Strong El Nino Blamed for Dry Winter Forecast

"Tropical Depression 6E, which formed in the Eastern Pacific over the weekend, was captured in an image at 7 p.m. Sunday by the GOES-15 geostationary satellite. Hawaii is in the upper left corner of the image. Tropical cyclone activity usually increases in El Nino years such as 2015." Credit - Honolulu Star-Advertiser

"Tropical Depression 6E, which formed in the Eastern Pacific over the weekend, was captured in an image at 7 p.m. Sunday by the GOES-15 geostationary satellite. Hawaii is in the upper left corner of the image. Tropical cyclone activity usually increases in El Nino years such as 2015." Credit - Honolulu Star-Advertiser

A strong El Nino can mean a variety of things for Hawaii: more storms, a dry winter, and potential for landslides (especially in areas affected by wildfire).

From the Source:

"'We're not just talking about leeward drought,' said Kevin Kodama, a hydrologist with the National Weather Service office in Hono­lulu. 'It will probably manifest itself in windward areas as well. The expectation is that there will be pretty significant drought.'

"While there is a greater chance of storms during the June-through-November hurricane season, El Nino will likely steer most rain in the winter-to-spring rainy season away from the islands.

For farmers, ranchers and homeowners who like to keep their lawns green, a strong El Nino could mean cutbacks next year.

'The chance of drought goes up, the stronger the El Nino is,' Kodama said."

"Storms could, however, also cause landslides in areas recently hit by wildfires."