The Climate Prediction Center (CPC) says there is a 50% chance that El Nino will develop during the second half of 2012. Neutral ENSO conditions prevailed in May 2012, following the dissipation of La Nina in April, it says.
"The extensive volume of above-average sub-surface water temperatures indicates that the tropical Pacific SST anomalies will likely warm further in the coming months," states CPC. "A majority of models predict ENSO-neutral to continue through the June-August (JJA) season. Thereafter, most of the dynamical models predict El Niño to develop during JAS (July-September), while the statistical models tend to favor the continuation of ENSO-neutral. Thus, there remains uncertainty as to whether ENSO-neutral or El Niño will prevail during the second half of the year. The evolving conditions, combined with model forecasts, suggest that ENSO-neutral and El Niño are roughly equally likely during the late northern summer and fall."
Juli says: According to the latest data, El Nino isn't likely to develop until at least July, but could be delayed until September or later. Bottom line -- the sooner El Nino develops, the better the odds for trendline and above yields this growing season.