A neutral ENSO phase is still present across the Equatorial Pacific Ocean. However, some slight warming of sea-surface temperatures has occurred across parts of the Pacific Ocean over the past month. This could be the first sign that a transition to an El Nino phase is slowly beginning.
The latest long-range climate models continue to show a 50 percent chance of El Nino development by this fall and a 65 percent chance of El Nino development by this winter.
As for the August temperature outlook, slightly above normal temperatures are projected across portions of the Pacific Northwest, Great Basin, Intermountain West, and northern Rockies with a surplus of monthly cooling degree days of between 30 and 60 expected across these regions of the country.
Parts of the Southeast may also see slightly warmer than normal conditions with higher than average cooling degree day totals by between 20 and 40 forecast. These parts of the United States will also likely see somewhat higher energy costs with respect to cooling during the month of August. Much of the rest of the United States will likely see temperatures that on a whole average closer to normal in August. Would not be surprised if parts of the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic end up slightly warmer than normal as well, but the threat for the NAO (North Atlantic Oscillation) to become negative over the next month is still a possibility and this could negate the warmer outcome in August.