2012 CWCB Statewide Drought Conference recap: Colorado’s weather will become more volatile and unpredictable

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Here’s and in-depth look back at this week’s conference from Bobby Magill writing for the Fort Collins Coloradoan. Click through and read the whole article. Here’s an excerpt:

…as the El Nino sputters in the Pacific Ocean, hardly guaranteeing a dramatically better snow season than the dry winter that ushered in this year’s drought, Coloradans are asking deeper questions about what Colorado might look like if extended drought becomes a disastrous reality…

Little is certain about that future, except that most scientists and climate watchers agree that Colorado’s weather will become more volatile and unpredictable…

“Colorado is at a transition point where some seasons are wet with El Nino and some are dry,” said National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration climatologist Klaus Wolter.

Northern Colorado usually experiences a wet fall and spring but dry winter during an El Nino year. Wolter said he’s still refining his forecast for the upcoming snow season, but it doesn’t look promising. “In the winter, if you want powder, pick a La Nina year,” he said.

And yet, last year’s dry winter came at the height of a strong La Nina. Most drought years come after a two-year La Nina.

“I share that attitude — the high country may not fare so well (this winter),” said Colorado State Climatologist Nolan Doesken.

More CWCB coverage here.

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