National Weather Forecaster Sees Increasing Chance of La Niña

(Reuters) -

The likelihood of the La Niña weather pattern, which can cause floods and droughts, is increasing for this fall and winter, a U.S. government weather forecaster said on Thursday.

The National Weather Service’s Climate Prediction Center in its monthly forecast put the chances of La Niña at 55 percent to 60 percent. Last month, it had said there was a 55 percent chance of neutral conditions for December through February.

La Niña emerged last year for the first time since 2012 before fading earlier this year.

Typically less damaging than El Niño, La Niña is characterized by unusually cold ocean temperatures in the equatorial Pacific Ocean and tends to occur unpredictably every two to seven years.