El Niño 2015 May Be The Largest One Yet


El Nino goes into affect quickly, already starting the process that may kill thousands. The storm is caused by the red line (heating of the water) and effect the whole planet.

Andrew Willings, Staff Writer

If you are not aware of El Niño, you will be soon. After 18 years, the infamous El Niño is returning, but this time, possibly twice as strong. Preparations are being made.

“El Niño” is a global weather event that takes place repeatedly, although several years apart, and consists of the abnormal warming of water near the equator. This results in massive atmospheric changes that alters weather drastically. The name El Niño came from fishermen off the west coast of South America who were the first to notice appearances of unusually warm water that occurred at year’s end. The phenomenon became known as El Niño because of its tendency to occur around Christmas time. El Niño is Spanish for “the boy child” and is named after the baby Jesus. The last El Niño, which until this year had been the largest to date, took place in 1997 and killed an estimated 23,000 and cost 45 billion dollars to repair damages. Using several methods to spot, track, and study El Niño, the event hit a high of 2.3 on the standard storm rating scale. Many scientists believe this year may go much over 2.3, possibly twice as high. Keep in mind, weather, although able to be tracked, is never definite.

Many are hopeful for another strong El Niño. They believe the massive rainstorms might solve California’s drought. Not only is it expected to bring wet weather to California, but El Niño typically brings a precipitation amount twice as heavy a then normal.  Also, on a more destructive note, California should expect massive flooding and mudslides to occur sooner than later.

El Niño will occur sometime near Christmas, and there is currently an 80% chance that El Niño could continue all the way into spring of 2016. Although this could be good for some areas of the world, it could be devastating for others, killing even more and costing more in repairs from 1997’s record- breaking storms.

Although El Niño will most likely have no effect on Georgia, we should still prepare just in case. Make sure to open drains and keep ditches and other water collection ways clear of debris. Also, store up plenty of batteries for flashlights and electronic lanterns. If your property is low lying know where you can find sandbags for protection from flooding. Keep a camping/portable radio in your home and know where to tune for emergency broadcasts and other sources of official information.

Although Georgia can expect cool, more humid weather than normal, we should not be too concerned. We can still prepare though, especially as this one may be the largest El Niño event to date. So make preparations, and make sure to not be caught off guard by this massive storm to come.