Central New York, Weather

Web Extra: El Niño Could Impact Central New York

By Peter Levchuck SYRACUSE N.Y. (NCC News) – Temperatures have taken a slight dip this past week, but will the cold stay throughout the winter?

According to scientists at NOAA, it might not.

The government agency announced earlier last week that they issued an El Niño Watch.

El Niño is a natural weather pattern that occurs every two to seven years, where water temperatures in the equatorial Pacific are .5 degrees Celsius warmer than average, according to NOAA.

The high temperatures send cooler, denser water with nutrients for marine life deeper, causing many species to migrate to cooler waters. This migration negatively impacts fishing industries in South America and the West Coast of the United States.

The warm waters also create a high pressure system, which creates stormy conditions for California and parts of Arizona.

El Niño’s impact reaches beyond the Pacific. Across the country, the weather pattern brings lower temperatures to the West Coast and Pacific Northwest, and higher temperatures to the Northeast and Midwest.

The last time El Niño took place was during the 2015-16 Winter Season, when days passed where temperatures were higher in New York City than in Los Angeles.

Central New York also saw warm temperatures then. That winter, Syracuse saw a 30-percent decrease in the total snowfall.