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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 2009

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: La Niņa Advisory      


            A transition to ENSO-neutral conditions is expected during April 2009.


Atmospheric and oceanic conditions during March 2009 continued to reflect weak La Niņa conditions. The monthly sea surface temperatures (SST) remain below-average across parts of the east-central and eastern Pacific Ocean (Fig. T18).  The Niņo-3.4 SST index value was −0.6°C for the month (Table T2).  Negative subsurface oceanic heat content anomalies (average temperatures in the upper 300m of the ocean) weakened further across the eastern half of the equatorial Pacific Ocean .  At thermocline depth, positive temperature anomalies in the western and central Pacific expanded eastward, while negative temperature anomalies became confined to the far eastern Pacific (Fig. T17).  Convection remained suppressed near the Date Line, and enhanced across Indonesia , but weakened during the later part of the month due to Madden-Julian Oscillation (MJO) activity (Fig. T25).  Enhanced low-level easterly winds and upper-level westerly winds also decreased across the equatorial Pacific Ocean (Figs. T20 and T21). Collectively, these oceanic and atmospheric anomalies are consistent with a weakening La Niņa.

A majority of model forecasts for the Niņo-3.4 region show that once established, ENSO-neutral conditions will continue through the remainder of 2009.  Several models indicate La Niņa will continue through March-May 2009 (Figs. F1-F13). Based on current observations, recent trends, and model forecasts, a transition to ENSO-neutral conditions is expected during April 2009.


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: April 2009
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