According to federal forecasters, the La Nina climate pattern will return this fall and last through 2021-22. La Nina, a natural cycle that sees cooler-than-average ocean water in the central Pacific Ocean, is one of the major drivers of weather around the U.S.A. and the world, particularly in the late fall, winter, and early spring.

The Climate Prediction Center, part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), released Thursday’s forecast, declaring that there will be a “La Nina Watch” in September-November.

What does this all mean for our weather?

According to the Climate Prediction Center, La Nina can have an impact on the Atlantic hurricane season. It makes atmospheric conditions more favorable for tropical storms or hurricanes to form in Atlantic Ocean and less favorable in eastern Pacific Ocean.

The Atlantic hurricane season usually peak in August, September, and October.

National Hurricane Center said. If 2021 is any indication, it could be an active hurricane year. Through July 1, five named storms have formed in the Atlantic, breaking the previous record set last year of four, according to the National Hurricane Center.

La Nina can also be a factor in reducing rainfall across the Southwest. This is not good news for an area that has been plagued by excessive heat, drought, and wildfires this year.

According to the prediction center, this year’s La Nina (translated into Spanish as “little girl”) will likely persist throughout winter. This is the opposite of El Nino (little guy), which has warmer-than-average ocean water in the tropical Pacific Ocean.

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Officially, the entire natural climate cycle is known as the El Nino-South Oscillation (or ENSO), a dance of warmer and colder seawater in central Pacific Ocean.

Forecasters say ENSO-neutral conditions (sometimes called “La Nada”) are expected to continue throughout the summer, until La Nina is over.