EL NIÑO/SOUTHERN OSCILLATION (ENSO) DIAGNOSTIC DISCUSSION (CLIMATE PREDICTION CENTER/NCEP/NWS and the International Research Institute for Climate and Society)

EL NIÑO/SOUTHERN OSCILLATION (ENSO) DIAGNOSTIC DISCUSSION (CLIMATE PREDICTION CENTER/NCEP/NWS and the International Research Institute for Climate and Society)

6

Published

6 July 2012
Press Release Number:
N/A

ENSO Alert System Status: El Niño Watch

During June 2012, ENSO-neutral continued as reflected in both the oceanic and atmospheric anomalies. However, positive equatorial Pacific sea surface temperature (SST) anomalies have grown, exceeding +0.5°C across the eastern Pacific Ocean by the end of June (Fig. 1). SST anomalies increase moving from the westernmost Niño 4 region to the Niño 1+2 region adjacent to South America, which remained near +1.5°C during the month (Fig. 2). The oceanic heat content anomalies (average temperature in the upper 300m of the ocean) increased during June (Fig. 3), as above-average sub-surface temperatures became more entrenched in the equatorial Pacific (Fig. 4). This warming was consistent with a weakening of the low-level trade winds across the east-central equatorial Pacific, along with a weakening of the persistent pattern of enhanced convection near Papua New Guinea (Fig. 5). The observations are consistent with ENSO-neutral, but reflect a likely progression towards El Niño. >> More

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