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WMO: El Nino Delayed By Record May Temperatures

26.06.2014
26.06.2014 10:00 Age: 3 yrs

The World Meteorological Organization today suggests that record global surface temperatures in May have delayed the development of the expected El Nino Pacific Ocean warming event and that the El Nino may, as a result, be weaker than expected.

Click to enlarge. Daily measurements of the Southern Oscillation Index have dipped into negative El Nino territory in the last week. Graphic: reportingclimatescience.com. Data courtesy: Queensland Government

Click to enlarge. The key 30-day Southern Oscillation Index metric remains positive although it is declining, driven lower by recent negative daily readings. Graphic: reportingclimatescience.com. Data courtesy: Queensland Government

Click to enlarge. Here is the tabulated SOI data. Courtesy: Queensland Government

Click to enlarge. The latest computer model forecast from NOAA predicts that sea surface temperatures will scrape over the El Nino threshold later this year but will remain modest compared with the strong El Nino events seen in the past. Courtesy:NOAA

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Sources

See text of WMO statement below and here.

See the latest SOI data here.

See the latest NOAA computer forecast here.

See our report on May temperatures here.

See our report on the Nature paper suggesting global warming will lead to super El Ninos here.

See WMO April ENSO report here.

Here is the text of the WMO announcement released at 9am GMT Thursday 26 June 2014. (Press office contact details removed).

WMO Update: Prepare for El Nino

EMBARGOED TILL 0900GMT 26 JUNE

Geneva, 26 June 2014 (WMO) - There is a 60% likelihood of an El Nino being fully established between June and August, increasing to 75-80% for the October to December period, according to an El Nino Update issued by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO). Based on advice from National Meteorological and Hydrological Services, many governments have already started preparing for the arrival of El Nino, which is associated with regional-scale drought and flood situations in different parts of the world and has a warming influence on global average surface temperatures. 

El Nino is characterized by unusually warm ocean surface temperatures in the central and eastern tropical Pacific, coupled with typical atmospheric circulation patterns. It is a natural phenomenon with a recurring interval of 2-7 years and has a major impact on the climate around the world. The last El Nino was in 2009/2010.

Tropical Pacific Ocean temperatures have recently warmed to weak El Nino thresholds but atmospheric conditions (such as sea level pressure, cloudiness and trade winds) have remained neutral. This indicates that El Nino has not yet become fully established, as it essentially depends on the interaction between the ocean and the atmosphere. However, atmospheric patterns that are typical of a fully developed El Nino event on the basin-wide scale are still likely to appear, according to the WMO Update, which is based on consensus from experts around the world.

The tropical Pacific Ocean is expected to continue to warm during the coming months, peaking during the last quarter of 2014. Its potential intensity remains uncertain, but a moderate strength event currently appears more likely than a weak or strong one.

Warming Effect

Background:End of WMO announcement.



Sources

WMO announcement here.