WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y. -- A local weatherman and author of a new children's book says this coming winter will be much warmer than usual because of El Nino.
"This phenomena happens every five to seven years. Warm air forms above the Pacific Ocean, causing a jet stream to travel across the country and change normal weather patterns for this time of year," says Joe Rao , a meteorologist with News 12 Westchester. "The jet stream diverts the cold weather north of Canada."
Rao, a Putnam County resident, believes the impact of this year's El Nino is responsible for the somewhat odd weather that has occurred this fall; beside the warmer than usual temperatures, regional cities like Buffalo and Syracuse have, so far, received no significant snowfall.
The changes will impact at least one local industry, Rao says.
"As the cold night time temperatures, which usually allow ski areas to make snow, will be close to impossible this year due to the warmer temperatures," Rao says. "Skiing on the east coast will be affected by this phenomenon."
Rao, whose new children's book is called "The Cool Story Behind Snow," says the weather should not be mistaken for climate change.
"Nature always balances the checkbook and brings back the moisture necessary in one single winter," he says.