U.S. weather forecaster lowers chance of El Nino in autumn

Thu Aug 7, 2014 9:42am EDT

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(Reuters) - A U.S. weather forecaster scaled down its estimate for the chances of the El Nino weather phenomenon occurring during autumn and early winter in the Northern Hemisphere to 65 percent, from an earlier estimate of 80 percent.

The Climate Prediction Center (CPC), an agency of the National Weather Service, had made its earlier prediction in July.

"The consensus of forecasters expects El Nino to emerge

during August-October and to peak at weak strength during the late fall and early winter," the agency said in a monthly update on Thursday.

Last month, the CPC forecast a 70 percent chance for El Nino to occur in the summer.

"Over the last month, model forecasts have slightly delayed the El Nino onset," it said.

The agency downplayed the possibility of a strong El Nino, saying there was a higher chance of a weak to moderate event.

(Reporting by Marcy Nicholson; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe and Bernadette Baum)

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