NOAA Predicts Warmer-Than-Usual Winter In New England

BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) — The U.S. National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration is predicting and warmer-than-usual winter in New England, thanks in part to an ongoing La Nina season.

NOAA released its U.S. seasonal outlook Friday from December 2020 through February 2021.

“With La Nina well established and expected to persist through the upcoming 2020 winter season, we anticipate the typical, cooler, wetter North, and warmer, drier South, as the most likely outcome of winter weather that the U.S. will experience this year,” said Mike Halpert, deputy director of NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center.

According to National Weather Service Meteorologist Torry Gaucher, "warmer-than-usual" may not mean as much to New England residents as it does to scientists.

"For southern New England during a La Nina year, temperatures are on average around 32.7 degrees, and that is just slightly warmer than what a normal winter would average at 31.8 degrees."

When it comes to what a La Nina year means for expected precipitation levels, Gaucher said that one is harder to call.

"It's an equal chance that it could be slightly below normal to slightly above normal," he said. "That's wiggle room of about 33 percent."

NOAA also said due to the La Nina climate pattern, southern parts of the U.S. may experience expanded and intensifying drought during the winter months ahead.

WBZ NewsRadio's Shari Small reports:

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