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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

MARCH 2008

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.


            La Niņa is expected to continue for the next 3 months.    


La Nina declined to moderate-strength during March 2008 as negative sea surface temperature (SST) anomalies weakened across the central and east-central equatorial Pacific.  March SSTs were more than 1.0°C below average in areas between 160°E and 110°W (Fig. T18).  All of the Niņo indices warmed during the month (Table T2), with only the westernmost Niņo-4 and Niņo-3.4 regions having values nearly 1.0°C below average.  Above-average SSTs remained restricted to the far eastern equatorial Pacific in association with a significant warming trend that began in mid-December. In the central Pacific, the subsurface temperature anomalies also lessened (averaging −1°C to −4°C at thermocline depth), and became increasingly confined to the surface  region (Fig. T17).  This evolution led to a significant weakening of the negative ocean heat content anomalies (average temperatures in the upper 300m of the ocean).  Despite this oceanic trend, the atmospheric conditions continue to strongly reflect La Niņa.  Enhanced low-level easterly winds and upper-level westerly winds persisted across the central equatorial Pacific (Figs. T20 and T21), convection remained suppressed throughout the central equatorial Pacific, and enhanced convection covered the far western Pacific (Fig. T25).  Collectively, these atmospheric and oceanic conditions indicate an ongoing, but weaker, La Niņa. 

The recent dynamical and statistical SST forecasts for the Niņo 3.4 region indicate La Niņa will become weak and persist through May-June-July 2008 (Figs. F1- F13). Thereafter, there is considerable spread in the forecasts, with nearly one-half indicating La Niņa could continue well into the second half of the year. Based on current atmospheric and oceanic conditions and recent trends, La Niņa is expected to continue for the next 3 months. 

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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