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La Nina holds global warming in check
As we have underlined on numerous occasions here at PWS the trend for global warming is incontrovertible, but that doesn’t mean that it will be a gradual, or at times, noticeable process. NASA data for November 2011 in fact show that temperature rise overall across the globe has remained just about stationary. This continues a trend that has been in place for most of this decade.
Responsible for the current trend is La Nina, the huge area of cold current that continues to be present in the equatorial Pacific Ocean. It must be remembered that the connection between the world’s oceans and temperature outcomes across the Earth’s continents is ineluctable: It is the oceans – not just their surface but the entire body of water - that govern what happens.
It is presently estimated that La Nina (cooling) conditions will be at their greatest in early spring 2012. What is still not understood is just how long this recurring La Nina phase might continue. As can be understood La Nina is acting as a brake on global warming – note however that planetary temperatures are not falling – and any resurgence in El Nino (warming) conditions would almost certainly be accompanied by a return to progressive increases in worldwide temperature values.
Ray Anthony
Chief Assistant Weather Forecaster
Thursday December 15th 2011