AUSTIN (KXAN) — NOAA declared early Thursday morning that El Niño conditions are present and are expected to gradually strengthen later this winter.

All of the deterministic regions of the equatorial Pacific met the +0.5°C threshold for an El Niño to be in play. And in addition to the water requirement, low-level and upper-level winds also showed correlating El Niño conditions.

Warmer than normal temperatures in the upper-ocean levels observed since March 2023
Computer models point towards further strengthening of El Nino conditions through Winter 2023-2024

Forecast:  By winter, there is an 84% chance of a moderate El Niño or stronger, and a 56% chance of a strong El Niño developing. 

An El Niño Advisory is in now in effect. El Niño conditions have been observed and are expected to continue to strengthen through the upcoming winter.

What does El Niño mean for winter?

El Niño conditions typically result in a warmer Pacific Northwest, wetter in the south, southwest and coastal southeast with drier weather in the interior southeast. Cooler weather is also more likely for the south and southeast.

Typical weather associated with an El Niño pattern

In addition to its mainland impacts, El Niño conditions typically favor fewer developing hurricanes in the Atlantic, but stronger hurricane activity in the Central and Eastern Pacific basin.

El Niño typically results in fewer developing hurricanes in the Atlantic basin

Stay with the KXAN Weather team for the latest update.