It is this time. Winter is here and Christmas is coming. Christmas comes sooner and sooner every year. We have a warming equatorial Pacific, which suggests El Nino is developing. What will the Winter of 2018-2019 be like? Since we had La Nina last winter and a developing El Nino. Here are El Nino in which the previous winter was La Nina.
I will also look at the ocean temperature as they are factors besides El Nino, to narrow it down. They are Tripole Index for the Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation (TPI IPO), Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO), Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO), Northeast Pacific Warm Pool (NEPWP), Equatorial Indian Ocean (EIOI), Roaring Forties (R40I), and Quasi-Biennial Oscillation (QBO). The rest that are not linked, please click on Climate Indices. Not all El Nino winters are the same.
Here is the chart of analogs.
|1876-1877||1||1||1||1||1||1||6||No QBO Data|
|1899-1900||1||1||1||1||1||5||No QBO Data|
|1904-1905||1||1||2||No QBO Data|
|1911-1912||1||1||1||3||No QBO Data|
|1918-1919||1||1||1||1||4||No QBO Data|
|1925-1926||1||1||1||1||4||No QBO Data|
|1939-1940||1||1||1||1||4||No QBO Data|
I narrowed it down.
To further it, I narrow down even further.
I will use this as the analog winter forecast. Let’s look at the upper air pattern at the 500 millibar level or 18,000 feet. All the maps are from 20th Century Reanalysis Monthly Composites.
There is ridging over Northeast Canada and Greenland. That is a negative North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO). A negative NAO is more favorable for cold winters. Some of the coldest winters have occurred due to negative NAO as cold air from the Arctic region is shunted southward. There is troughing over Gulf Of Alaska and Far East Russia, which are positive East Pacific Oscillation (EPO) and West Pacific Oscillation (WPO). They are the North Pacific equivalent of NAO. There have been freezes when NAO is positive while EPO and WPO are negative, which is ridging over Alaska and Far East Russia. December 1983 and February 1989 freeze occurred due to negative EPO despite positive NAO.
Most of Russia, Central Asia, Arctic, and Alaska are cold. Same goes with Eastern US and Texas. This suggests this winter could be a cold one. Some of the coldest winters on record occurred in those analog years of 1972-1973 and 2009-2010. It is most warm over Northeastern Canada, Greenland, Korea, Japan, North Africa, and Southern Europe. It is no surprise that Northeastern Canada and Greenland are warm as there is ridging over the area.
The air is cold at 5,000 feet over Russia, Central Asia, Arctic, and Alaska. It is also cold mainly over Texas. The reason I am including this is if is freezing cold above the surface, it increases the chance for snow in the winter. One can have freezing cold at the surface, but warm above ground. That leads to freezing rain or sleet. For snow to form, the upper atmosphere needs to be cold. Snowfall occurs if the surface is not cold because the atmosphere is freezing. It is above that counts. Often when it snows, it is not really that cold.
It looks most wettest in Southeastern US, Southwest, and West Coast. It is also wet in Southern China, Korea, and Japan. It is also wet in Northern India, Nepal, Spain and Portugal. Southeast Texas looks to see about average rainfall.
How were winters like in these analog years?
I cannot find any weather records for Texas that winter. England and Wales had their wettest winter on record.
One of the warmest winters on record for Southeast Texas. It is warm throughout the US.
Houston had three 1 inch or higher snowfall on January 11, February 9-10, and February 17-18. It is Houston’s snowiest winter on record since 1895 when 20 inches of snow fell on February 14-15, 1895. New York City records the least amount of snow in winter on record of 2.80 inches. The winter is one of the coldest on record for Southeast Texas.
The world is gripped by an extremely strong El Nino. Western US had record rainfall, while Indonesia has a severe drought. It is one of Texas’s wettest winter on record.
Freezing rain on January 16-17, 2007. It is part of the much larger North American Ice Storm.
Houston records earliest 1 inch snowfall on December 4, 2009. Second snowfall on February 23, 2010. It is one of the coldest winter on record for Southeast Texas.
Does this mean 2018-2019 winter will be record cold like in 1972-1973 or 2009-2010 or warm like 1951-1952? Does this mean we will see a freezing cold or warm winter? Does this mean we will see many snowfall this winter? Not necessarily. It can go either way.
I think this winter could be a cold winter. I would not be surprised to hear of a major cold blast this coming winter or snow falls again. I could see major winter storms happening.