Skip Navigation Links 
NOAA logo - Click to go to the NOAA home page National Weather Service   NWS logo - Click to go to the NWS home page
Climate Prediction Center

Climate Diagnostics Bulletin
Climate Diagnostics Bulletin - Home Climate Diagnostics Bulletin - Tropics Climate Diagnostics Bulletin - Extratropics


About the Forecast Forum

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-neutral conditions are expected to continue through the end of 2008.   


ENSO-neutral conditions continued during August 2008, as recent increases in sea surface temperatures (SSTs) abated across the equatorial Pacific Ocean .  Above-average SSTs in the east-central and eastern Pacific diminished, while below-average SSTs in the central Pacific strengthened slightly (Fig. T18).  From west to east, the  monthly SST index values range from 0.3°C in the Niņo-4  region to +1.1°C in the Niņo 1+2 region (Table T2).  The subsurface oceanic heat content (average temperatures in the upper 300m of the ocean) also decreased in response to the emergence of negative temperature anomalies at thermocline depth in the east-central Pacific (Fig. T17). 

Although ENSO-neutral conditions have been in place since June 2008, the atmospheric circulation over the western and central tropical Pacific continues to reflect lingering aspects of La Niņa.  Enhanced low-level easterly winds and upper-level westerly winds persist in this region (Figs. T20 and T21), while convection remains generally suppressed over the central Pacific (Fig. T25).  Despite this lingering La Niņa signal in the atmosphere, the overall atmospheric and oceanic system is consistent with ENSO-neutral conditions.

Most of the dynamical and statistical SST forecasts for the Niņo 3.4 region indicate a continuation of ENSO-neutral conditions (−0.5°C to 0.5°C in the Niņo-3.4 region) through the Northern Hemisphere Spring 2009 (Figs. F1- F13).  While the model spread continues to include the possibility of an El Niņo, the decrease in subsurface and surface temperatures makes this outcome unlikely during the next several months.  In addition, the redevelopment of negative temperature anomalies at thermocline depth and the historical tendency for multi-year La Niņa episodes means that even a return to weak La Niņa conditions is possible.  However, based on current atmospheric and oceanic conditions, recent trends, and model forecasts, ENSO-neutral conditions are expected to continue through the end of 2008.

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

NOAA/ National Weather Service
NOAA Center for Weather and Climate Prediction
Climate Prediction Center
5830 University Research Court
College Park, Maryland 20740
Page Author: Climate Prediction Center Internet Team
Page Last Modified: September 2008
Information Quality
Privacy Policy
Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)
About Us
Career Opportunities