Winter is the season that we usually associate with cold, snowy landscapes, colds, snow sports. But it seems that little by little autumn is lengthening, that then a few days come in which low temperatures are registered, but that soon they pass and spring returns. Where, then, is that cold that made us shiver every time we went out into the street? It even seems that the cold waves we have now are not like before.
In this article we are going to review how winter 2017 has been, and how it could be in the next few years. When does winter come in? Let's see it.
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When does winter come in?
¿When winter starts? Winter is a season expected by many. After a very hot summer, it is often desired that the coldest months of the year arrive as soon as possible. Although they can bring us some other illnesses, such as the flu or colds, during this season we really want to go out to the streets or the countryside and enjoy winter sports.
But when does winter come in? Well it will depend on which hemisphere of the planet you are in 🙂. Thus, if you are in the northern hemisphere, the first official day is December 20 or 21, while if you are in the southern hemisphere, that day is June 20 or 21.
Winter 2017 Summary
According to data of the State Meteorological Agency (AEMET) the winter of 2017 had an overall warm and dry character. The average temperature was 8,5ºC, which is 0,6ºC more than the average for this season, taking 1981-2010 as the reference period. It has been the thirteenth warmest winter since 1965, and the fourth warmest since the 2015st century began, behind 16-2000, 01-2007 and 08-XNUMX.
They registered positive thermal anomalies around + 1ºC in Galicia, Catalonia, the Balearic Islands, the Valencian Community, as well as in the Cantabrian, Iberian and Central systems, southeast of Castilla-La Mancha and southwest of Castilla y León. In the rest of the country, the anomalies were negative, between 0 and -1ºC.
If we talk about the rainfall, it was generally dry, with an average rainfall 20% less than usual, which is 160mm. December and January were dry, but in areas of the southeast of the peninsula and the Balearic Islands it was very humid. In the Canary Islands, Extremadura and central Andalusia it was dry or very dry.
Winter 2016 summary
Winter 2016 started on December 22, 2015, and ended on March 20. It was an interesting few months, in which records were recorded, both rainfall and temperatures.
According to AEMET predictions, it was expected that in the northern half of the peninsula it would rain more than usual, and that in the rest of the country rainfall would remain within normal limits; In other words, if it does not usually rain in your area, this year there would not be big changes either. So it was.
Already on January 11, 2016 we were talking about a strong storm that was wreaking havoc across the north, especially in Pontevedra, Lugo and A Coruña. For days the rains did not stop falling, flooding streets and causing landslides, traffic cuts and even overflowing rivers. In this month the average rainfall was 90 mm, 41% more than normal (63mm).
In February we had another storm, with waves of up to 11,95km and winds that blew with great intensity, of up to 170km / h in the north. This time, the most affected regions were San Sebastián, in addition to Galicia. But the rains fell heavily across the north. This month was very wet overall, with an average rainfall of 88 mm (value 66% higher than the normal one, which is 53mm).
In March rainfall remained normal, except in the peninsular southeast quadrant and in the Balearic Islands, which were lower.
According to the AEMET, where it was going to rain more than expected, would be where the mercury in the thermometer would remain at normal values; instead, in the rest of the communities there would be a 55% probability that they would have a warmer winter than normal. Got it right
For the most part yes. In January the average temperature was 9.5ºC (2,3ºC more than normal, taking 1981-2010 as a reference period), thus becoming the warmest since 1961. In the northeastern half of the peninsula and in some parts of the south, the thermal anomaly was somewhat lower, at 1ºC.
In February, in the eastern half of the peninsula, the Balearic Islands and in some parts of the Canary archipelago, the temperature was between 0,5 and 2,5ºC higher (reference period: 1981-2010). In the rest of Spain, the values remained normal or slightly lower, especially in mountain areas of the Cantabrian Mountains, Sierra Morena, Sistema Central and Sistema Béltico. The maximum temperatures were 0,2ºC higher, and the minimum temperatures 1,2ºC higher than usual, so the diurnal thermal oscillation was lower to what it should be.
In March, temperatures continued to exceed normal values, especially in the eastern half of the country, including the Balearic archipelago, the southwest quadrant and in the Canary Islands. In the northwest quadrant there were no major changes.
What will winter 2018 be like? And the next ones?
Although today (July 11, 2017) it is still a bit early to know what next winter will be like, most likely it is the same or very similar to what we have passed, with an average temperature of 8-9ºC, but until the dates are getting closer and prediction models do not come out, it will be difficult to know with a little certainty.
Taking into account that, according to predictions, 2016 will be the warmest in history, even surpassing 2015, and that the El Niño phenomenon will help the mercury in thermometers continue to rise, the average temperature is likely to reach 1,14ºC. This means that we will have a winter that will be getting warmer and drier, especially in the Mediterranean region.
However, El Niño remains active between 8 and 10 months, so if its effects begin to be noticed in November 2015, it is likely (not certain) that in September 2016 we will go to a neutral phase. But this does not mean that record temperatures are not expected, since global warming is a phenomenon that will not stopUnless really effective measures are taken to reduce the emission of polluting gases into the atmosphere, neither will human beings stop polluting the planet from one day to the next. And even so, 10.000 years would still have to pass for the planet to recover.
So, maybe we will end up having a very dry Christmas together, and especially warm, under a blue sky which will have a higher concentration of greenhouse gases, like carbon dioxide.