Rare ‘triple-dip’ La Niña could bring another year of intense hurricanes and drought to the US

After two years of La Niña — El Niño’s cooler counterpart — the South Pacific may be facing a third potential appearance of La Niña in a row, which could bring more rainfall to an already-saturated eastern Australia and continue the trend of intense hurricane seasons along the east coast of the United States, and drought conditions in the country’s southwestern states.

This rare occurrence has “only happened twice since 1950,” Zoe Gillett, a researcher at the Australia Research Council Center of Excellence for Climate Extremes, told Live Science. But predicting La Niña is tricky, she warned; climatologists likely won’t know which way the winds will blow until September.

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