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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 canonical correlation analysis (CCA) forecast of SST in the central Pacific (Barnett et al. 1988, Science, 241, 192‑196; Barnston and Ropelewski 1992, J. Climate, 5, 1316‑1345), is shown in Figs. F1 and F2. This forecast is produced routinely by the Prediction Branch of the Climate Prediction Center. The predictions from the National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP) Coupled Forecast System Model (CFS03) are presented in Figs. F3 and F4a, F4b.  Predictions from the Markov model (Xue, et al. 2000: J. Climate, 13, 849‑871) are shown in Figs. F5 and F6.   Predictions from the latest version of the LDEO model (Chen et al. 2000: Geophys. Res. Let., 27, 2585‑2587) are shown in Figs. F7 and F8.  Predictions using linear inverse modeling (Penland and Magorian 1993: J. Climate, 6, 1067‑1076) are shown in Figs. F9 and F10. Predictions from the Scripps / Max Planck Institute (MPI) hybrid coupled model (Barnett et al. 1993: J. Climate, 6, 1545‑1566) are shown in Fig. F11.  Predictions from the ENSO‑CLIPER statistical model (Knaff and Landsea 1997, Wea. Forecasting, 12, 633‑652) are shown in Fig. F12.  Niño 3.4 predictions are summarized in Fig. F13, provided by the Forecasting and Prediction Research Group of the IRI.

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:  Not Active




ENSO-neutral is expected into the Northern Hemisphere spring 2014.




ENSO-neutral continued during September 2013, as sea surface temperatures (SSTs) were near-average across much of the equatorial Pacific Ocean (Fig. T18).  Except for the Niño-1+2 region, all of the monthly Niño index values were between 0°C and -0.5°C (Table T2).  The positive oceanic heat content (average temperature in the upper 300m of the ocean) anomalies weakened considerably during the month, due to an upwelling oceanic Kelvin wave that contributed to below-average temperatures in the east-central Pacific Ocean (Fig. T17).  The strength of the tropical atmospheric circulation anomalies, as reflected by convection and winds, also weakened over the last month.  Slightly enhanced convection remained over parts of Indonesia, with weakly suppressed convection evident near the Date Line (Fig. T25).  Low-level winds were near average, while anomalous westerly winds prevailed at upper-levels (Figs. T20 and T21).  Collectively, these atmospheric and oceanic conditions reflect ENSO-neutral.  

The majority of model forecasts indicate that ENSO-neutral (Niño-3.4 index between -0.5°C and 0.5°C) will persist into the Northern Hemisphere spring 2014 (Figs. F1-F13). Though the forecast favors near-average conditions, many models predict a gradual  change from slightly cooler- to slightly warmer-than average SSTs as the spring approaches.  Overall, the consensus forecast is for ENSO-neutral to continue into the Northern Hemisphere spring 2014.

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


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Page Last Modified: October 2013
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