Thoughts of the great British summer of 2018 could soon become a distant memory as a stormy season followed by a harsh winter could be on the cards.

And all this will be due to a weather phenomenon at the other side of the world.

Weather experts are now predicting a 70% chance of an El Nino in the tropical Pacific which will have a major knock-on effect on the weather across the globe.

According to the Daily Express El Niño - which is linked to extreme weather events across the world - is triggered by a weakening of the easterly trade winds over the Pacific.

This causes sea surface temperatures off the coast of Peru to rise leading to a change in rainfall patterns over the equator while also disrupting winds in the tropics.

This change in winds can have a devastating knock-on effect on the weather across the world including extremes in temperature, flooding and drought.

In the UK it has been linked to prolonged periods of cold weather in winter and a more unsettled autumn storm season.

The US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) said there is a 70% of an event becoming established over the next four months … but it could happen even sooner.

It would be the sixth to strike in the past 15 years with previous events happening in 2002/03 2004/05, 2006/07, 2009/10 and 2014/15.

In a statement the NOAA said: “The forecaster consensus favours the onset of El Niño during the Northern Hemisphere (autumn), which would then continue through winter.”

Met Office El Niño charts show temperatures across the tropical Pacific have already risen almost half a degree celsius above normal.

The Met Office says El Niño tends to trigger colder conditions in winter across northern Europe and North America.

Parts can also become prone to higher rainfall while the warming trend has also been linked to a more active Atlantic hurricane season.

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