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Gerry Lopez status
Re: El Niņo
11/05/09 07:48 AM
Latest from the CPC- lookin good:
EL NIŅO/SOUTHERN OSCILLATION (ENSO)
CLIMATE PREDICTION CENTER/NCEP/NWS
5 November 2009
ENSO Alert System Status: El Niņo Advisory
Synopsis: El Niņo is expected to continue strengthening and last through at least the Northern
Hemisphere winter 2009-2010.
During October 2009, sea surface temperature (SST) anomalies increased across the central and
eastern equatorial Pacific Ocean (Figs. 1 & 2). The Niņo-3.4 index increased nearly a degree with the
most recent weekly value at +1.5°C (Fig. 2). Above-average subsurface temperature anomalies increased
across a large region of the central and east-central Pacific, with anomalies ranging between +1 to +5°C
by the end of the month (Fig. 3). Consistent with this warming, subsurface oceanic heat content
anomalies (average departures in the upper 300m of the ocean, Fig. 4) also increased during the month.
In addition, low-level westerly and upper-level easterly wind anomalies strengthened over much of the
equatorial Pacific. The pattern of tropical convection also remained consistent with El Niņo, with
enhanced convection over the west-central Pacific and suppressed convection over Indonesia.
Collectively, these oceanic and atmospheric anomalies reflect a strengthening El Niņo.
There continues to be disagreement among the models on the eventual strength of El Niņo, but
the majority indicate that the three-month average Niņo-3.4 SST index value will range between +1.0°C
and +1.5°C during the Northern Hemisphere winter (Fig. 5). Consistent with the historical evolution of
El Niņo, a peak in SST anomalies is expected sometime during November-January. At this time, there is
a high degree of uncertainty over how long this event will persist. Most of the models suggest that this
event will last through March-May 2010, although the most likely outcome is that El Niņo will peak at
least at moderate strength (3-month Niņo-3.4 SST index of +1.0°C or greater) and last through at least the
Northern Hemisphere winter 2009-10.
Expected El Niņo impacts during November 2009-January 2010 include enhanced precipitation
over the central tropical Pacific Ocean and a continuation of drier-than-average conditions over Indonesia.
For the contiguous United States, potential impacts include above-average precipitation for Florida,
central and eastern Texas, and California, with below-average precipitation for parts of the Pacific
Northwest. Above-average temperatures and below-average snowfall is most likely for the Northern
Rockies, Northern Plains, and Upper Midwest, while below-average temperatures are expected for the
This discussion is a consolidated effort of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
(NOAA), NOAAs National Weather Service, and their funded institutions. Oceanic and atmospheric
conditions are updated weekly on the Climate Prediction Center web site (El Niņo/La Niņa Current
Conditions and Expert Discussions). Forecasts for the evolution of El Niņo/La Niņa are updated
monthly in the Forecast Forum section of CPC's Climate Diagnostics Bulletin. The next ENSO
Diagnostics Discussion is scheduled for 10 December 2009. To receive an e-mail notification when the
monthly ENSO Diagnostic Discussions are released, please send an e-mail message to: ncep.list.ensoupdate@
Climate Prediction Center
National Centers for Environmental Prediction
NOAA/National Weather Service
Camp Springs, MD 20746-4304
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