January 10, 2019 / 5:12 AM / 3 months ago

Japan weather bureau sees 80 percent chance of El Nino continuing into spring

TOKYO (Reuters) - Japan’s weather bureau said on Thursday the El Nino weather pattern appears to be continuing and that there was an 80 percent chance it would stretch into the northern hemisphere spring.

A U.S. government weather forecaster last month projected a 90 percent chance of the El Nino weather pattern emerging during the northern hemisphere winter 2018-19, with a 60 percent chance of continuing through spring this year.

The last El Nino, a warming of ocean surface temperatures in the eastern and central Pacific that typically happens every few years, occurred around 2015/2016 and caused weather-related crop damage, fires and flash floods.

Reporting by Yuka Obayashi; Editing by Himani Sarkar

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