What will happen – time
Gabriel Imperial

El Niño is about to end. La Niña phenomenon is about to arrive. In short: an end to the strong warming of surface waters in half the world, but cooling is on the way. But what does all this mean? The answer was provided by scientists from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration NOAA, who provided some data on the phenomenon and explained what will happen in the coming years. But let's start from the basics. El Niño is the name given by fishermen in Ecuador and Peru to the periodic rise in water temperature that brings with it the disappearance of fish. It literally means “baby,” and it was quickly studied by meteorologists and climatologists who understood that it was a global and more complex phenomenon. Because the El Niño phenomenon, which experts call the “Enso El Niño Southern Oscillation,” affects much of the Earth’s climate and causes drought in some regions – such as Asia and Africa – heavy rainfall in others and high temperatures around the world. In the current scenario, El Niño – a natural phenomenon – is adding to human-induced climate change by pushing temperatures over the past two years to unprecedented levels.

When the cold ends.  Weather, the truth about temperatures

But now that it's almost finished, what will happen? The eastern Pacific will cool due to the rise of cold currents, the waters will be filled with many nutrients, fish will return and La Niña will begin. As Paolo Vertuani rewrote in Il Corriere della Sera, the good news is that the hot spell has come to an end. According to estimates, the La Niña phenomenon will develop between April and June, and in the Northern Hemisphere – our hemisphere – we will feel its effects next fall and winter. The bad news, though, is that the overall warming of our planet will continue for the rest of 2024. But not all experts are yet sure that El Niño is over: the Australian and Indian meteorological offices have already declared the end of the world. This phenomenon, NOAA more cautious. He estimated its end with an 85% probability, also adding that a “neutral transitional state” will be established between April and June, with a 60% probability that between June and August we will move into a La Niña phase.

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We were talking about climate change. It also suffered a period of return of the El Niño phenomenon and declined. “From an average of about 5-7 years, it has now dropped to 3-4 years,” writes Vertuanni. The increasingly rapid transition between El Niño and La Niña can then be linked to climate perturbations. Data that worries experts and others. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization: “Cycles have recently become much faster and reduce the possibility of adapting to changes.” Since last January, for example, West Africa has been “breaking temperature records due to the El Niño phenomenon.” Figures that lead Joyce Kimutai, of Imperial College London, to believe that “drought in southern Africa appears to be mainly caused by El Niño.” The local UN representative shares the same view, and has issued a disturbing appeal for assistance after the “devastating effects” of monsoon rains exacerbated by the El Niño phenomenon, which has now displaced nearly 100,000 people.


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