Aussie Scientists: La Nina Strengthened

December 7, 2011 12:50 AM

The Australian Bureau of Meteorology says La Nina conditions strengthened across the tropical Pacific Basin during November, but they say climate models signal the event will likely peak over the next month, but still last until at least the end of February.

"Despite this strengthening, the La Nina remains weaker than at the same time in 2010," states the bureau. "Australia’s climate has responded to these recent changes, with above-average rainfall across large parts of the north and west of the country since October."

"La Nina periods are usually, but not always, associated with above-normal rainfall during the second half of the year and summer (Dec.-Feb.) across large parts of Australia, particularly the eastern and northern regions," it adds. "Daytime temperatures are typically cooler-than-average and tropical cyclone risk for northern Australia increases during the cyclone season (Nov.-April). During La Nina years, the first tropical cyclone to cross the Australian coast typically occurs in the first half of December."

Juli says: La Nina has brought untimely rains to key areas of the country during its winter grains harvest, raising the quantify of low-quality wheat which adds to competition for U.S. corn in the feed market.

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