La Niña, is here officially. Yes, this was the brewing condition in the Pacific that helped spark an active hurricane season in the Atlantic and could now limit cold air outbreaks this winter in Jacksonville.
Why is it making headlines now?
Because the Pacific water near the equator has been cooler than 0.5º C for a few months and expectations are for theses conditions to continue through the winter.
This should this impact our local weather, milder temperatures and less rain which may promote drought and an environment for an active spring wildfire season.
Fortunately storms tend to be below normal but any individual storm system can still bring an increased risk of hazardous weather, including severe thunderstorms and tornadoes.
While La Niña creates prime breeding grounds for tropical systems in the Atlantic Ocean like we had this year, it has the direct opposite of El Niño, warmer Pacific water, that suppresses Atlantic storms and generates more winter storms across north Florida.