Friday December 8th, 2023 1:09AM

State Climatologist: Fall will be warmer, drier than usual

By Mitch Clarke Director of Special Projects

It wasn't our imagination.

This summer was very wet and cooler than normal, though it did have plenty of hot, humid days. And the fall may well be the opposite of summer. That's the opinion of State Climatologist Bill Murphey.

He said Wednesday, the first day of fall, that he expects Georgia to see warmer-than-normal temperatures and drier-than-normal rainfall, both the result of a La Nina in the Pacific Ocean.

"There is a La Nina watch to continue through the winter," Murphey said. "As far as temperatures go, I would say above normal temperatures statewide, but that doesn't mean we can't get some shots of cold air coming down the pike."

A La Nina pattern during the winters often brings cold and snow to the Northwest U.S., but it usually means drier and warmer temperatures across much of the South, according to information on the NOAA Climate Prediction Center website.

Murphey made his comments during an appearance Wednesday on WDUN's "Newsroom."

He said La Nina patterns can bring drought conditions to Georgia, particularly south and middle Georgia, though he said he doesn't expect widespread drought this fall and winter.

"It's something we'll have to keep an eye on for the winter months as we head into January and February," he said. "All the reservoirs are doing good. Steam flows are doing good. There aren't any major impacts across the state."

As for the summer, Murphey's said it was Gainesville's 19th wettest summer on record, with 18.77 inches recorded from June through August.

And September has also been wet. He said Gainesville has received 5.9 inches this month, more than three inches more than the 2.7-inch average.


  • Associated Categories: Homepage, Local/State News
  • Associated Tags: Drought, summer weather, state climatologist, La Nina, falll weather
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