EuroTempest has issued its third assessment of seasonal weather forecasts and climate signals for the winter period, broken down by the main regions across Europe where differences can be detected. The summary assessment covers the next three months: December, January and February (DJF) and includes results from an analysis of climate drivers from previous years. The analysis has looked at periods, termed analogue years, when climate signals have shown a similar pattern to those exhibited currently.

There are indications, particularly from seasonal forecast models, of an enhanced likelihood of wetter than average conditions across Europe for December, January, and February as a whole. In addition, both climate models and climate signals suggest there is an increased potential for this season to be colder than recent years. However, climate signals in particular suggest the likelihood of variability and change through the season: periods of both wet and windy weather and cold, dry and calm weather are likely at different times throughout the three-month period.

  • Storms: Current climate signals and historical analogues do not provide any particularly strong or unambiguous indications regarding the likelihood of significant windstorm activity. There is little evidence to suggest that a particularly active season is any more likely than normal.
  • Precipitation: Seasonal forecast models are generally consistent in suggesting an increased likelihood of above average precipitation across Europe for the three-month period as a whole, although there is less consistency for southern Europe. Climate signals suggest an increasing potential for drier conditions across northern Europe and Scandinavia from early next year.
  • Temperature: Temperatures are still likely to be warmer than the long-term climatological average across Europe; however, there are indications from seasonal forecast models that temperatures could be cooler than they have been in recent winters. This is reasonably consistent with the indication from some climate signals and historical analogues that colder conditions (than in recent winters) could become more likely from the end of the year.
  • Westerly winds: There is no clear consensus between seasonal forecast models on the likely strength of the westerly winds across Europe, although more of them tend to suggest an increased likelihood of stronger winds than do the opposite. Climate signals suggest that some reduction in the strength of westerly winds across northern Europe and Scandinavia is possible from early next year.

There is an increasing likelihood of spells of colder, calmer and drier weather across northern Europe and Scandinavia into the New Year, although spells of wetter, milder and windier weather may well continue for a time in early January and cannot be ruled out further into the year. The opposite is true of southern Europe, where there is a greater potential for warmer, wetter and potentially stormier conditions than is typical.

Read the full report here.

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