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EarthSat Forecast Calls for Cold November, Cold Winter Ahead

This winter will be colder than last year and much closer to the 30-year norm for the national average expectation, according to MDA EarthSat Energy Weather's Winter Outlook, which concurred with a winter forecast by AccuWeather issued earlier this month. EarthSat also set 3:1 odds for a colder-than-normal November in the eastern United States.

The warmer-than-normal Atlantic Ocean, which triggered this year's strong hurricane activity, is the primary source for EarthSat's more aggressive cold weather forecast, said EarthSat forecaster Matt Rogers. EarthSat's forecast is similar to one issued by AccuWeather, which said the northeastern United States will be colder-than-normal (see NGI, Oct. 17). The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's outlook calls for warmer-than-normal temperatures across most of the country.

EarthSat also noted "there are indications that key North Atlantic and polar indices are beginning to turn toward the colder side in time for November."

This winter will be volatile, with the coldest anomalies more frequently toward the East Coast rather than the Midcontinent, and the West averaging warmer than normal, according to EarthSat. Without a dominant driving force like El Nino, this winter "has a strong chance of being very volatile -- similar to last year..." There will, however, be more frequent cooling events in the eastern United States overall compared with last year.

"Historically, it has been shown that consistent hot summers tend to lead toward colder eastern winters," said Rogers. "Also, the lack of a significant El Nino or La Nina increases the chances for colder winter weather as the Pacific is less active. Active tropical seasons also appear to lean the eastern winter colder."

EarthSat's precipitation forecast for the interior Pacific Northwest is to be drier than normal, but "not nearly as dry as last year," because of changes in the sea surface temperatures in the North Pacific. Along the East Coast, the forecast favors wet conditions with less activity than normal in the Midcontinent.

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