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Kenai could see warmer winter

Sabine Poux

Forecasters from the National Weather Service Alaska Region predict that the Kenai area will experience above-normal temperatures, and normal or below-normal precipitation, this winter. Much of Alaska is forecasted to expect the same.

Brian Brettschnieder, physical and climate scientist with the National Weather Service in Anchorage, says this prediction was determined by climate trends.

“If you know nothing else about the climate of Alaska, your default answer should always be 'it’s going to be warmer than normal,'" he said. "The planet’s warming, Alaska is warming, and that’s a very strong trend that we see.” 

It’s also an El Niño pattern year, which Brettschnieder says favors drier and warmer conditions. While these conditions are more likely, they’re not guaranteed.

“Warm and less snow is the most likely outcome, but all outcomes are still possible,” Brettschnieder said.  

Although the National Weather Service can’t predict exact temperatures or snowfall amounts this far out, the forecast provides guidance on what to expect. You can speak to an Alaska-based forecaster by calling the National Weather Service office in Anchorage.

Hunter Morrison is a news reporter at KDLL