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El Nino's Peak Has Weather Forecaster Warning of La Nina - with the opposite results


Written By: Eric Anderson, Jan 05, 2016
Bloomberg is reporting at here that a number of El Nino-Southern Oscillation indicators suggest that the 2015-16 El Nino has peaked and weather models predict it will decline in coming months, Australia’s Bureau of Meteorology said on its website on Tuesday. Conditions will return to neutral during the second quarter with a chance of La Nina in the second half of 2016, it said.
 
La Nina is a cooling in the equatorial Pacific Ocean, sometimes thought of as El Nino’s opposite. The two are extreme phases of a naturally occurring cycle, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Based on the 26 El Nino events since 1900, about 50 percent have been followed by a neutral year with 40 percent by La Nina, according to Australia’s weather bureau.
 
“Neutral and La Nina are equally likely for the second half,” the bureau said. A repeat of El Nino is the least likely outcome, it said.
 
The current El Nino is rated as one of the three strongest since 1950. The warming of the equatorial Pacific changes weather worldwide, bringing drought to parts of Asia while the southern U.S. can get more rain. Its effects helped palm oil cap its best year since 2010, while sugar posted its first annual gain in five years.
 
Roiling Markets
 
La Nina can also roil agricultural markets as it changes weather. A large part of the agricultural U.S. tends to dry out during La Nina events, while parts of Australia and Indonesia can be wetter than normal. Citigroup Inc. has said that a transition to a strong La Nina may present significant upside potential for grains price volatility.
 
The previous La Nina began in 2010 and endured into 2012. Conditions typically last between 9 months and 12 months, while some episodes may persist for as long as two years, according to NOAA. Both La Nina and El Nino tend to peak during the Northern Hemisphere winter.
 
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Posted in Ag news | Tagged with el nino la nina weather | More articles by Eric Anderson

Ethiopia to buy more wheat to avert drought crisis


Written By: Eric Anderson, Nov 20, 2015
Wed Nov 18, 2015 11:36am EST
Reuters

Ethiopia to buy more wheat to avert drought crisis

By Aaron Maasho

ADDIS ABABA, Nov 18 Ethiopia expects to open a tender to buy additional wheat after purchasing one million tonnes to tackle extreme food shortages due to drought, a senior official said on Wednesday.

Failed rains during the spring and summer have sparked food and water shortages in the Horn of Africa nation, which boasts one of the continent's highest growth rates but depends heavily on rain-fed farming.

The United Nations says 8 million people in the country of 96 million will need food aid but the number could rise to 15 million by early 2016, owing to shortages exacerbated by the effects of the El Nino weather pattern.

"In total, nearly a million metric tonnes have been purchased," government spokesman Getachew Reda told a news conference, adding around $280 million has so far been spent to tackle the crisis.

"A significant part of it is going to be used to address this challenge. An equally significant part will also be meant to address inflationary pressures that could result from some misguided moves in the market," Getachew said.

El Nino, marked by warming sea-surface temperatures in the Pacific Ocean, causes extremes such as scorching weather in some regions of the globe and heavy rains and flooding in others.

Meteorologists expect El Nino to peak between October and January.

Humanitarian agencies say Ethiopia needs $600 million to cope with the crisis. The United Nations says 350,000 children are expected to require treatment for acute malnutrition in the country by the end of 2015.

"We are going to be okay for the next three or four months, at least from the reserves that we have," Getachew said, adding there had been no loss of life owing to the drought so far.

"We are ready for any eventuality. What that means ... is we will be out in a shopping spree (to buy wheat) once again."

(Reporting by Aaron Maasho; editing by Drazen Jorgic and David Evans)

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Posted in Farm related news | Tagged with wheat draught el nino ethiopia | More articles by Eric Anderson

El Nino to strengthen in winter, gradually weaken in spring


Written By: Eric Anderson, Sep 11, 2015

Reuters— A U.S. government weather forecaster on Thursday said El Nino conditions would gradually weaken through the Northern Hemisphere spring after peaking in late fall or early winter.

The National Weather Service’s Climate Prediction Center said the likelihood that El Nino conditions would persist through the Northern Hemisphere winter was about 95 per cent, up from a more than 90 per cent chance in last month’s forecast.

There has been a growing consensus among forecasters for a strong El Nino, the warming of Pacific sea-surface temperatures. The World Meteorological Organization said last week that this year’s phenomenon could be the strongest on record and was likely to peak between October and January.

The weather pattern can roil crops and commodities prices. Japan’s weather bureau said earlier on Thursday that there was a strong possibility that El Nino would stretch into the winter.

El Nino conditions would probably contribute to a below-normal Atlantic hurricane season and to above-normal seasons in both the central and Eastern Pacific hurricane basins, the CPC said.

It added that across the contiguous U.S., the effects of El Nino were likely to remain minimal during the early Northern Hemisphere autumn and increase into the late fall and winter.

The CPC said this month that “all models surveyed” predicted that El Nino would last into the Northern Hemisphere spring, up from an 80 per cent chance it estimated last month.

The El Nino phenomenon would mean increased likelihood of rain for parched areas of drought-stricken California later in the fall, although the Pacific Northwest states of Oregon and Washington would probably not get much relief.

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Posted in Farm related news | Tagged with weather el nino | More articles by Eric Anderson

El Nino now seen more likely to last into spring


Written By: Eric Anderson, Aug 14, 2015

Reuters is reporting that  . . .

A U.S. government weather forecaster on Thursday raised the likelihood that El Nino conditions would last into the Northern Hemisphere’s early spring to 85 per cent, boosting the probability that drought-stricken California could see increased rains.

The Climate Prediction Center, a U.S. National Weather Service agency, last month forecast an 80 per cent chance that conditions would last through early spring. The CPC still says there is a more than 90 per cent chance that El Nino conditions would last through the Northern Hemisphere winter.

The new forecast marginally raises the risk that the El Nino phenomenon, the warming of Pacific sea-surface temperatures, will unleash a period of extreme and potentially damaging weather across the globe.

Past instances have caused heavy rains and floods, hitting grain crops in South America, and scorching weather as far as Asia and East Africa.

But one potential El Nino beneficiary could be California, where record-low rainfall has prompted water usage restrictions and contributed to the spread of devastating wildfires.

“It definitely would increase the likelihood of heavy rains in the winter there, which would certainly improve their situation tremendously,” said Donald Keeney, senior agricultural meteorologist with Maryland-based MDA Weather Services.

California could begin to get increased rainfall as early as October and definitely by November or December, Keeney said.

Rainfall will probably not increase in the Pacific Northwest states of Oregon and Washington, which are also suffering from droughts, although they could experience higher temperatures like much of the northern U.S., Keeney said.

The CPC said the effects of El Nino were likely to remain minimal across the contiguous U.S. for the rest of the summer but would increase into the late fall and winter.

In Western and central Canada, an El Nino event is most often associated with above-normal temperatures and drier conditions during winter.

El Nino would probably contribute to a below-normal Atlantic hurricane season, the CPC said. That would reduce the likelihood of storms disrupting energy operations in the Gulf of Mexico.

However, the agency said El Nino was likely to lead to above-normal hurricane seasons in both the central and Eastern Pacific hurricane basins.

Reporting for Reuters by Luc Cohen in New York. Includes files from AGCanada.com Network staff.

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Posted in Farm related news | Tagged with el nino global weather climate change | More articles by Eric Anderson

El Nino Defying Rain Seen Boosting Australia Wheat Yield Outlook


Written By: Eric Anderson, Aug 06, 2015

Bloomberg is reporting today that . . .

Australia’s wheat harvest may be bigger than previously forecast as rain in the past month boosted the outlook for yields, according to National Australia Bank Ltd.

Output may total 21.6 million metric tons this season amid better conditions in New South Wales and South Australia, agribusiness economist Phin Ziebell wrote in a report on Thursday. The bank had previously warned that El Nino risked reducing the crop to 20 million tons or less. Timely rainfall in spring, which starts in September, may further boost production to about 23 million tons, the bank estimates.

Farmers and traders are assessing the impact of El Nino, which typically brings dry weather to eastern Australia and parts of Asia while altering rainfall in South America. The Pacific Ocean weather pattern continues to strengthen and will last into next year, Australia’s weather bureau predicts. The wheat crop is holding up better-than-expected as recent rainfall helped ease concerns El Nino would curb production, a survey of six analysts and traders compiled by Bloomberg shows.

 

Full story at http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-08-06/el-nino-defying-rain-seen-boosting-australia-wheat-yield-outlook

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Posted in Crop reports | Tagged with wheat Australia El Nino crop forecast | More articles by Eric Anderson

Record El Nino makes global record-hot year look inevitable


Written By: Eric Anderson, Jul 20, 2015

Bloomberg is reporting that . . . .

This is a new kind of heat. In more than 135 years of global temperature data, four of the five hottest months on record all happened in 2015: February, March, May, and now June. 

This has been the hottest start to a year by far, according to data released today by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The record heat is likely to continue as an already strong El Niño weather pattern in the Pacific Ocean continues to intensify, ripping more heat into the atmosphere. This monster El Niño may itself be on track to break records.

Results from the world's top monitoring agencies vary slightly. NOAA and the Japan Meteorological Agency both had June as the hottest month on record. NASA had it as tied with June 1998 for the hottest. All three agencies agree that there has never been a hotter start to the year than the past six months.

See http://www.bloomberg.com/news/features/2015-07-20/monster-el-ni-o-makes-record-hot-year-look-inevitable

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Posted in Farm related news | Tagged with el nino global weather climate change | More articles by Eric Anderson