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El Nino Research Papers

El Nino research papers discuss and explicate the weather phenomena that occurs over the Pacific Ocean. Paper Masters will custom write a research paper on El Nino and tie it into any subject area that has to do with the environment.

Every four to seven years, there is an abnormal warming in the tropical Pacific that has been referred to as El Nino.  The effects of El Nino are not confined to this location, however.  Instead, it creates a ripple effect that impacts the earth’s atmosphere and consequently influences weather around much of the world.  The largest El Nino, occurring between 1992 and 1993, changed the jet stream patterns, with resulting floods and droughts that caused more than $13 billion dollars in damages and killed thousands of people worldwide.

El Nino

El Nino and Weather Forecasts

Weather forecasters are especially troubled by El Nino.  Because conditions in the atmosphere directly affect weather, it is difficult to make accurate forecasts when El Nino is in full force.  This phenomenon heats up the atmosphere, producing floods in some areas and droughts in others.

Essentially, El Nino describes a complex interaction between the Pacific Ocean and the atmosphere.  When an occurrence of El Nino develops, there is a large area of warm surface water that expands toward the east.  This creates a shift in the atmospheric pressure.  Thus, these changes in the atmosphere produce odd weather patterns.

Understanding El Nino

Consequently, eighteen countries have joined together in attempting to understand El Nino.  Their goal in to understand how El Nino and the atmosphere interact to change weather conditions.  This project, the Tropical Ocean Global Atmosphere (TOGA), builds computer models to try to predict:

...when the tropical Pacific will swing toward warm or cool temperatures.  Nature still has the upper hand, however, having fooled almost all of them last year [1992] and perhaps again this year with a subtle El Nino that was difficult to anticipate.

Actually, TOGA has begun experiencing some success at predicting these Pacific events twelve to eighteen months ahead of time.

Basically, the effect of El Nino is that it creates unpredictable weather that is somewhat bizarre. While flooding and drought are typically the most devastating consequences, other weather events such as tornadoes and high tides cause damage as well.

The effects of El Nino can be far reaching. 

  • When El Nino caused a warm winter for North America, gasoline prices hit a record low.
  • In 1998, El Nino caused heavy flooding in the east African countries of Kenya and Somalia. 
  • There were very few areas of dry land for a long period of time. 
  • Animals began dying, and many of the people in this area began to suffer from temporary blindness and uncontrollable bleeding. 
  • Due to the standing water, the prevalence of mosquitoes soared. 
  • A mosquito-born virus, Rift Valley fever infected thousands.

An understanding of El Nino is vital if meteorologists are to make accurate weather forecasts.  The ability to make such predictions would enable individuals and nations to plan for unusual weather events rather than being the victims of them.

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