What Is a Triple-Dip La Niña? And Why Might It Leave You Soaked?

Get out your umbrellas, gumboots, and scuba gear folks. Because we might be in for some more La Niña difficulties. That’s right, this weather event could be back for its third year in a row. This rare development is classified as a triple-dip La Niña. Yes, I know that a “triple-dip La Niña” sounds like a terrible Wet’n’Wild ride, but the ABC states that this is what these weather events are officially called, okay?

If the La Niña event were to continue into its third year, then it would bring more wet weather to some parts of Australia. However, it’s rather likely that the downpours that it’ll bring won’t be as strong as this year’s one or last year’s. The previous triple-dip La Niña happened from 1998 until 2001.

But how likely is it that a triple-dip actually takes place? Well, Brian Brettschneider, an Alaskan Ph.D. climatologist, believes the chances of it happening are steadily improving. On May 4, he tweeted out, “La Nina conditions not only continue but strengthened just a little for the most recent 3-month period.”

Closer to home, Chelsea Jarvis, a climate scientist that works for the University of Southern Queensland, put the odds of the La Niña continuing into its third year at 50/50. However, she does believe that it’ll more than likely stay here for the rest of winter. Jarvis told the ABC, “Usually, if a La Niña is going kind of through July and August, it’ll continue through spring and into summer.”

If the La Niña was to come back for 2023, it would be bad for some of our Aussie farmers on the east coast. For instance, SBS reported that lots of rain can make our sugarcane less potent and delay it from getting harvested. Moreover, in 2021, New South Wales farmers lost so much grain and income due to being flooded.

Read more stories from The Latch and subscribe to our email newsletter.