La Niña may develop in last quarter of 2021
MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) said La Niña, or the cooling phase of the El Niño Southern Oscillation (Enso), may emerge in the coming months and persist until early next year.
In an alert issued on Monday, Pagasa said latest forecasts by most climate models and expert judgment show that there was a 70 to 80 percent chance that La Niña may form in the last quarter of 2021 and prevail until the first quarter of 2022.
This climate pattern is characterized by unusually cool ocean surface temperatures in the central and eastern equatorial Pacific. It is the cooler phase of Enso, a natural phenomenon that involves fluctuating ocean temperatures and atmospheric changes.
Similar to its opposite, El Niño, which is the warming phase, La Niña can affect weather systems around the world.
Weather forecasters have not said if the upcoming La Niña will be a weak or strong phenomenon, but this climate pattern is often associated with more rainfall.
Pagasa said several areas in the country may expect above normal rainfall conditions in the coming months, based on rainfall forecasts.
“This can be attributed to the expected stronger easterlies, enhanced northeast monsoon and tropical cyclone occurrences,” the weather service said.
Weather specialists warned residents in the eastern part of the country, which normally receives more rain during the last quarter of the year, to prepare for floods and rain-induced landslides.
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