El Nino weather phenomenon could bring 'hottest day world has ever seen' this year
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A weather phenomenon known as El Niño could be set to bring the hottest day that the world has ever seen this year.
Some of you might already know about El Niño, whilst some of you might think we’re just talking about former Liverpool, Chelsea, and Atletico de Madrid striker, Fernando Torres.
So, El Niño comes around every few years, with sea levels rising typically in the central-eastern Pacific Ocean.
Once those sea temperatures cross a certain threshold, El Niño is declared.
This year, ocean temperatures have been on the rise since March, which seems to insinuate that we’re looking at an El Niño year.
What’s more, the opposite of El Niño – La Niña – ended in February, according to scientists.
The scientists have been watching the water temperatures in the eastern Pacific by South America and near to the equator, whilst looking into wind patterns to determine whether El Niño is coming.
The Washington Post reports that current climate models suggest that there is a 62 percent chance of El Niño by July, and a 90 percent chance of it developing by the end of the year.
So, why is this important and why are the scientists concerned?
Because the weather around the world is affected by other things happening elsewhere, and El Niño is definitely something that has an effect, from mudslides and strong rainfall in California to droughts in Australia, south-east Asia, and Indonesia.
Climate change also has a part to play in all this, making things more extreme and harder to predict.
The scientists also believe that it will become a more frequent phenomenon as the climate crisis worsens and greenhouse gas emissions continue to rise radically.
El Niño also raises global temperatures, which is also not helped by climate change.
This means that El Niño could bring with it higher global temperatures, including even perhaps the highest temperatures ever recorded on earth.
Robert Rohde from Berkeley Earth told the Washington Post: “If El Niño develops, it is likely to moderately boost global average temperatures during the rest of 2023 and into 2024.”
Strong El Niño years in 2015 and 2016 led to the highest ever year on record in 2016.
Netweather forecaster, Nick Finnis, told the Daily Express: “It could push the world past a new average temperature record with help from climate change induced global warming.”
The current highest temperature ever recorded was 56.7C, recorded in Death Valley, California, back in 2013.
Last year saw temperatures over 40C in the UK, the hottest temperatures ever recorded here.
Finnis continued: "The UK may not see any dramatic temperature rises this year, but El Niño could result in higher temperatures next year, more particularly in summer."
He added that ‘south-east Asia, India, Australia, parts of the Amazon and southern Africa’ are the places likely to see the most extreme heat.
Michael McPhaden, a senior scientists at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, told the WP: “We’re likely going to see the same kind of sequence play out,
“We’re going to see again this big ramp-up in global mean surface temperatures.”