How the Climate System Works

Temperature extremes have been pretty unusual across the United States so far in 2014. Looking back over this time period quickly reveals at least part of what was going on: the polar jet stream got into a serious rut.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

  • In early June 2010, NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center reported that the ocean and atmosphere conditions across the Pacific were favorable for the development of a La Niña episode.

  • Weather in the Southeast this fall and winter is keeping up with the dry part of the typical La Niña pattern. Precipitation across most of the Southeast was "below" or "much below" normal for October-December.

  • The early wet season of 2010 was typical of La Niña, with rainfall in December 2010 between 200 and 400 percent above normal in much of Queensland, according to the Australian Bureau of Meteorology.