La Niña's Cooling Effect Expected to Diminish in 2024 Amid Record-High Global Temperatures

Climate scientists predict diminished cooling impact of La Niña in 2024 due to high global temperatures, highlighting the persistent warming trend and pressing need for climate action.

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Quadri Adejumo
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La Niña's Cooling Effect Expected to Diminish in 2024 Amid Record-High Global Temperatures

La Niña's Cooling Effect Expected to Diminish in 2024 Amid Record-High Global Temperatures

Climate scientists predict that the La Niña weather pattern will have a diminished cooling impact in 2024 due to already high global temperatures. Despite the anticipated transition from El Niño to a neutral or La Niña phase, 2024 is expected to be almost as hot as the record-breaking year of 2023, which was driven in part by an El Niño event.

The reduced effect of La Niña can be attributed to the ongoing rise in global temperatures caused by greenhouse gas emissions. The atmosphere is still catching up with previously released greenhouse gases, and other factors such as abnormally hot ocean temperatures and reduced aerosols have also contributed to the record-breaking temperatures in 2023.

Why this matters: The diminished cooling effect of La Niña in 2024 highlights the persistent warming trend of global warming, with each decade being warmer than the previous one. Even small increases in temperature can have significant impacts on heat exposure, sea levels, and the intensity of storms, emphasizing the pressing need for action to mitigate climate change.

Climate scientists predict that the summer months of 2024 will be one of the hottest on record in New England, surpassing the temperatures of the previous year. The transition from El Niño to La Niña, which typically brings cooler temperatures, is expected to begin in June 2024 and peak in late summer, making August particularly susceptible to record high temperatures. This is due to the combination of warmer-than-average temperatures and the La Niña pattern, which can fuel higher temperatures in the eastern and northeastern United States.

Even with a potential La Niña cooling effect, 2024 is still expected to be warmer than 2016, which was previously the hottest year on record. "The long-term trend of global warming continues, with each decade being warmer than the previous one," climate scientists warn.

The Earth continues to experience a nearly three-decade-long trend of exceeding annual temperature averages, and even a 1-2 degree increase in temperature can have significant impacts, such as amplifying heat exposure, rising sea levels, and more intense storms. As global temperatures continue to climb, the diminished cooling effect of La Niña in 2024 serves as a sobering reminder of the pressing need for action to mitigate the impacts of climate change.

Key Takeaways

  • La Niña's cooling impact in 2024 will be diminished due to high global temperatures.
  • 2024 is expected to be almost as hot as the record-breaking year of 2023.
  • The diminished cooling effect of La Niña highlights the persistent warming trend of global warming.
  • Summer 2024 in New England is predicted to be one of the hottest on record.
  • Even with potential La Niña cooling, 2024 is expected to be warmer than the previous record of 2016.