Along with the fast-developing, powerful El Nino, several persistent warm water blobs (and their little buddy The Ridge) have appeared in the Pacific. No one really know if they will work together to produce even more rain, cancel each other out, or something else. These are highly unusual weather conditions with lots of moving variables. We will know the answer within a few months
And an emerging question is how El Nino and the blobs might interact to influence the coming winter with the western drought, now in its fourth year, heightening the stakes.
“What would the blobs do with no El Nino and what would El Nino do with no blobs and what happens when we have the blobs and an El Nino,” Redmond asks. “We’ve had very few cases in the past when we had both of these things going on at the same time.
“They could accentuate each other or subtract from each other. They could multiply each other or they might cancel each other. The jury is out.”
Researchers say there’s no precedent for something like the Ridiculously Resilient Ridge and the Blob interacting with an El Niño.
It’s not clear which one will win out, but here are some scenarios.