“La Niña” is supposed to make the German winter warmer. Due to global warming, circulation patterns last longer – and apparently also repeat themselves more frequently.
Munich – The weather phenomenon La Niña occurs for the third time in a row, three years in a row. “That’s new,” explains wetter.com meteorologist Hartmut Mühlbauer. La Niña is formed in the eastern Pacific, but it also throws the weather in the northern hemisphere upside down.
Europe could face an overall relatively warm winter with a cold spell in December. “We expect a warmer than usual winter,” said Carlo Buontempo, head of the Copernicus Climate Change Service, which monitors climate change phenomena for the EU. Nevertheless, there could be cold spells with little wind, he explained. One reason for the overall warmer winter could be the La Niña weather phenomenon.
What exactly happens at La Niña?
At the moment it looks like there will be a cold spell in December, says Buontempo. “In a La Nina year, late winter in Europe often has winds from the west, so it will be warm and humid,” Buontempo said in an early fall forecast.
This is the weather phenomenon La Niña briefly explained:
- In the eastern Pacific, the surface water near the equator cools down because unusually large changes in air pressure occur – usually after the occurrence of the El Niño weather phenomenon.
- This triggers above-average air pressure differences in the East Pacific (between Indonesia and South America) and strengthens the trade winds.
- Global effects of this: rainfall and cooling in Southeast Asia, drought in South America, cold in North America and – possibly – also cold in Europe.
In August, the World Weather Organization (WMO) also spoke of a La Niña phenomenon that would last until the end of November and would only recede in the course of December. It is likely that climate change is responsible for the lengthening of La Niña weather patterns.
La Niña: The concrete effects on the German weather in autumn
Reputable meteorologists warn against long-term forecasts: in order to predict the weather, many influencing factors have to be considered that cannot be reliably determined over a longer period of time. Nevertheless, a continuation of the La Niña phenomenon would make some weather forecasts in Germany more likely. Wetter.com sees winter implications for North America in particular, where La Niña means there is a greater likelihood of a cold winter with heavy snowfall. In Europe, too, a cold winter can often be observed parallel to a La Niña event – although extremely cold winters are only the case with strong La Niña events.
According to focus.de , we are facing another very warm week at the beginning of November. A global heat wave with an average of more than 5 degrees above normal weather could also be caused by La Niña: The phenomenon ensures that air masses can spread further south and north. While the temperatures in Greenland are over 20 degrees warmer than average, in Germany they are around 10 to 12 degrees above average – i.e. around 20 degrees, which looks summery. In addition to La Niña, the hot summer of 2022 is also responsible for this, because several extremes often follow one another. Whether another La Niña cycle will follow in mid-November is still open. (AFP/kat)