Bureau of Meteorology declares La Niña in tropical Pacific

La Niña typically brings above average rainfall for eastern, northern and central parts of Australia. Image: Patrick Linehan

THE Australian Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) has declared a La Niña has formed in the tropical Pacific and is likely to persist until at least the end of January.

La Niña is part of a cycle known as the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO), a naturally occurring shift in ocean temperatures and weather patterns along the equator in the Pacific Ocean. During La Niña, waters in the central or eastern tropical Pacific are cooler than normal.

La Niña typically brings:

  • cloudiness and rainfall to become focused in the western tropical Pacific, leading to above average rainfall for eastern, northern and central parts of Australia
  • an increases in the chance of cooler than average daytime temperatures for large areas
  • an increase in the chance of more tropical cyclones than normal.

The last significant La Niña was 2010–12. This strong event saw large impacts across Australia, including Australia’s wettest two-year periods on record, and widespread flooding in many parts of Australia. This year’s event is not predicted to be as strong as the 2010-12 event and may be weaker than last year’s 2020-21 La Niña event.

The BOM says every La Niña has different impacts, as La Niña is not the only climate driver to affect Australia at any one time.

How does the La Niña affect the type of fishing you do?

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