Again, researchers say, we may have to bite the bullet and prepare for a busy summer. Researchers are closely monitoring this year's climate patterns, as they indicate the possible formation of a "Super El Niño," a phenomenon that follows three consecutive La Niña years.
Do you know what I'm talking about?
For the uninitiated, El Niño events occur when the surface waters of the eastern Pacific Ocean are warmer than normal. When they happen, they trigger weather events that can have catastrophic consequences. And with the help of man-made warming, El Niños are becoming more intense and more difficult to manage.
The last extreme El Niño was in 2016, when global average temperatures set new records. That year, as some of you may recall, was marked by devastating weather events: 750 natural disasters.
A "Super Niño" on the horizon
From Australian Bureau of Meteorology updates (I link them to you here), we learn that all seven climate models examined show that by August sea surface temperatures will exceed the El Niño threshold that occurred in 2016.
For now, the researchers caution that it is too early to pin down this prediction and that projections are less reliable during the Southern Hemisphere's fall. The trend, however, worries and not a little.
Prepare for the worst, hoping for the best
Mike McPhaden, senior scientist at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) warns us about the possible consequences of a Super El Niño: "True major events impact the entire planet, causing extreme droughts, floods, heat waves and storms. If that happens, we will have to prepare for the worst. But it could also fade. In any case, it is better to remain vigilant and ready for any eventuality."
A Super El Niño represents an unknown factor that could put a strain on the environment and our ability to adapt. It would be, after 7 years, the occurrence of an event that usually reverberated every 20 years on the planet. If they served other demonstrations of ongoing climate change.
We just have to cross our fingers and hope that the forecasts prove to be excessively pessimistic. In any case, let's always remember to respect our planet, because it's the only one we have.