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Climate Prediction Center

Climate Diagnostics Bulletin
Climate Diagnostics Bulletin - Home Climate Diagnostics Bulletin - Forecast Climate Diagnostics Bulletin - Extratropics


  Tropical Highlights

  Table of Atmospheric Indices  (Table 1)

  Table of Oceanic Indices  (Table 2)

  Time Series

  Time-Longitude Sections

  Mean & Anomaly Fields

  Appendix 1: Outside Contributions

Tropical Highlights


Forecast Forum

La Niņa continued during January 2009, as negative sea surface temperature (SST) anomalies strengthened across the central and east-central equatorial Pacific Ocean (Fig. T18).  The latest monthly SST index was -1.0°C in the Niņo-3.4 region, and -0.7°C in the Niņo-4 region (Table T2).

The oceanic thermocline along the equator, measured by the depth of the 20°C isotherm, remained shallower than average across the eastern half of the equatorial Pacific during January in response to anomalously strong oceanic upwelling (Figs. T15, T16). Consistent with these conditions, subsurface temperatures in the region reached 4-7oC below average at thermocline depth (Fig. T17).

Enhanced low-level easterly winds and upper-level westerly winds were present across the equatorial Pacific Ocean during January (Figs. T20, T21). These conditions continued to be associated with enhanced oceanic upwelling, and also with suppressed convection over the central equatorial Pacific Ocean and enhanced convection across Indonesia (Fig. T25). This combination of oceanic and atmospheric conditions reflects a continuation of La Niņa.

For the latest status of the ENSO cycle see the ENSO Diagnostic Discussion at:

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