Warm Late Fall and Early Winter Across Most of Northern U.S.
Winter Natural Gas Demand Expected to be 10% Lower Than Last Year
WSI (Weather Services International) has issued their latest seasonal forecast for the October-December period. The forecast indicates below-normal temperatures across the southern Plains into the Southwest, with above-normal temperatures expected across the eastern and northern U.S. The WSI seasonal outlooks reference a standard 30-year normal (1981-2010).
According to WSI Chief Meteorologist Dr. Todd Crawford, “The current El Nino event rivals the 1997 event as the strongest in at least 65 years. As we go deeper into fall and early winter, the tropical forcing focused in the eastern equatorial Pacific should drive warmer-than-normal temperatures across much of the northern U.S., as the polar jet stream weakens and lifts northward. Meanwhile, the super-charged subtropical jet stream will provide increased storminess across the southern U.S. and potentially up the East Coast as we head into early winter.
Our first guess at November-March gas-weighted heating degree days (GWHDD) is 3600, which represents 10% less demand than last winter and more like the levels observed during the 2005-06 and 2006-07 winters. In the nearer term, the pattern heading into early October resembles, to a certain extent, that of historically warm Octobers across the eastern U.S. However, the evolving sub-seasonal signal should eventually support a transition to a colder pattern by late October.”
In October, WSI sees the monthly breakdown as:
Northeast* –Warmer than normal
Southeast* – Warmer than normal
North Central * – Warmer than normal
South Central* – Cooler than normal
Northwest* –Warmer than normal
Southwest* –Cooler than normal