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Official 90-day Outlooks are issued once each month near mid-month at 8:30am Eastern Time. Please consult the schedule of 30 & 90-day outlooks for exact release dates.

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HOME> Outlook Maps>Seasonal Forecast Discussion
 
Prognostic Discussion for Monthly Outlook 
NWS Climate Prediction Center College Park MD
830 AM EST Thu Jan 19 2023


30-DAY OUTLOOK DISCUSSION FOR FEBRUARY 2023

The February 2023 outlooks are issued against the backdrop of an ongoing La
Niña event and a weakening Madden Julian Oscillation (MJO) signal. The latest
Niño 3.4 weekly sea surface temperature (SST) departures stood at -0.7 degrees
Celsius. During the last two months, negative subsurface temperature anomalies
weakened, but weak anomalies continue to reside near the surface of the central
and eastern Pacific Ocean. Meanwhile, the magnitude of the Real-time
Multivariate (RMM) based MJO index has weakened and has become quasi-stationary
over the Western Hemisphere during the past week. However, there is general
agreement on the development of a well organized and potentially robust Indian
Ocean MJO event during the next two weeks. Farther to the north, across the
extratropics of the Northern Hemisphere, the Arctic Oscillation (AO) has been
predominantly negative during early January while the North Atlantic
Oscillation (NAO) has generally been positive. Meanwhile, the Pacific North
America (PNA) index has exhibited a weakening positive signal and has switched
to the negative phase during the past few days. Combined natural analog
composites derived from the recent evolution of equatorial Pacific, MJO, and
extratropical indices depict a 500-hPa flow pattern for the month of February
dominated by below normal heights across the Northern Plains. Anomalous ridging
is generally favored over the eastern North Pacific and across the southeastern
Contiguous United States (CONUS). Trends during the last 15 years favor above
normal heights across most of Alaska and the southeastern CONUS and below
normal heights over the Northern Plains during the month of February. Natural
analog composites, trends , dynamical guidance from the Copernicus Climate
Change Service (C3S), North American Multi-Model Ensemble (NMME), and the
Coupled Forecast System Version 2 (CFSv2), as well as input from the Climate
Prediction Center (CPC) Weeks 3 and 4 Outlooks form the basis of the February
outlooks. Antecedent conditions such as extratropical SSTs, sea ice extent, and
snow cover anomalies were also considered where appropriate.

Below normal temperatures are favored for the Alaska Panhandle, the Pacific
Northwest, and Northern California eastward to the Northern Plains, consistent
with dynamical model guidance from the CFSv2 and with anomalous troughing
depicted by natural analog composites and trends across the north-central
CONUS. Conversely, dynamical model guidance supports enhanced above normal
temperature probabilities across the Southeast, extending northward to southern
New England and westward to parts of the Southern Plains. The highest
probabilities of above normal temperatures (greater than 50 percent chances)
are indicated for the Florida Peninsula northward to coastal areas of South
Carolina, associated with anticipated anomalous ridging. Above normal
temperatures are also favored for northern and western Alaska, consistent with
dynamical model guidance and with current below normal sea ice extent, above
normal sea surface temperatures in ice-free regions, and recent trends . Equal
chances (EC) of above, near, and below normal temperatures are indicated across
the southwestern CONUS, Central Plains, much of the Great Lakes, parts of the
Northeast, and much of Mainland Alaska due to weak or conflicting dynamical and
statistical guidance.

Dynamical and statistical guidance are in good agreement in depicting increased
chances of above normal precipitation across the Ohio Valley, Great Lakes, and
much of the Middle and Upper Mississippi Valley, associated with an anticipated
enhanced baroclinic zone. Below normal precipitation is favored farther to the
south, across much of the Southeast, consistent with predicted mean anomalous
ridging. Increased chances of below normal precipitation extend westward along
much of the southern tier of the CONUS due to good agreement among NMME, CFSv2,
and C3S guidance. Conversely, a tilt toward above normal precipitation is
indicated along most of the Northern Tier of the CONUS where dynamical model
guidance is in general agreement. Above normal precipitation is also favored
across parts of western Mainland Alaska, where natural analog composites depict
enhanced moist southwesterly mid-level flow. EC of above, near, and below
normal precipitation are indicated from California eastward to much of the
Central and Southern Plains, parts of the Lower Mississippi Valley and
Southeast, coastal areas of the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast, and for much of
Alaska due to weak or conflicting dynamical and statistical guidance.

FORECASTER: Scott Handel

The climatic normals are based on conditions between 1991 and 2020, following
the World Meteorological Organization convention of using the most recent 3
complete decades as the climate reference period.  The probability anomalies
for temperature and precipitation based on these new normals better represent
shorter term climatic anomalies than the forecasts based on older normals.

An updated monthly outlook... for Feb will be issued on Tue January 31 2023

These outlooks are based on departures from the 1991-2020 base period.
$$

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