Please login to view this content.
02/21/2019, 3:19 pm EST

North America Season 1-3 Ahead Outlook

Outlooks for spring, summer and autumn 2019 Summary: The Climate Impact Company season 1-3 ahead climate forecasts are updated and valid for spring, summer and autumn 2019. The outlook is based on presence of weak El Nino, regional warm SSTA off each coast and the soil moisture regime ahead of the warm season. The spring outlook is confidently projecting a warmer-than-normal pattern in the West while Texas and Louisiana are wetter-than-normal. The entire U.S. is projected warmer-than-normal during summer with hottest risk in Texas, the Northeast and Northwest. Most of the U.S. is warmer than normal in the U.S. Climate discussion: The outlooks are generated by a constructed analog. Given the uniqueness of climate in recent years added methodologies include incorporation of optimum climate normal (OCN) and influence of unique regional SSTA regions. A constructed analog is simply the current ENSO regime retrogressed 12 months to find similar character in the Nino34 SSTA. Given the change in the long-term cycles of ENSO, Pacific decadal oscillation (PDO) and Atlantic multi-decadal oscillation (AMO) in the 1990’s analog years are generally selected from the past 2-3 decades only. OCN is the 10-15 year climatology rather than the conventional 30-year climatology given the steady annual warming of the global climate. Regional SSTA have become an important predictor for portions of continents often with residual downstream affects. Large areas of warm SSTA tend to support warming subtropical ridging while cool SSTA regions support presence of a cool semi-permanent upper trough. The current global SSTA pattern (Fig. 1) indicates 5 regions which will have influence on the U.S. climate. Of course, ENSO leads the charge although direct impacts on North America climate during the warm season by an ENSO regime are not nearly as strong as during winter. ENSO is trending into El Nino now and all dynamic/statistical models, on average keep a weak El Nino going for much of 2019 (Fig. 2). Regional warm SSTA are located in the Gulf of Alaska and southwest of California. The question is whether these warm zones spread into one-another signaling warm phase of the PDO for 2019. Dynamic models increase the warming but further diagnostic evidence is required to increase confidence on that call. For now, CIC projects a weak +PDO for 2019. Presence of this feature increases risk of a western North America upper ridge pattern. Off the East Coast of the U.S. a semi-permanent warm SSTA zone continues and is expected to remain in-place for 2019. Influence on North America climate is increased risk of an upper ridge across the Southeast/East U.S. or just offshore. The ridge is held in-place by an expected semi-permanent upper trough over a cool pool south of Greenland. The constructed analog forecast is based on the presence of warm SSTA off each coast of the U.S. and weak El Nino to project the season 1-3 ahead climate. The analog years indicating presence of weak El Nino through the warm season coupled with warm SSTA off the west coast of North America and East Coast of the U.S. include 2005 and 2015. Also considered in the warm season forecast is the influence of soil moisture. Currently, a large portion of the Central and East U.S. is observing soil moisture in the 95 to 99 percent wettest in the 1895-2019 climatology (Fig. 3). Historically, taking from the past 2-3 decades of climatology (for JAN/FEB) the super wet late winter soil moisture condition across the U.S. is similar to 2016, 2010, 2005 and 1998. Interestingly, each of these analog years found an El Nino-driven climate to produce the wet soil regimes and later that year El Nino was gone and La Nina was developing. A La Nina later in 2019 is not out of the question. Combining the group of analog years (above) 2005 is weighted twice and 2015 once to produce the base analog forecast. 2016, 2010 and 1998 are eliminated due to the strong La Nina that developed and not expected in 2019. As previously indicated OCN is also averaged with the analog years. Fig. 1: The global SSTA weekly analysis by NCDC/PSD and regions having influence on the North America climate for 2019. Fig. 2: A collection of dynamic and statistical ENSO phase forecast models using Nino34 SSTA indicates weak El Nino ahead. Fig. 3: The daily soil moisture anomaly observations based on ranking using the 1895-2019 climatology is indicated. DEC/JAN/FEB 2018-19 verification: Most winter outlooks were biased cool in the South U.S. due to an anticipated weak El Nino episode. Other factors outweighed the influence of ENSO on the U.S. climate pattern during winter especially an unusually strong polar vortex delivering historic cold to the Midwest and West U.S. in February. The warm SSTA off the Southeast U.S. coast biased the southeast quarter of the nation very warm. The combination of strong upper level features including the February polar vortex combined with persistent warmer than normal ocean water either side of the continent also lead to a wet/white winter leaving U.S. soil moisture abundantly wet as meteorological winter concludes. The winter 2018-19 temperature anomalies so far (Fig. 4) are more representative of a La Nina climate compared to an El Nino climate (Fig. 5-6). Fig. 4-6: The Dec. 1, 2018 to Feb. 19, 2019 U.S. temperature anomalies compared to winter El Nino and La Nina temperature composites. MAR/APR/MAY 2019: Forecast confidence INCREASES as weak El Nino is more confidently forecast and the influence of late season snow cover and wet U.S. soils causes the outlook to be less anomalous warm than previously issued. That’s the trend the constructed analog should present. During spring the clear warm zone is the West U.S. despite the cold/snowy end to meteorological winter. Occasionally, the warmth stretches across the central Plains. Canada and the Northeast U.S. are adjusted cooler to near normal. The Gulf region is temperate with above normal cloudiness and rainfall expected most obvious over Texas. Wet weather also affects British Columbia. Fig. 7-8: Climate Impact Company constructed analog climate forecast for meteorological spring 2019. Previous forecast below. JUN/JUL/AUG 2019: Forecast confidence is about average. The concern is that the Great Plains, Midwest to Appalachian region could be cooler due to the wet soils in this area entering the summer season. Anomalous heat in the Northwest is confidently forecast and a fairly significant warmer change. The East U.S. remains hotter than normal although less extreme than previously indicated. The slightly less hot outlook is likely caused by widespread wet soils entering the summer season. Not quite as hot but the East is likely very humid this summer season. The precipitation outlook favors anomalous dry climate across the western Great Plains and Texas plus Florida. The dryness in Texas suggests at some point during summer the heat could become extreme. The only wet zone is confined to the southwest Tennessee Valley. The East-central U.S. forecast is not nearly as wet as previously indicated. Fig. 9-10: Climate Impact Company constructed analog climate forecast for meteorological summer 2019. Previous forecast below. SEP/OCT/NOV 2019: The autumn outlook is warmer than normal except temperate in the Southeast U.S. Forecast confidence on the temperature outlook is above average while the precipitation outlook is clearly made with below normal confidence. Of interest is where the wet anomalies are in regard to potential tropical cyclone activity which is off the East Coast and Mexico. Fig. 11-12: Climate Impact Company constructed analog climate forecast for meteorological autumn 2019.  
02/21/2019, 3:07 pm EST

Daily Feature: Long-lead Forecasts

NOAA Long-lead forecasts March 2019 Outlook Fig. 1-2: The NOAA/CPC March 2019 temperature and precipitation probability outlook. Comment: The polar vortex-inspired cold and supporting snow lingers into March central continent. Warm SSTA southwest of California and east of the U.S. East Coast support warm upper ridging for Southern California and the Atlantic States. The East is wet ahead of the mean trough position anchored over the Central U.S. Spring (MAR/APR/MAY) Outlook Fig. 3-4: The NOAA/CPC MAR/APR/MAY2019 temperature and precipitation probability outlook. Comment: NOAA is convinced an El Nino climate emerges during spring supporting the wet Southern U.S. climate forecast. Each coast is warmer than normal as supported by projected warming SSTA off each coast. Summer (JUN/JUL/AUG) Outlook Fig. 5-6: The NOAA/CPC JUN/JUL/AUG 2019 temperature and precipitation probability outlook. Comment: NOAA continues to maintain a wet climate pattern in the Mid-Atlantic States for summertime. Already wet soil moisture coupled with additional wet climate maintains high flood risk.  The Northwest is dry. Most of the U.S. is warm as supported by projected warm SSTA off each coast and optimum climate normal. Wet soils suppresses heat risk in the Great Plains. Climate Impact Company will issue the constructed analog season 1-3 ahead forecast this afternoon.  
02/21/2019, 3:03 pm EST

Midday Energy Market Update

 GFS indicates next week’s arctic outbreak will produce historic cold. Chicago low temperatures to -4 and -5 Mar. 4-5. Minneapolis -23 same days. Boston to 11 Mar. 3-5. GFS is highly changeable (which was the case prior to arctic outbreak early FEB). CIC constructed analog season 1-3 ahead forecast out this afternoon   Midday 12Z GFS…   Days 6-10: Warmer except colder New England and Montana. Days 11-15: Colder Upper Midwest; warmer Southeast. Dates HDD forecast 12-hr change 24 hours ago NOAA Nml Feb 15-21 211.0 0.0 209.2 191 Feb. 22-28 178.5 -1.6 184.1 175 Mar. 1-7 224.0 -23.0 195.6 163  Table 1: CWG tabulates the 12Z GFS OP gas population weight HDD forecast into early March.   The midday GFS and storms/cold…   3-4 in. of rain Tennessee Valley from weekend storm; tornado outbreak Mid-South Saturday. Midday model sees some Alberta Clipper style snows across NY/New England later next week. Midday model highlight is the cold forecast for early March with departures from normal of 35-45F below normal near Calgary to Des Moines March 2 and reaching 20-30F below normal New England March 5. Record breaking cold air mass.   Winter 2018-19 looked like La Nina…   Preliminary winter 2018-19 temperature anomalies show northern chil and Southeast/Mid-Atlantic warmth. Reminiscent of a La Nina (not El Nino winter climate).      
02/21/2019, 8:06 am EST

Southern Company 5-Day Weather Alert

Flood watch in effect northern portions of Alabama/Georgia Severe weather outbreak Saturday including tornado risk Birmingham… Flash flood watch in effect. Yesterday: 61/47 Rainfall: 0.54 in. Max wind gust: 34 mph THU: Showers, possibly a thunderstorm. High 60. Low 54. FRI: Showers and thunderstorms High 70. Low 60. SAT: More showers and thunderstorms likely. Severe storms late day/evening. High 73. Low 53. SUN: Becoming partly cloudy. High 65. Low 37. MON: Mostly sunny. High 63. Low 43. Days 6-10: None. Normal: High 61. Low 38. Atlanta… Flash flood watch in effect. Yesterday: 45/39 Rainfall: 1.25 in. THU: Showers and thunderstorms likely. High 64. Low 54. FRI: Showers and thunderstorms. High 63. Low 50. SAT: Chance of a shower, possibly some thunder. High 64. Low 56. SUN: Becoming partly cloudy. High 67. Low 40. MON: Mostly sunny. High 64. Low 44. Days 6-10: None. Normal: High 60. Low 39. Macon… Yesterday: 51/43 Rainfall: 0.01 in. THU: Chance of showers, may thunder. High 75. Low 59. FRI: Showers and thunderstorms likely. High 75. Low 55. SAT: Chance of showers and thunderstorms. High 70. Low 60. SUN: Becoming partly cloudy. High 72. Low 42. MON: Mostly sunny. High 68. Low 40. Days 6-10: None. Normal: High 64. Low 40. Montgomery… Dense fog advisory. Yesterday: 71/48 Rainfall: 0.37 in. THU: Showers and thunderstorms likely. High 73. Low 62. FRI: Showers and thunderstorms likely. High 77. Low 61. SAT: Becoming partly cloudy. High 81. Low 61. SUN: Partly cloudy. High 71. Low 42. MON: Mostly sunny. High 69. Low 45. Days 6-10: None. Normal: High 65. Low 41. Mobile… Yesterday: 75/65 Rainfall: 0.02 in. Max wind gust: 35 mph THU: Showers likely, may thunder. High 76. Low 64. FRI: Chance of thunderstorms. High 77. Low 64. SAT: Showers and thunderstorms likely. Severe storms late day/evening. High 78. Low 58. SUN: Becoming partly cloudy. High 68. Low 42. MON: Mostly sunny. High 68. Low 50. Days 6-10: None. Normal: High 67. Low 45.