The infamous El Niño weather pattern currently developing is going to be the most powerful in the 65 years in which records have been kept, leading Al-Jazeera to term it the “strongest ever”:
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The developing El Nino is stronger than the last major event of its type in 1997.
According to the US National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the UK Met Office, this El Nino is shaping up to be the strongest since records began in 1950.
El Nino is a natural phenomenon which occurs every two to seven years and lasts between six and 18 months.
It manifests as a warming of the surface waters of the eastern equatorial Pacific Ocean. The current El Nino is so strong that in some areas sea surface temperatures (SSTs) are more than 2 degrees Celsius above the long-term average.
Aside from the devastating effect that El Nino has on the Peruvian fishing industry, the real significance lies in the change in weather patterns that it produces around the globe.