MJO Signals Below-Average Temperatures for Eastern United States through Mid May

The Madden Julian Oscillation (MJO) is currently sitting in phase one and is forecast to start rotating through phases two, three and four.  Weather geek talk aside, get ready for a reappearance of below-average temperatures beginning Friday and potentially lasting through the middle of May. 

MJO Forecast and Temperature Correlation

Notice the below average temperature correlations across much of the eastern half of the United States during phases one through four of the MJO (image above courtesy NOAA).

Preliminary Seasonal Snowfall Totals Align Well With My Winter Forecast

A look at Winter 2020-21 preliminary snowfall totals across the region align nicely with my winter forecast issued last September.

While many locations in the immediate Metro Area received only 50% of average snowfall, our far northern and western counties performed a bit better as did much of northern Maryland. 

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December 2020 May Be Very Cold Across Eastern US

La Nina conditions have strengthened across the Equatorial Pacific with sea surface temperature anomalies approaching negative 1.5 degrees Celsius,  (image below courtesy NOAA).

Historically speaking, La Nina winters that have followed either ENSO neutral (average sea surface temperatures) or El Nino (warmer than average sea surface temperatures) winters have produced colder than average Decembers across the eastern United States. Because last winter featured a weak La Nina, the winter of 2020-21 is considered a “first year” La Nina.

I took a handful of “first year” La Nina winter seasons and ran them through NOAA’s climate database and here are how temperature anomalies in December, January, February and March shook out.

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