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Climate Diagnostics Bulletin
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  Tropical Highlights

  Table of Atmospheric Indices  (Table 1)

  Table of Oceanic Indices  (Table 2)

  Time Series

  Time-Longitude Sections

  Mean & Anomaly Fields

  Appendix 1: Outside Contributions

Tropical Highlights


The pattern of tropical sea surface temperature (SST) anomalies

Tropical Highlights – December 2012



 During December 2012, the sea surface temperatures (SSTs) remained near average across the central and east-central equatorial Pacific, but colder-than-average over the far eastern equatorial Pacific (Fig. T18, Table T2). The latest monthly Niño indices were -0.1°C for the Niño 3.4 region and -0.9°C for the Niño 1+2 region (Table T2, Fig. T5). Consistent with these conditions, the depth of the oceanic thermocline (measured by the depth of the 20°C isotherm) remained near average across the central and east-central equatorial Pacific (Figs. T15, T16).

The equatorial low-level easterly trade winds remained slightly enhanced over the western equatorial Pacific during December, and were near-average across the central and east-central equatorial Pacific (Table T1, Fig. T20). This pattern is largely consistent with continued ENSO-neutral conditions.  Suppressed convection was seen over the western and central equatorial Pacific (Figs. T25, E3). Collectively, these oceanic and atmospheric anomalies reflect ENSO-neutral conditions.



For the latest status of the ENSO cycle see the ENSO Diagnostic Discussion at:

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