What is El Nino?
El Nino is a disturbance of the ocean atmosphere system in the Tropical Pacific having major consequences for the weather and climate around the world. It happens every two to seven years and normally lasts about eight to ten months. The longest El Nino warming was about five years.
What causes El Nino?
Trade winds blow west towards the
Pacific, normally and push warm surface water away from the coast of
Winter of 1997-1998
One really bad case was of El Nino was the winter of 1997-1998. The conditions from El Nino had continued since June in 1997 and lasted throughout that winter. The southern parts of the country had a very wet climate than usual. In the north there was a warmer climate. That winter from December 1997 to February 1998 was the second warmest and seventh wettest winter since 1895. More severe weather cases included flooding in the southeast and California, ice storms in the northeast, and tornados in Florida.
During this event the economy lost a large amount of money. Agriculture lost about $700 million, the amount lost in sales was about $80 million, the tourist industry lost about $200 million, the state insistence cost was $150 million, the Federal Government relief was $400 million, and the property losses were about $2.8 billion.