The unusual amount of rainfall we have been having can be attribute to El Nino which is a climate pattern that began this year. It is associated with floods, droughts, and other weather disturbances depending on the region of the world. The temperature of the sea in the central and eastern Pacific region is above average which is bringing increased moisture across North America. The unusually warm sea surface temperatures in the western Pacific move east. That changes the heating pattern of the atmosphere, which in turn pulls the Pacific jet stream farther south. The interesting thing is that there will be below-average snowfall and above average temperatures through the central northern region of the US, excluding New England, while below-average temperatures are estimated for the south-central/eastern US.
I read letters to the editor almost every day saying that this has been a cold winter which is evidence that global warming isn't occurring. The cyclical pattern of El Nino has occurred for many years so even though there are colder temperatures in the South and more snowfall, the long-term trend in temperature indicates warming around the globe. However, it has been hypothesized that warmer global sea surface temperatures can enhance El Nino. El Niños have been more frequent and intense in recent decades. There have been relatively more frequent and persistent El Niño episodes rather than the cool episodes called La Niñas. This behavior is highly unusual in the last 130 years. This is the strongest El Nino since the winter of 1997-98.
Anyway, when you are digging out this weekend or dodging a deluge, remember that this is a weather phenomenon that is cyclical. Plus, it helps dampen the threat of hurricanes that are much more prevalent during La Nina years.
My glass is half full today. I heard the spring peepers making their sweet sounds of spring last night as I drove home. The freshwater wetland near the house is filled to the brim. The cypress trees, the old snapping turtle, the bull frogs, and the snakes are enjoying having the wetland filled up.
All the wetlands and their inhabitants in this state are rejoicing because the state Supreme Court dealt a smashing blow Monday to developers who have tried for years to overturn state rules that safeguard coastal freshwater wetlands from unchecked development. If this had not been done, potentially hundreds of thousands of acres of freshwater wetlands would have been open for development without state oversight. Chalk up a big one for the snapping turtles, frogs and friends.
Hope that you are having a day of optimism too. If you look closely, there might be something right there in front of you that makes your heart sing.