June 28, 2012 in Washington Voices

After extremely soggy June, drier days expected across region

 

As of early Tuesday, more rain was falling across the Inland Northwest.

This month will be one of the wettest in recorded history for many areas across the region. The airport should have a June total around 3 inches, nearly three times normal.

But as always, eventually we cycle from the extreme wet to the dry. High pressure will finally build in the region, giving us more sunshine and drier conditions.

Our summer weather is often affected by the presence of an El Niño or La Niña in the south-central Pacific Ocean.

The latest sea-surface temperature data indicates that ocean temperatures in the Pacific Ocean are warming up. Readings near the South American coastline have climbed to several degrees above normal, meaning an El Niño is emerging. There have been a number of years when we have a wet June, then July, August and even September are often drier than normal when we get a new El Niño.

During La Niña years, when sea-surface temperatures are cooler than normal, the wet weather continued into the summer after a soggy June. The Inland Empire was under the influence of La Niña, the cooler than normal sea-surface temperature event, from late 2011 and into this year.

According to the World Meteorological Organization, there is a slight chance of El Niño-type weather conditions developing between July and September as this phenomenon strengthens a bit. These scientists also said that it is unlikely we will see a re-emergence of La Niña later this year.


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