La Niña could push New York snowbirds to say adiós to the city sooner than usual, as frosty conditions and higher snowfall are expected to hit the region in November.
The atmospheric and oceanic weather phenomenon which brings colder weather to the eastern Pacific Ocean returned this month, and it will affect New York, forecasters said.
“These can have major effects into where there’s the heaviest rainfall or snowfall, where temperatures are warmer or colder than average,” Accuweather meteorologist Max Gawryla explained.
The effects of La Niña could also be intensified by an expected weakening of the polar vortex next month, which would allow more air to escape from the Arctic — despite the event’s harmless-sounding name, Gawryla said.
“Right now we might be seeing an early set up for winter,” the meteorologist predicted.
“Probably going to be seeing temperatures across the Northeast being a little bit colder than average … There is usually a decent chance for Nor’easters to form with that, so it wouldn’t be out of the question to see some sort of early season snowstorm or early-season winter conditions.”
The five boroughs are expected to get 32 inches of snow this year – 2 inches more than normal, Accuweather forecasters said. That total would remain below last year’s 39-inch accumulation in Central Park.
La Niña is a climate pattern that occurs anywhere from every few months to every few years. This La Niña event is expected to be moderate and not out of the ordinary, according to experts. Still, La Niña — and its counterpart El Niño, which warms up the Pacific — can have a measurable effect on North America’s weather.
“These sorts of things do a pretty big deal in terms of playing with where highs and lows are able to set up,” Gawryla said.