FILE PHOTO: Australia weighs creation of disaster relief force as floods hit southeast
State Emergency Service (SES) personnel prepare to deploy as floodwaters submerge residential areas following heavy rains in the Windsor suburb of Sydney, Australia. Photo: Reuters/LOREN ELLIOTT
environment

Shift from El Nino to La Nina portends rains in Asia, dryness in Americas

16 Comments
By Naveen Thukral and Julie Ingwersen

After a strong El Nino, global weather is poised to transition to La Nina in the second half of 2024, a pattern typically bringing higher precipitation to Australia, Southeast Asia and India and drier weather to grain and oilseed producing regions of the Americas, meteorologists and agricultural analysts say.

While it is too early predict its intensity or impact on crops, meteorologists said, a shift towards a mild occurrence of La Nina, when surface ocean waters cool off the tropical west coast of South America, is looming.

"The vast majority of weather models are pointing towards a weak La Nina in the second half of the year or towards the last quarter. One out of maybe 25 weather models is showing a strong La Nina," said Chris Hyde, a meteorologist at U.S.-based Maxar.

Last year's El Nino, which followed three La Nina years, saw hot and dry weather in Asia and heavier rains in parts of the Americas that boosted farm output prospects in Argentina and the southern U.S. Plains.

India, the world's biggest rice supplier, restricted exports of the staple following a poor monsoon, while wheat output in No. 2 exporter Australia took a hit. Palm oil plantations and rice farms in Southeast Asia received less than normal rains.

La Nina could reverse the situation.

"Hypothetically, La Nina is obviously very good for Aussie crops, but it really depends on when the rain falls or doesn't fall," said Ole Houe, director of advisory services at agriculture brokerage IKON Commodities in Sydney. "Rain needs to fall prior to planting so there is good subsoil moisture or regularly during the growing season."

In rice and palm oil-producing Southeast Asian countries, wet weather could boost yields, analysts said, while a normal Indian monsoon would boost production and farm incomes.

"Maybe for southern India there could be a little bit of lingering dryness but for the vast majority of the country - the centre and the north in particular - slightly above normal rains," Maxar's Hyde said.

U.S. climatologists predict La Nina's arrival in late summer or early fall.

"As we get into the growing season, our precipitation across the Corn Belt is primarily thunderstorm-driven," said Iowa state climatologist Justin Glisan. "If La Nina kicks in late September, early October, that would be beneficial."

La Nina's onset in July-September could cause a dry autumn in the Corn Belt, benefiting U.S. farmers by speeding the harvest, although it could also lower water on Midwest rivers, hampering barge movement, and reduce grazing pastures.

"The expectations are in some cases opposite of what you would see in an El Nino," said Mark Brusberg, chief meteorologist at the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

© Thomson Reuters 2024.

©2024 GPlusMedia Inc.


16 Comments
Login to comment

The denial of the climate crisis is stupid and suicidal. Our knowledge of physics and system theory tells us that in the wake of the inputs inserted by humans the climate system has become nonlinear and unstable. This system is full of malignant positive feedback loops that push it away from equilibrium. There are no stabilizing mechanisms whatsoever that can keep the climate system in equilibrium. But there is no need to be an expert: The rapid rise in temperature and humidity is visible to the naked eye. The catastrophic loss of our planet and the ultimate extermination of humanity are very near. There may still be a remedy: Getting out from energizing ourselves from carbon, and moving on to a new era of energizing ourselves from the sun's radiation and from heavy nuclei. That is easy to do, and should have been done a long time ago. However, there are powerful social forces that fight vehemently against this simple and obvious cure and against the attempt to salvage the planet and the human race. These enemies of the planet claim that moving to modern transportation based on electricity will ruin our society. These devils do not explain how can the usage of efficient, high performance and enjoyable electric cars ruin our society? And what society will remain when the temperature rises to hundreds of degrees Celsius and all the oceans boil and become steam?

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

The denial of the climate crisis is stupid and suicidal etc.

You always copy and paste that wall of text on any article related to climate without talking about the actual contents of the article. The wall does seem to have doubled in length though. Boiling oceans and Earth turning into Venus aside, any thoughts on La Niña and possible impacts on global agriculture?

5 ( +5 / -0 )

A research article published by Colin Goldblatt and Andrew J. Watson in 2012 studies the runaway greenhouse. In the introduction chapter they write as follows:

"the physics of the runaway greenhouse is rather different to ‘ordinary’ water vapour feedback. There exist certain limits that set the maximum amount of outgoing thermal (longwave) radiation that can be emitted from a moist atmosphere. In the ordinary regime in which the Earth resides at present, an increase in surface temperature causes the planet to emit more radiative energy to space, which cools the surface and maintains energy balance. However, as a limit on the emission of thermal radiation is approached, the surface and lower atmosphere may warm, but no more radiation can escape the upper atmosphere to space. This is the runaway greenhouse: surface temperature will increase rapidly, finally reaching equilibrium again only when the surface temperature reaches around 1400 K and emits radiation in the near-infrared, where water vapour is not a good greenhouse gas. Along the way, the entire ocean evaporates."

What is the meaning of "Along the way" here? Does it refer to the time interval between reaching the limit referred to above until the point where the surface temperature reaches around 1400 K, or does it refer to the time interval between the present until the time when limit is reached? Obviously, the oceans will boil in the time interval before the limit is reached, much before the surface temperature reaches around 1400 K.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

A physical system does not behave according to our subjective wishful thinking. It behaves according to objective laws of physics. If we want to prevent the system from reaching an undesirable state, then this cannot be accomplished by cursing, swearing wishing or by feeding ourselves with illusionary relaxing thoughts. It can only be accomplished by applying control.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

You people amaze me the El Nino changing to La Nina is based on if the volcano's under the Pacific ocean being active or not. Why do they call the Pacific the RING OF FIRE for over 500 years! Also you morons Climate Change is caused by the following:  

“The main cause of climate change is climatic astronomical cycles. The Earth revolves around the sun in three movements – once every 26,000 years, every 40,000 years, and once every 100,000 years,” Earth has experienced cold periods (ice ages) and warm periods in roughly 100,000-year cycles, which were caused by the three movements in the past.”

Stop scaring people with all of your gibberish.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Bill CovielloFeb. 9 11:46 pm JST

“The main cause of climate change is climatic astronomical cycles. The Earth revolves around the sun in three movements – once every 26,000 years, every 40,000 years, and once every 100,000 years,” Earth has experienced cold periods (ice ages) and warm periods in roughly 100,000-year cycles, which were caused by the three movements in the past.”

Stop scaring people with all of your gibberish.

The odds of the planet entering a warming period just 200 years after we started burning carbon is pretty small.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Roy, please distinguish between the runaway greenhouse (which is defined in the article by Goldblatt and Watson in a rather peculiar sense) and the ‘ordinary’ water vapour feedback. The research article states the distinction between the two explicitly. The latter physical phenomenon, namely the ‘ordinary’ water vapour feedback, is sufficiently malignant. I see that you do not save effort in your advocacy of petroleum. Why do you love petroleum so much?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Roy, citing a tiny fragment, out of context, is misleading. Here is the full paragraph (the article also contains other paragraphs pertaining to this issue):

"The earlier-mentioned considerations all apply to the case of a strict runaway greenhouse. A transition to a moist greenhouse (§2e) or other hot climate state is not excluded by theory and must be seen as a potential threat, until proved otherwise. In our understanding, this is the physically correct interpretation of the severe hazard of which Hansen [1] warns. The question here is simply how much could human action increase the strength of the greenhouse effect? Kasting & Ackerman [25] found that, with carbon dioxide as the only non-condensible greenhouse gas, over 10 000 ppmv would be needed to induce a moist greenhouse. This is likely higher than could be achieved than by burning all the ‘conventional’ fossil fuel reserves—though the actual amount of fossil fuel available is poorly constrained, especially when one includes ‘exotic’ sources such as tar sands (which are already being exploited) and methane clathrates. Greenhouse gases other than carbon dioxide, cloud or albedo changes could all contribute further warming. Likewise, the exhibition of multiple equilibria in the relevant temperature range [15,17] complicates matters."

You are not an adversary of me, you are an adversary of the planet.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Roy, you are not only misreading the cited paragraph, you are also ignoring reality. Twelve years have elapsed since the publication of the article by Goldblatt and Watson. The warming of the planet is accelerating. Climate disorders, such as described in the present JT article, are exacerbating. Your relentless advocacy of petroleum is not justified.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

The main cause of climate change is climatic astronomical cycles

This has been eliminated completely from the possible causes of the current climate change problem, obviously the best experts in the field are not people uninformed, so their conclusions are much more sollid.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

The research article by Goldblatt and Watson teaches us that the idea that the state of a planet is fixed, constant an eternal is an illusion. The climate system of a planet is indeed a system, just like an electronic circuit, an airplane or a bridge (by the way, learn about the case of the unstable Tacoma Bridge). We are talking about a very complex system – this is why the conclusions of the article are not closed and definite, leave some room for doubt and warn about risks. Any system can be linear or non-linear, stable or unstable, chaotic or non-chaotic. An unstable system may need stabilization, and this is indeed the case of our Planet. Goldblatt and Watson speak about geoengineering. But before going to deep geoengineering, the first thing to do is to get rid of the redundant, stupid insane and archaic addiction to petroleum.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites