HAVANA, March 30 (EFE) Cuban meteorologists predict El Niño could return in 2017, believing that the presence of El Niño Coastal in Peru and Ecuador is an indication of the “unusual” return of thisclimatic anomaly, which historically Occurs at intervals of two to seven years.
The prediction models agree that the localized whipping of El Niño Costero can mean an early return of El Niño, said the researcher of the Climate Center of the Cuban Meteorology Institute, Ramon Perez, to the Cuban state newspaper Granma.
El Niño / Southern Oscillation (ENSO), an anomalous increase in sea temperature in the central and eastern coastal areas of the Pacific to South America, is capable of altering global climatic conditions and form extreme droughts to intense rains in different parts of the world.
Cuban scientists warn that an ENSO event this year would be “an unusual event,” because the last – considered “very strong” – took place between 2015 and 2016.
On that occasion, El Niño affected Cuba, where it caused damage to agriculture, including the loss of some 90,000 tonnes of rice in 2015 due to the water shortage .
The current scourge of El Niño Costero has been seen most strongly in Peru, which already reports 91 deaths and thousands of people affected by the floods, mainly concentrated in the northern region of that country.
The economic damages in the South American nation could cause a fall of 0.5% of its Gross Domestic Product in 2017 or generate a collapse of several percentage points in the worst case, according to analysts.
Ecuador has also been affected by the rains and floods, but the damage has been reduced by the appropriate preventive measures implemented.