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ENSO Forecast Discussion

ENSO and SST Model Forecasts

Canonical Correlation Model
Nino 3.4 Region: Historical  F1
Nino 3.4 Region: 0-4 Season  F2

NCEP Coupled Model
Eq. Pac. SST & Anomalies  F3
Nino 3 & Nino 3.4 Region  F4

NCEP Markov Model
Eq. Pac. SST & Anomalies  F5
Nino 3.4 Region  F6

LDEO Model
Eq. Pac. SST & Wind Stress Anoms  F7
Nino 3 Region  F8

Linear Inverse Modeling
Global Tropical SST Anomalies  F9
Nino 3.4 Region: Historical  F10

Scripps/MPI Hybrid Coupled Model
Eq. Pac. SST & Anomalies  F11

All Nino Regions & SOI  F12

IRI Compilation of Forecasts
Nino3.4 Region  F13

Forecast Forum


Forecast Forum

The CPC and the contributors to the Forecast Forum caution potential users of this predictive information that they can expect only modest skill.

ENSO Alert System Status: El Niņo Advisory      


            El Niņo is expected to strengthen and last through the Northern Hemisphere Winter 2009-2010.


A weak El Niņo continued during September 2009, as sea surface temperature (SST) anomalies remained nearly unchanged across much of the equatorial Pacific Ocean (Fig. T9). Since the transition to El Niņo conditions during June, the monthly values of the Niņo-3.4 index have remained between +0.6°C and +0.9°C (Table T2).  Subsurface oceanic heat content (average temperatures in the upper 300m of the ocean) anomalies continued to reflect a deep layer of anomalous warmth between the ocean surface and the thermocline, particularly in the central and east-central Pacific (Fig. T17).  The pattern of tropical convection also remained consistent with El Niņo, with enhanced convection over the west-central Pacific and suppressed convection over Indonesia (Fig. T25).  In addition, two westerly wind bursts were observed over the western equatorial Pacific, the first occurring early in the month and the second occurring near the end of the month (Fig. T13).  These oceanic and atmospheric anomalies reflect an ongoing weak El Niņo. 

A majority of the model forecasts for the Niņo-3.4 SST index (Figs. F1-F13) suggest that El Niņo will reach at least moderate strength during the Northern Hemisphere fall (3-month Niņo-3.4 SST index of +1.0°C or greater).  Many model forecasts even suggest a strong El Niņo (3-month Niņo-3.4 SST index in excess of +1.5°C) during the fall and winter, but in recent months some models, including the NCEP CFS , have over-predicted the degree of warming observed so far in the Niņo-3.4 region.  Based on the model forecasts, the seasonality of El Niņo, and the continuation of westerly wind bursts, El Niņo is expected to strengthen and most likely peak at moderate strength. 

Weekly updates of oceanic and atmospheric conditions are available on the Climate Prediction Center homepage (El Niņo/La Niņa Current Conditions and Expert Discussions).

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Page Last Modified: October 2009
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