GUWAHATI, Sept 7 - A vast portion of the globe is likely to experience above normal temperature during September-November this year. July this year was the hottest month on record. Again, indications are also there that the man-induced climate change has now become more powerful than a major natural force of nature. These have come to light from the latest quarterly El-Nino Southern Oscillation (ENSO) update of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) released early this week.
While preparing the update, the Geneva-headquartered WMO also took into consideration several factors, including the Indian Ocean Dipole, several forecast models and opinions of experts the world over. It has predicted that the average sea surface and land temperatures across large parts of the world would be above normal during September-November this year despite the expected absence of a full-blown El-Nino event.
The ENSO update said sea surface temperatures in the tropical Pacific returned to neutral levels in July. Tropical Pacific has been at the borderline to weak El-Nino levels since October, 2018. The WMO ENSO update also maintains that the atmospheric indicators also transitioned to neutral during the period.
The WMO has maintained that during the month of July, heat waves and other extreme weather events were there without a strong El-Nino event. It further said that the signal from man-induced climate change has now become more powerful than that from a major natural force of nature.
The WMO website quoted Max Dilley, Director of the WMO Climate Adaptation and Prediction Branch, making these assertions.
It maintained that the chance of neutral conditions during September-November 2019 is about 60 per cent, while chances for El-Nino and La-Nina are about 30 per cent and 10 per cent respectively. Although neutral conditions are most likely through the December-February 2019-20 season, the chance for a return to El-Nino rises slightly to 35 per cent.
El-Nino Southern Oscillation is a naturally occurring phenomenon. It is caused by the combination of fluctuations in ocean temperatures in the central and eastern equatorial Pacific and the changes in the atmosphere. It is associated with hazards such as heavy rains, floods and drought in different parts of the world.
El-Nino typically has a warming influence on global temperatures, while La Nina has the opposite effect. But even so-called ENSO neutral months are warmer this time than in the past as air and sea surface temperatures and ocean heat have increased due to climate change. With more than 90 per cent of the energy trapped by greenhouse gases going into the ocean, ocean heat content reached new record levels in 2018, said the quarterly ENSO update.
It needs mention here that the Indian monsoon rainfall is highly modulated by the ENSO. Scientists here maintain that temperatures are rising at a rapid pace in this part of the globe too.