Asia and Middle East temperatures were between 1 and 3 ° C above normal", says the WMO in the report.

As for the economic, the phenomenon would directly affect people’s budget, due to the increase in the consumption of electricity and food, to name a few cases. In Colombia, for example, although the phenomenon will not be very strong, according to scientists, the expenses to mitigate the phenomenon would reach 50 billion pesos, just over 15 million dollars.

Meanwhile, in Chile they are preparing to receive temperatures of up to 40 degrees Celsius, so they are attentive to fires, a fear that grows after the losses of 400 million dollars left in 2017.


LatinAmerican Post | Jorge Hernández
Translated from “¡Alerta! El fenómeno del Niño llegará pronto”