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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