El Nino rain predictions baffling analysts

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While there is a strong correlation between El Nino and hotter-than-normal summers, the precipitation outlook is uncertain. Some experts suggest above-normal temperatures but slightly drier conditions, while others believe the region will experience normal to cooler-than-normal temperatures. If a super-El Nino develops, it could lead to an extended growing season for Western Canada and reduce the risk of frost damage. Analog years, such as 1951, 1997, 2006, and 2015, were examined, with three of them showing cooler-than-normal temperatures in the U.S. corn belt, which could benefit corn and soybean yields. The official declaration of El Nino is pending, as cool ocean temperatures off the coast of California are currently keeping it at bay. However, it is expected to become pronounced in June. The moisture outlook for the Midwest is encouraging based on the analog years, and the western half of the country has already seen improvements in drought conditions. The fall is expected to bring more moisture to the U.S. Southern Plains region, which has been experiencing prolonged drought, but it may not completely eliminate the drought without sustained rainfall.

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