NEW YORK A U.S. government weather forecaster on Thursday said weak La Niña conditions were present but favored to dissipate in the coming months.
The National Weather Service's Climate Prediction Center said in a monthly forecast that conditions were likely to transition back to neutral during January through March.
The report said La Niña would likely bring above-average temperatures and below-median precipitation across much of the southern tier of the United States and the reverse in the northern tier.
Typically less damaging than El Niño, La Niña is characterized by unusually cold ocean temperatures in the equatorial Pacific Ocean and tends to occur unpredictably every two to seven years. Severe occurrences have been linked to floods and droughts.
(Reporting by Chris Prentice; Editing by Lisa Von Ahn)