ENSO Alert System Status: El Niño Advisory
10 September 2015 NOAA
EL NIÑO/SOUTHERN OSCILLATION (ENSO) DIAGNOSTIC DISCUSSION issued by CLIMATE PREDICTION CENTER/NCEP/NWS and the International Research Institute for Climate and Society
Synopsis: There is an approximately 95% chance that El Niño will continue through Northern Hemisphere winter 2015-16, gradually weakening through spring 2016. During August, sea surface temperature (SST) anomalies were near or greater than +2.0oC across the eastern half of the tropical Pacific (Fig. 1). SST anomalies increased in the Niño-3.4 and Niño 3-regions, were approximately unchanged in the Niño-4 region, and decreased in the Niño-1+2 region (Fig. 2). Large positive subsurface temperature anomalies persisted in the central and east-central equatorial Pacific during the month (Fig. 3), with the largest departures exceeding 6oC (Fig. 4). The atmosphere remained coupled to the anomalous oceanic warmth, with significant low-level westerly wind anomalies and upper-level easterly wind anomalies persisting from the western to east-central tropical Pacific. Also, the traditional and equatorial Southern Oscillation Index (SOI) were again negative, consistent with enhanced convection over the central and eastern equatorial Pacific and suppressed convection over Indonesia (Fig. 5). Collectively, these atmospheric and oceanic anomalies reflect a strong El Niño….
By Rong-Gong Lin II September 10, 2015 LA Times
El Niño is on track to become one of the most powerful on record, strongly suggesting California could face heavy rainfall this winter, climate scientists say. But El Niño still hasn’t sealed the deal, and there still needs to be a dramatic change in the winds in the Pacific Ocean if it is to be as strong as it might be, said Bill Patzert, climatologist for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in La Cañada Flintridge. “It’s still very impressive, but it’s a marathon with an El Niño,” Patzert said. “At 20 miles, do you hit the wall? Or do you pick up the pace?” At this point, El Niño is strong and could be even stronger than the 1997-98 event, which brought heavy rain and deadly flooding and mudslides across California, and gave the south of the state double its rainfall and the mountains double the snowpack. The latest government El Niño forecast, issued by the National Weather Service’s Climate Prediction Center on Thursday morning, said that computer models unanimously favor a strong El Niño, and that there is a 95% chance that El Niño will continue through the winter — essential if California is to benefit from increased rainfall as the state experiences its fourth year of punishing drought. “The present El Niño is already one of the strongest on record and is expected to strengthen further through the late fall or early winter months,” said Daniel Swain, climate scientist with Stanford University. “At this juncture, the likeliest outcome for California is a wetter-than-average winter.” California has already been feeling the effects of El Niño, with an increased number of hurricanes in the eastern Pacific that have sent intense storms over California this summer. El Niño is a factor in the rising humidity and scattered thunderstorms over the Southland this week, which have arrived from the remnants of Hurricane Linda…..