Thomson Reuters Foundation

Inform - Connect - Empower

Japan sees higher chance of El Nino this summer

Source: Reuters - Mon, 10 Mar 2014 06:01 GMT
Author: Reuters
hum-nat
Tweet Recommend Google + LinkedIn Email Print
Leave us a comment

* Sea temperatures seen moving to higher than normal this summer

* Previously forecast 50 percent chance of El Nino forming (Adds comment, U.S. forecast, commodities impact)

TOKYO, March 10 (Reuters) - There is a greater possibility of an El Nino weather pattern emerging this summer, Japan's weather bureau said on Monday, after previously forecasting a 50 percent chance of the phenomenon that is often linked to heavy rainfall and droughts.

El Nino - a warming of sea-surface temperatures in the Pacific - can trigger drought in Southeast Asia and Australia and floods in South America, hitting production of key foods such as rice, wheat and sugar.

The potential disruption to supply would come after many crops have already been hit by adverse weather in the Northern Hemisphere that has been in the grip of a savage winter.

"The El Nino predictive model predicts the sea temperatures in the ocean area monitored for El Nino will transition from a level near standard this spring to a higher than standard level this summer," the Japan Meteorological Agency said in a monthly online bulletin about the phenomenon.

Last month, the bureau had pegged the possibility El Nino emerging or not as equal.

The U.S. weather forecaster said last week that the much-feared weather pattern could strike as early as the Northern Hemisphere summer.

Outlooks for higher possibilities of El Nino forming will increase uncertainty in global commodity and energy markets, with coffee, cocoa and natural gas prices roiled by an extended period of extreme weather. (Reporting by James Topham and Osamu Tsukimori; Editing by Himani Sarkar)

We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of the Thomson Reuters Foundation. For more information see our Acceptable Use Policy.

comments powered by Disqus