El Niño's effect on Central Oregon's dry desert farmers could be mild or wild

Posted by OregonLive on 07/19/2015

In nearly 30 years of desert farming at the Big Falls Ranch north of Redmond, Rex Barber Jr. has seen dry years and wet years.

"I have yet to see an average year,'' Barber said. "The only thing certain about weather is that it's going to change."

After one of the warmest, snow-free winters in history in the Cascade mountains and a stubborn, growing drought, another change looms in the Pacific Ocean's warming waters.

Forecasters say one of the strongest El Nino's in history is brewing up global climate disruptions that could throw Oregon agriculture out of whack, limiting snowpack in back-to-back years and cutting crop yields.


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