Our planet goes through many changes throughout the years. Many of these changes can be tracked by the patterns in which the Earth follows. However, there are still natural phenomena that occur unsuspecting. El Niño and La Niña are changes within the temperatures in sea surface. Specifically, from the Pacific Ocean. These changes in sea surface temperatures causes weather anomalies to occur all around us. Normally, these shifts in temperature may be tracked and last for a certain duration of time. Nonetheless, these natural phenomena play a big role in the weather changes that happen on our planet.
El Niño Brings Warm Surface Water
When El Niño is going on, surface water in the Pacific Ocean around the equator is abnormally warm. This change in temperature in the water brings a number of effects. Due to the warm surface water, conditions in the south begin to become wetter. Whereas, northern areas begin becoming dryer. These weather conditions have large effects on the amount of water within the air. Situations where you see the north becoming warmer than the south usually happen around this time due to the amount of water in the air and the amount of precipitation.
La Niña Brings Cold Surface Water
As you would expect, La Niña brings the opposite of El Niño; Cold surface water. This cold surface water effects the Earth completely differently. The transverse effect can be assumed between the two. With cold surface waters, comes warmer and dryer weather to the south. Whereas, you’ll be seeing high precipitation and cold in the northern United States. It is important to know that not all cases of El Niño and La Niña are going to be the same. Weather patterns can differ between each occurrence of the two. So, professionals are always on hand to declare what type of weather situation we are in. Each pattern usually lasts about 9 – 12 months and you can check what is currently happening by going to National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration website!