May 2016 ENSO Update – The 2015/16 El Niño Has Reached Its End

Guest Post by Bob Tisdale

This post provides an update of many of the ENSO-related variables we presented as part of the 2014-15 El Niño Series and for the 2015/16 El Niño series.


In the recent post Say Good-Bye to the 2015/16 El Niño, we illustrated and discussed how the weekly sea surface temperature anomalies of the NINO3.4 region of the equatorial Pacific had dropped below NOAA’s +0.5 deg C threshold for El Niño conditions for the week centered on May 18thWeekly sea surface temperature anomalies for that region are now below zero.

We noted in the April update that both Australia’s Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) and the U.S.’s NOAA have issued La Niña alerts for the ENSO season of 2016/17. (BOM notice is here, and NOAA advisory is here.) Sea surface temperature anomalies for the equatorial Pacific are rapidly moving in the direction.

The questions now:  If a La Niña forms and persists, how strong with will the 2016/17 La Niña be?  Will it last for a single-season, or will it be a multiyear La Niña like the 1998-01 La Niña that followed the 1997/98 El Niño, or will there be back-to-back La Niñas like we saw in 2010/11 and 2011/12 (See the current version of NOAA’s Oceanic NINO Index) and in 2007/08 and 2008/09 when NOAA was using the ERSST.v3b data for its Oceanic NINO Index)?

Back to your regularly scheduled update…


This post provides an update on the progress of the evolution and decay of the 2015/16 El Niño with monthly data through the end of April 2016, and for the weekly data through late-May, 2016. The post is similar in layout to the updates that were part of the 2014/15 El Niño series of posts here and the series of posts about the 2015/16 El Niño here. The remainder of the post includes a bunch of illustrations and a gif animation, so it might take a few moments to load on your browser.  Please click on the illustrations to enlarge them.

Included are updates of the weekly sea surface temperature anomalies for the four most-often-used NINO regions. Also included are a couple of graphs of the monthly BOM Southern-Oscillation Index (SOI) and the NOAA Multivariate ENSO Index (MEI).

For the comparison graphs we’re using the El Niño evolution years of 1997/98 and 1982/83 where possible (the two strongest El Niño events during recent decades) as references for 2015/16.

Also included in this post are evolution comparisons using warm water volume anomalies and depth-averaged temperature anomalies from the NOAA TOA project website.

Then, we’ll take a look at a number of Hovmoller diagrams comparing the progress so far for the 2015/16 El Niño to the El Niños of 1982/83 and 1997/98.


Note: The weekly NINO region sea surface temperature anomaly data for Figure 1 are from the NOAA/CPC Monthly Atmospheric & SST Indices webpage, specifically the data here.  The anomalies for the NOAA/CPC data are referenced to the base years of 1981-2010.

Figure 1 includes the weekly sea surface temperature anomalies of the 4 most-often-used NINO regions of the equatorial Pacific. From west to east they include:

  • NINO4 (5S-5N, 160E-150W)
  • NINO3.4 (5S-5N, 170W-120W)
  • NINO3 (5S-5N, 150W-90W)
  • NINO1+2 (10S-0, 90W-80W)

01 NINO Region Time Series

Figure 1

Note that the horizontal red (positive anomalies) and blue (negative anomalies) lines in the graphs are the present readings, not the trends.

The sea surface temperature anomalies for the easternmost NINO1+2 region have recently been cycling below and above zero.  The anomalies for NINO3 and NINO3.4 regions have recently turned negative.

NOTE:  The NINO4 region should follow soon.  In response to the recent upwelling Kelvin wave, the subsurface waters below the equatorial Pacific have become cooler than normal for the most part.  That is, the warmer-than-normal subsurface waters below the equatorial Pacific have mostly departed.  See Supplemental Figure 1, which is the most-recent cross section of equatorial subsurface temperature anomalies from the NOAA-GODAS website here.

Supplemental Figure 1

Supplemental Figure 1

[End note.]


Using weekly sea surface temperature anomalies for the four NINO regions, Figure 2 compares the 2015/16 El Niño with the 1997/98 event. (That weekly data start in January 1990, so we can’t include the 1982/83 El Niño.)  While sea surface temperature anomalies in the NINO4 and NINO3.4 regions peaked higher than in 1997, the NINO1+2 and NINO3 regions lagged well behind the 1997/98 El Niño.  In other words, the 1997/98 El Niño was a stronger East Pacific El Niño than the 2015/16 El Niño.

We also showed in the post here that the differences between sea surface temperature datasets and their uncertainties keep us from knowing which El Niño was strongest.

The NINO region sea surface temperature anomalies are continuing to show declines as the El Niño transitions to La Niña.  The weekly data are impacted by “weather noise” so we might expect to see another couple of upticks from time to time, but the 2015/16 El Niño decayed and is transitioning to La Niña on schedule.  El Niños are tied to the seasonal cycle and typically peak in November to January. See the post here.

02 NINO Region Evolutions

Figure 2


The Multivariate ENSO Index (MEI) is another ENSO index published by NOAA.  It was created and is maintained by NOAA’s Klaus Wolter.  The Multivariate ENSO Index uses the sea surface temperatures of the NINO3 region of the equatorial Pacific, along with a plethora of atmospheric variables…thus “multivariate”.

According to the most recent Multivariate ENSO Index update discussion, the El Niño conditions are decaying and “dropping below a Top-3 ranking”:

Compared to last month, the updated (March-April) MEI has stabilized (up by 0.11) at +2.07, continuing just below a Top-3 ranking for the second month in a row. The preceding nine-month run in the Top-3 is tied with 1982-83 for its duration, while 1997-98 kept this level going for a full 12 months. No other El Niño since 1950 even exceeded three months at that level. The August-September 2015 MEI of +2.53 represents the peak of the 2015-16 event, and was exceeded only during the 1982-83 and 1997-98 events. The overall evolution of the 2015-16 El Niño has been most similar to 1997-98, as monitored by the MEI.

There’s something else to consider about the MEI.  El Niño and La Niña rankings according to the MEI aren’t based on fixed threshold values such as +0.5 for El Niño and -0.5 for La Niña.  The MEI El Niño and La Niña rankings are based on percentiles, top 30% for the weak to strong El Niños and the bottom 30% for the weak to strong La Niñas.   This is difficult to track, because, when using the percentile method, the thresholds of El Niño and La Niña conditions vary from one bimonthly period to the next, and they can change from year to year.

The Multivariate ENSO Index update discussion and data for March/April were posted on May 6th.  Figure 3 presents a graph of the MEI time series starting in Dec/Jan 1979.  And Figure 4 compares the evolution in 2015/16 to the reference El Niños of 1982/83 and 1997/98.

03 MEI Time Series

Figure 3

# # #

04 MEI Evolution Comparison

Figure 4

According to NOAA’s Multivariate ENSO Index, the 2015/16 El Niño was weaker than the 1982/83 and 1997/98 events.


IMPORTANT NOTE:  The 1982 values of the TAO Project subsurface data have to be taken with a grain of salt. The deployment of the TOA project buoys started in the late 1980s and was not compete until the early 1990s.  Also keep in mind that these values are the output of a reanalysis (a computer model), not observations-only-based data. [End note.]

The NOAA Tropical Atmosphere-Ocean (TAO) Project website includes the outputs of a reanalysis for two temperature-related datasets for the waters below the surface of the equatorial Pacific.  See their new Upper Ocean Heat Content and ENSO webpage for descriptions of the datasets and for a link to the data presented in the following graphs.   The two datasets are Warm Water Volume (above the 20 deg C isotherm) and the Depth-Averaged Temperatures for the top 300 meters (aka T300).  Both are available for the:

  • Western Equatorial Pacific (5S-5N, 120E-155W)
  • Eastern Equatorial Pacific (5S-5N, 155W-80W)
  • Total Equatorial Pacific (5S-5N, 120E-80W)

Keep in mind that the longitudes of 120E-80W stretch 160 deg, almost halfway around the globe. For a reminder of width of the equatorial Pacific, see the protractor-based illustration here. Notice also that the eastern and western data are divided at 155W, which means the “western” data extend quite a ways past the dateline into the eastern equatorial Pacific.

Note:  After a recent temporary reformatting, the TAO Project website has returned their data webpage to its original format.  They’re available here. [End note.]

In the following three illustrations, we’re comparing reanalysis outputs for the evolution of the 2015/16 El Niño so far (through April 2016) with the outputs for the evolutions of the 1982/83 and 1997/98 El Niños. The Warm Water Volume outputs are the top graphs and the depth-averaged temperature (T300) outputs are the bottom graphs.  As you’ll see, the curves of two datasets are similar, but not necessarily the same.

Let’s start with the Western Equatorial Pacific (5S-5N, 120E-155W), Figure 5. The warm water volume and depth-averaged temperature anomalies show the Western Equatorial Pacific began 2015 with noticeably less warm water than during the opening months of 1997.  The western equatorial Pacific supplies the warm water for an El Niño.  Claims that El Niños are becoming stronger due to human-induced global warming are obviously not supported by the subsurface data from the western equatorial Pacific.  The warm water volume in 1982 was comparable at the start of 2015 but depth-averaged temperature anomalies started off higher in 2015 than in 1982. Notice how there was a much greater decline in 1997/98 than 2015/16.  That indicates more warm water migrated eastward from the western tropical Pacific during the 1997/98 event than in 2015/16….another indication that the 2015/16 El Niño was weaker that the one in 1997/98.

05 WWV and T300 Evolution - West

Figure 5

Both warm water volume and depth-averaged temperature anomalies in the Eastern equatorial Pacific (5S-5N, 155W-80W) in 2015/16 had lagged behind the values of 1997/98, but had been greater than the 1982/83 values for most of the event.  See Figure 6.  Both the warm water volume and T300 have recently fallen into line with those seen in 1997/98 and are now lower than the values in 1982/83.

06 WWV and T300 Evolution - East

Figure 6

Once again, with the noticeable differences between the 1997/98 and 2015/16 events, data contradict claims that the 2015/16 El Niño was stronger that the event of 1997/98. 

The total of the TAO project eastern and western equatorial subsurface temperature-related reanalysis outputs, Figure 7, are as one would expect looking at the subsets. Both the warm water volume and the subsurface T300 data show greater drops in 1997/98 than in 2015/16, suggesting that more heat was released from equatorial Pacific in 1997/98 than in 2015/16.

07 WWV and T300 Evolution - Total

Figure 7


The Southern Oscillation Index (SOI) from Australia’s Bureau of Meteorology is another widely used reference for the strength, frequency and duration of El Niño and La Niña events.  We discussed the Southern Oscillation Index in Part 8 of the 2014/15 El Niño series. It is derived from the sea level pressures of Tahiti and Darwin, Australia, and as such it reflects the wind patterns off the equator in the southern tropical Pacific.  With the Southern Oscillation Index, El Niño events are strong negative values and La Niñas are strong positive values, which is the reverse of what we see with sea surface temperature-based indices.  The April Southern Oscillation Index value is -22.0, which is a greater negative value than the threshold of El Niño conditions. (The BOM threshold for El Niño conditions is an SOI value of -8.0.)  In other words, according to the SOI, we were in back in El Niño conditions last month. Figure 8 presents a time-series graph of the SOI data.  The BOM SOI data provide more indications that the 2015/16 event was comparable to or weaker than many El Niño events.

08 SOI Time Series

Figure 8

Note that the horizontal red line is the present monthly value, not a trend line.

The graphs in Figure 9 compare the evolution of the SOI values in 2015/16 to those in 1982/83 and 1997/98. The top graph shows the raw data. Because the SOI data are so volatile, I’ve smoothed them with 3-month filters in the bottom graph. Referring to the smoothed data, the Southern Oscillation Index has recently once again fallen behind the values in 1997 and is comparable to the values in 1982.

09 SOI Evolution Comparison

Figure 9

Also see the BOM Recent (preliminary) Southern Oscillation Index (SOI) values webpage. The 30-day running average has been running in ENSO-neutral conditions for the past week.  Will it stay there?


NOTE:  For the following illustrations, I’ve extended the Hovmoller diagrams by splicing the 2016 portions of the most recent ones onto 2015 so that we can compare the evolutions and decays of the El Niños. [End note.]

Hovmoller diagrams are a great way to display data.  If they’re new to you, there’s no reason to be intimidated by them. Let’s take a look at Figure 10.  It presents the Hovmoller diagrams of thermocline depth anomalies (the depth of the isotherm at 20 deg C.  Water warmer than 20 deg C is above the 20 deg C isotherm and below it the water is cooler). 2015 is in the center, 1997 on the left and 1982 to the right.  (Sorry about the different sizes of the Hovmollers, but somewhere along the line NOAA GODAS changed them, but they are scaled, color-coded, the same.)

The vertical (y) axis in all the Hovmollers shown in this post is time with the first-year Januarys at the top and second-year Decembers at the bottom.  The horizontal (x) axis is longitude, so, moving from left to right in each of the three Hovmoller diagrams, we’re going from west to east…with the Indian Ocean in the left-hand portion, the Pacific in the center and the Atlantic in the right-hand portion.  We’re interested in the Pacific. The data are color-coded according to the scales below the Hovmollers.

Figure 10

Figure 10

Figure 10 is presenting the depth of the 20 deg C isotherm along a band from 2S to 2N. The positive anomalies, working their way eastward early in 1982, 1997 and 2015, were caused by downwelling Kelvin waves, which push down on the thermocline (the 20 deg C isotherm).  You’ll note how the anomalies grew in strength as the Kelvin wave migrated east. That does not mean the Kelvin wave is getting stronger as it traveled east; that simply indicates that the thermocline is normally closer to the surface in the eastern equatorial Pacific than it is in the western portion.  In this illustration, we’re looking at anomalies, not absolute values.

Based on thermocline depth anomalies, the El Niño conditions were much stronger in 1997/98 than they were in 1982/83 and in 2015/16.

The recent change to shallower-than-normal anomalies was initiated by an upwelling Kelvin wave.  The values in recent times appear to be lagging behind those in 1983 and 1998.

Figure 11 presents the Hovmollers for wind stress (not anomalies) along the equator.   The simplest way to explain them is that they’re presenting the impacts of the strengths and directions of the trade winds on the surfaces of the equatorial oceans. In this presentation, the effects of the east to west trade winds at various strengths are shown in blues, and the reversals of the trade winds into westerlies are shown in yellows, oranges and reds.  To explain the color coding, the trade winds normally blow from east to west; thus the cooler colors for stronger east to west trade winds. The reversals of the trade winds (the yellows, oranges and reds) are the unusual events and they’re associated with El Niños, which are the abnormal state of the tropical Pacific.  (A La Niña is simply an exaggerated normal state.)

Figure 11

Figure 11

The two westerly wind bursts shown in red in the western equatorial Pacific in 1997 are associated with the strong downwelling Kelvin wave that formed at the time. (See the post ENSO Basics: Westerly Wind Bursts Initiate an El Niño.) Same thing with the three westerly wind bursts early in 2015, January through April:  they initiated the Kelvin wave this year. Throughout 1997, there was a series of westerly wind bursts in the western equatorial Pacific. Same thing occurred in 2015. There were comparatively few westerly wind bursts early in 1982, and the bursts early in 1982 appear to have been weaker than those in 1997 and 2015, according to this GODAS reanalysis. But there was a strong westerly wind burst later in 1982.  Returning to 2015/16, the most recent westerly wind burst happened in January 2016.

Based on what happened in 1983 and 1998, we may not expect to see another westerly wind burst until October-December of 2016, and then the westerly wind bursts would likely be weak by comparison to those that occurred during the El Niños.

Figure 12 presents the Hovmollers of wind stress anomalies…just a different perspective.  But positive wind stress anomalies, at the low end of the color-coded scale, are actually a weakening of the trade winds, not necessarily a reversal.

Figure 12

Figure 12

NOTE: There are a number of wind stress-related images on meteorological websites.  Always check to see if they’re presenting absolute values or anomalies.  [End note.]

And Figure 13 presents the Hovmollers of sea surface temperature anomalies along the equator.

Figure 13

Figure 13

Notice the extremely high sea surface temperature anomalies in the eastern equatorial Pacific during the peak of the 1997/98 El Niño. While the sea surface temperatures in 2015/16 had reached well above threshold of a strong El Niño, they were still well behind those of the 1997/98 El Niño…especially east of 120W (to about 90W), where sea surface temperature anomalies were more than 4.0 deg C. In 1982/83, sea surface temperature anomalies also reached 4.0 deg C, but we never reached those values in 2015/16.

That is, as noted earlier, the 1997/98 was a stronger East Pacific El Niño than the 2015/16 event.

Currently, sea surface temperature anomalies are where we would expect them for the transition from El Niño to La Niña conditions.


In the March ENSO update, we discussed how the most recent downwelling Kevin wave (initiated by the January 2016 Westerly Wind Burst) appeared to split the pocket of subsurface warm waters in the eastern equatorial Pacific in February 2016, creating two pockets of warm subsurface waters…one north of the equator and another south of the equator.  Those two pockets of warm subsurface waters (leftovers from the El Niño) are now migrating westward very slowly…very slowly (as Rossby waves).  In Animation 1, I’ve included an animation of the sea level residual maps from the JPL website here, starting in December 2015, through the most recent map dated May 22nd.

Animation 1

Animation 1

During the upcoming posts about the 2016/17 La Niña, we’ll discuss the impacts of that leftover warm water.

The last downwelling Kelvin wave (started in January 2016) was followed two months later by a strong upwelling Kelvin wave. Thus, the negative sea level residuals along the equator.


For additional introductory discussions of El Niño processes see:

Also see the entire 2014-15 El Niño series.  We discussed a wide-range of topics in those posts.


My ebook Who Turned on the Heat? goes into a tremendous amount of detail to explain El Niño and La Niña processes and the long-term aftereffects of strong El Niño events.  Who Turned on the Heat? weighs in at a whopping 550+ pages, about 110,000+ words. It contains somewhere in the neighborhood of 380 color illustrations. In pdf form, it’s about 23MB. It includes links to more than a dozen animations, which allow the reader to view ENSO processes and the interactions between variables.

My ebook Who Turned on the Heat? – The Unexpected Global Warming Culprit, El Niño-Southern Oscillation IS NOW FREE.  Click here for a copy (23MB .pdf).



I also published On Global Warming and the Illusion of Control (25MB .pdf) back in November.  The introductory post is here.  It also includes detailed discussions of El Niño events and their aftereffects in Chapter 3.7…though not as detailed as in Who Turned on the Heat?

101 thoughts on “May 2016 ENSO Update – The 2015/16 El Niño Has Reached Its End

  1. “The questions now: If a La Niña forms and persists, how strong with the 2016/17 La Niña be? ”
    Bob T…
    Should that be ” How strong WILL the 2016/17 La Niña be?”

      • If it has to do with the sun but not TSI, then just what does it have to do with the sun ??
        That is the only significant source of energy input to the earth.

        • That is not so easy to explain at the moment. Last October I had made a long comment about a correlation I noticed between changes in the ENSO regions and changes in hemispheric ssn. I was going to flesh out that idea last October, until my attention was diverted by life’s circumstances. My overall life has not been conducive to inner search or higher thought for some years now. Although, that will change in the near future for me. I look forward to that, immensely.
          I plan to take a second look at my original idea later this year. It might even become a first post for me.

      • It’s the only significant energy source, but not the only way that the sun influences the earth.

      • Yep. Look out for UV and ozone. UV has about 70 Times intensity of IR. Hence sunburn in day not from Bacakradiation(?!) at night. Ha.

  2. The questions now: If a La Niña forms and persists, how strong with the 2016/17 La Niña be?

    The question is, will the ‘pause’ reappear, and if so, will it by say late 2017/early 2018 be over 20 years in duration?
    In other words, what will be the position by the time AR6 comes to be written?
    If when AR6 comes to be written, the ‘pause’ is once more alive and kicking, and in fact rather than being some 18 years 7 months in duration, it is over 20 years in duration, this will cause problems for AR6.
    First, as the ‘pause’ lengthens it follows that ‘Climate Sensitivity’ must be ever lower. Thus in this scenario, over the coming 18 to 24 months, we can expect to see more and more papers putting Climate sensitivity at ever lower levels and in particular below 1.5degC. May be even down to the 1degC to 1.2degC figure.
    Second, the divergence between model projections and observational reality will widen such that all models will be outside their 95% confidence level. At the moment there are only a few that remain within that bound, but by 2018, they may well be none!
    All of this will cause the IPCC a great many problems since it will become ever more difficult to maintain the scary scenarios that are projected with high sensitivity. Once one ditches the high sensitivity model projections, at most, the 21st Century is in line for some benign warming which will be beneficial.
    If there is a strong La Nina, or multiyear La Nina, get the pop corn out. the ride should be fun.

    • Here is my take on it:
      *** UAH Global Only ***
      I do not keep up with everything monthly, somebody pointed out that following annual or decadal trends monthly was a lot of work, for not a lot of result.
      I calculated the Pause as of Sept., ’15, the anomaly temp was 0.140, going back 18 Yr., 5 Mo. at that point. I will use that as a baseline.
      I calculate the amount *above* 0.140, for every month since, and sum up.
      Magic Number = 3.22 deg Months.
      So to balance the Linear Least Squares line, we need a similar amount below the anomaly as we had above it.
      For instance, for ten months, we need 0.322 deg below the *anomaly* of 0.140, or -0.182 deg.
      To erase the El Nino in 5 months, we need 0.644 deg below the baseline, or -0.504 deg.
      Another way to look at it is, what if the measured temp is 0.00 anomaly, how long to erase the Pause?
      3.22/0.14 = 23 months.
      It will be a while before the Pause comes back.

      • TonyL, its not cumulative. The “pause” will be back on track once this El Nino has decayed, dependent on what averaging you use

      • TonyL,
        That’s the way to look at it. My version of the arithmetic for RSS is here. You go back to a time when the “pause” trend crossed zero. For the trend to reach zero again, the average since that time has to be less than the average during the pause. Just the three very warm months since then gives a surplus that will take a long time to erode. And we’ll be accumulating more surplus for some time.

      • It’s my understanding that the pause is calculated as a linear regression from the present, it is not certainly not calculated by summing up the anomalies over the period. After all if you go hill walking for a day, returning to your start point in the evening, it is quite safe to say that you vertical displacement relative to sea level on the day is roughly zilch,you certainly don’t have to dig a hole in the ground and sit in it for a specified period to “equalise” your vertical displacement on the day.
        Once this El Nino has decayed, the pause will reappear.

      • “The pause will reappear” Yes, but it won’t go back 19 years. It will reappear from 2015 or thereabouts. In order for it to go back 19 years the sum of the “below zero” parts must be greater than the “above zero” parts, as described above.
        Your hill walking analogy sounds appealing, but there is a problem becasue it ignores the time aspect spenbt at each altitude.
        If you stay in one place in a cabin half way up a 10,000′ mountain (call this zero altitude) and plot altitude vs time. You will have a horizontal line, or a “pause”. What happens if you walk up the mountain, gaining 5000′ over 6 hours then catch the cable car back to your cabin? Your altitude vs time plot now trends upward over several hours then quickly returns to zero. If we plot the trend we find a positive slope, even though you have returned to the zero altitude. To get a zero slope we need to catch the cable car up the hill to +5000′, stay there for say 6 hours then catch the cable car back down, past the cabin, into the valley at -5000′ then stay there for 6 hours before returning to the cabin at zero feet.

      • Seaice1, I understand your allegory, and would agree (although I’m not a math person). However, the graph can still be posted for folks to see. Won’t have the power of a statistically valid one, but still contradicting hysterical people.

      • Seaice , yes it will go back 19 or years. You are confusing rate of change with the smoothing average . It’s not an average.

      • Sparky, you are confused, but it turns out I was as well. We are talking about the slope of the trendline, which is a sort of average. The pause is defined as as far back from today as you can go with a non-positive trend in the slope.
        I was a bit confused, but I think I am sorted now.
        If you stand on a floor, you will have a “pause” in your altitude – a zero slope. Say we stand here for 20 data points, then jump. Before the jump you have a zero slope for 20 data points, or a pause of 20 data points. As you jump, you will have a positive blip of height (say) 10 for one data point (number 21), then return to floor level.
        Working out how far back you can go with a non-positive slope we have
        point 20: 20 points (before the jump)
        point 21: no points. Slope is always positive however far back we go. The pause has disappeared
        pont 22: back to point 20, 2 points. The slope is balanced by equal numbers of points before and after the jump.
        point 23: back to point 19, 4 points
        point 24: back to 18, 6 points.
        As we move forward, the pause lengthens by 2 data points for every one data point added as the number of points before and after the blip balance. By point 42 we have a pause of 42 data points. After this we will have a negative slope for all data points.
        I was thinking that If you spend time positive you MUST spend time negative in order for the slope of the trendline to be non-positive. However that is not the case. You must spend as long after the positive as you had spent before the positive to balance out the slope.

      • Sea Ice One thing I dont like about calculating a trend using the least squares (minimising standard deviation ) method is the extra relative weight it gives to Outliers such as the peak of an El Nino. Wonder how different the trend would be using a minimise square root method, After all with Temperature being an intensive property, The Average surface Temperature is also a function of specific heat capacity

      • Sparky,
        I don’t think this way of calculating the pause is very useful, as something that can suddenly go from nearly 19 years to zero with the addition of one data point is clearly missing out a lot of information. I recommend using all available data and calculating the trend over the whole range in the absence of a reason to do otherwise. If you want to select a part of the range there should be a good reason for doing so, such as a statistical test for a change in the slope.

    • My expectations is that the down slope off of the plateau will now take place. I also expect this negative ENSO phase to last into 2018, imo.

  3. richard verney
    May 30, 2016 at 6:36 am
    The question is, will the ‘pause’ reappear, and if so, will it by say late 2017/early 2018 be over 20 years in duration?”

    Was just thinking the same thing.
    How low will the atmosphere temperatures need to drop for the trend to be statistically flat again effectively extending the widely accepted “pause”?

    • How low will the atmosphere temperatures need to drop for the trend to be statistically flat again effectively extending the widely accepted “pause”?

      RSS has to drop to 0.24 from the April value of 0.757 before anything can happen. After it goes below 0.24, it becomes a combination of how low and for how long. For example, if it hits -0.25, it would take months. But if it stays at 0.20, it could take years. Then there is everything in between. This assumes of course that there are no adjustments to RSS.

      • I don’t believe this is correct. If I stand still for an hour and then jump as high as I can for a split second, I don’t have to then go lower than the floor to be “still” for the period I am measuring.
        These calculations you and others are using are simple averages: that’s not how it works.

      • The 1997/98 Super El Nino brought about a step change in the temperature. Presently, we do not know whether the present 2015/2016 El Nino will do likewise, but it appears doubtful. Further, if you look at the Sat data, there was a very big step up in temperature with the 1997/98 Super El Nino, but far less of a step up in temperature with the 2015/2016 El Nino. They appear different beasts even if the high of the blip associated with the current El Nino is higher than the 1998 blip.
        Obviously, everything depends upon how the future pans out. Will there be a La Nina, if so, how strong will it be, will it be a multiyear La Nina etc etc. On top of this is the lag before La Nina conditions show up in the Sat data series. So we are not talking about 2016.
        The ‘pause’ was busted by only a few months worth of high anomalies, and it would not be surprising if the ‘pause’ reappears after only a few months of cool anomalies. If the present gradient of the trend line say from around 1996/1997 is close to zero (positive but close to zero), it is unlikely to take that many months of cool data to return that gradient to zero.
        The 2010 El Nino was only a short lived blip, and I suspect (this is not a prediction but rather a guestimate) that the current fading El Nino will also be just a short lived blip in the Sat data.
        It would not surprise me if by 2017 La Nina conditions are such that the ‘pause’ reappears but this time it will be of a duration more than 12 months longer than the duration it had shortly before it disappeared from the ‘record’

      • Tim Hammond, you make an interesting point. The Global mean T is what it is. What it was in the past is not cogent to what it is now. For a long time 1998 was the warmest year in the atmospheric record. As the two El Nino’s, 98 and the current one ending now did not follow the exact pattern for identical months, I am still curious as to which of them produced the highest anomaly for 12 consecutive months.
        I also maintain that when the AMO is ten years into it apparently repetitive negative trend, and the PDO is also negative, then what El Nino’s we do experience will not have a strong an affect on GMT.

      • If I stand still for an hour and then jump as high as I can for a split second, I don’t have to then go lower than the floor to be “still” for the period I am measuring.

        That analogy does not apply here. One that would apply is if you decided to save 10 dollars a day for a month. If you save 10 dollars a day for 20 days and then blow it one day and save only 2 dollars, you cannot make up for it by saving 10 next day. You have to save 18 the next day to average 10 a day.

  4. And Sydney weather stations observe the coldest May morning in 20 years-
    which is no big deal but of course that reporting would not be fit and proper without the ubiquitous caveat-
    ‘But despite the cold snap, Sydney and several parts of New South Wales were on track to break the record for the warmest autumn ever.
    “We’ve never had an autumn average of maximum temperatures this high,” he said.
    The average maximum temperature for the season to 29 May was 25C at Sydney’s Observatory Hill. The previous record to 29 May was 24.5C.
    “Particularly for the daytime temperatures, the record has been cleared by such a margin … that it’s just basically inevitable,” Taggart said. “You could throw in some really cold days in Sydney for the next couple of days and you’ll still have the warmest autumn on record.”
    The average minimum there this autumn was 16.8C – 0.3C above the previous record.’
    But now have a look at Sydney’s Observatory Hill where that temperature is measured, particularly all that bitumen lead-in to the Sydney Harbour Bridge, not to mention all the buildings cuddling up to what was virgin scrub in 1788-”/Observatory+Hill+NSW/@-33.8588673,151.2027246,941m/data=!3m1!1e3!4m8!4m7!1m0!1m5!1m1!1s0x6b12ae4381e77585:0xd406ec273f5822af!2m2!1d151.2045227!2d-33.8595887
    Any possible UHI influence there Mr Taggart? Perish the thought but note the hi-rise in the modern picture-
    not to mention-
    ‘A proposal to close the observatory in 1926 was narrowly avoided, but, by the mid-1970s, the increasing problems of air pollution and city light made work at the observatory more and more difficult.’
    That air pollution would be all those internal combustion engines on those ever increasing bitumen lanes alongside it but give it no heed with thermometer readings like this, as pitifully short as they are historically.

  5. the record for the warmest autumn ever.
    warmest autumn in 1 billion years?

  6. Bob, sometime 6-8 months ago I think, I commented on a thread of yours that with the meagre VOLUME of warm water left at the time, the El Nino couldn’t last much longer. I suggested to you at the time that the progress to the demise should be calculable from the average temp anomaly of the mass of water. I’m now encouraged to suggest that this calculation be done. One could determine a coefficient to go with a cooling equation of some sort that would match the decline of the El Nino and onset of the El Nina. I’m not suggesting it would be simple but a first try seems worth it with the details you have on the evolution. This sort of thing converts a ‘graphic’ phenomenon into a quantitative scientific one – like geo’graph’y vs geology. This might be a project that would interest Willis

  7. I’d like to see a graph of El Nino overlayed with graph of media hype about El Nino. If something is growing at an ever increasing rate, it’s media hyperbole.

  8. Bob’s post lead me to different places of interest. ENSO and the El Nino/La Nina cycles are well covered but it takes me to where does the water go after. Particularly how does it move away from the equator and back to the north and south. Well, honestly, I am most interested in the circulation up to Japan and back to the Gulf of Alaska as I was taught 50 years ago that the eastern Pacific is what brings my weather to me in Canada.
    Still reading and re-reading sections of “Who Turned on the Heat”. I struggle with anomalies since the anomalies can lead to odd looking results depending on what one uses for a base line. And looking at the huge variations in the temperature tracks, I wonder how useful the SST anomalies are in the long term. Short term anomalies do tell us about things like the “Blob” so they are important.
    I will continue to read and learn, but in the mean time, I want to post this image of our living, breathing earth. How much is model and how much is data, I have no idea but it is most intriguing to me how the Ocean SST move with the seasons and years. This animation, if I post it properly runs from late 1981 to May 2016. It shows the 1982/83, 1997/98 and 2014/16 El Nino’s. It also shows some interesting pulses of warm water hitting the Gulf of Alaska and the Bering Strait circa 2007.
    While it might be tempting the think of some of the temperature tracks as ocean currents, they don’t correlate strongly from what I can see although it is hard to say. Clearly the seasons have a big impact and wind and ocean currents do have an effect but the tracks and gyres are not the same so far as I can tell though there are so many influencing factors. I have no idea.
    The animation – should it work:{+%2FT+2444945+2457527+plotrange+}&map.domainparam=+%2Fplotaxislength+432+psdef+%2Fplotborder+72+psdef+%2FXOVY+null+psdef&map.zoom=Zoom&map.Y.plotfirst=90S&map.X.plotfirst=0&map.X.units=degree_east&map.X.modulus=360&map.X.plotlast=0&map.sst.plotfirst=-2&map.sst.units=Celsius_scale&map.sst.plotlast=35&map.newurl.grid0=X&map.newurl.grid1=Y&

    • Yes, a lot of warm water must go north into that vast pool, the North Pacific. Hence the ‘Blob’ possibly. We watch, as suggested by Bob Tisdale, but are there enough measurements to find it all? El Blobbo seems to have surprised us?

    • as per dcs , that is a seriously cool animation wayne, thank you for posting that. i centred the map on the uk ,it really highlights the seasonal ebb and flow of sst .

  9. It’s going to get cold. It’s ALREADY cold. -3.5 C at the moment in Victoria, Australia (admittedly 4:30 am and in the mountains) and heavy frost outside.
    It’s not going to be nice, but I fear the world needs it to stop this foolishness.
    Thanks, Bob, your posts are always in depth and valuable.

  10. “In the March ENSO update, we discussed how the most recent downwelling Kevin wave (initiated by the January 2016 Westerly Wind Burst) appeared to split the pocket of subsurface warm waters in the eastern equatorial Pacific in February 2016, creating two pockets of warm subsurface waters…one north of the equator and another south of the equator. Those two pockets of warm subsurface waters (leftovers from the El Niño) are now migrating westward very slowly…very slowly (as Rossby waves)”
    Bob Tisdale –
    Thank you for your work. I look forward to this discussion. We should be very grateful for ENSO events as they display important mechanisms within short time frames
    I am not at all surprised that pockets of warm subsurface water are being recorded north and south of the equator as I believe ENSO events are more to do with rates of heat transfer to cooler latitudes than west to east. El Nino is about the trapping of heat at the equator – the car thermostat locks shut isolating the motor from the radiator
    Your discussion on remnant heat will be interesting: either it continues to cool and we come back to normal mean recorded temperature or it remains locked in the system resulting in a step increase. The latter appeared to have happened after 98
    Going on local weather there is still a lash in the tail of the latest El Nino. We have had an uncharacteristic May: 21 days of strong NW and W winds, and rain still going strong . I would guesstimate rain during this time at around 10 inches. It has happened before, some years back when we had 33 days of rain. I have a neighbour who has kept rain records for 55 yrs. I will see if the last one coincided with 98
    The good thing about being born and growing up in a agricultural region dependent on sun and rain is that the stories and memories stick last week we had the first severe tornado in my living memory. It wrecked farm buildings. But, the stories came out: a 75 yr old man remembers one in his youth
    5 years ago we had snow fall. My mother told us of one back in 1928
    There is nothing new under the sun
    Michael C

  11. This may have been asked before – are there similar phenomena in the Equatorial Atlantic and Indian Oceans and, if not, why not ?? I’m familiar with the AMO, but why only the Pacific seemingly affecting, controlling even, global temperatures the way it does ??

    • “why only the Pacific seemingly affecting, controlling even, global temperatures the way it does ??”
      The Pacific contains approx 50% of all oceanic water ( ) & a large % of it lies within the tropics plus the ~ bowl shape tends to concentrate the heat.
      The Atlantic is narrow in the topics & wide in the temperate zones so any large heat gain is rapidly dissipated north & south.
      It’s a lot more complex than that, (lots of fluid dynamics & gravitation) but that’s the basic.
      Look on a globe (not a flat map), for a better understanding of how shapes influence ocean currents.

  12. Wayne Delbeke
    May 30, 2016 at 10:04 am
    Bob’s post lead me to different places of interest. ENSO and the El Nino/La Nina cycles are well covered but it takes me to where does the water go after. Particularly how does it move away from the equator and back to the north and south. Well, honestly, I am most interested in the circulation up to Japan and back to the Gulf of Alaska as I was taught 50 years ago that the eastern Pacific is what brings my weather to me in Canada.
    Hi wayne,
    myself I was wondering about “downwelling and upwelling,” oceanic kelvin waves.
    We got coastal kelvin waves and equatorial kelvin waves etc. etc.
    They are related to “Coriolis force” and is a result of the earth’s rotation.
    My question to Mr. Tisdale was going to be…
    Is the downwelling kelvin out of the N. hemisphere and the upwelling kelvin out of the S. hemisphere?
    note extensional and compressional and having coastal boundaries.

    in the solar case are they using fluid or gas model for Coriolis force?

    • My understanding, after some reading, is that ‘upwelling’ and ‘downwelling’ in relation to Kelvin waves actually means (by convention) migration W-E and reverse. There is some change in sea surface elevation but not necessarily any up/downwelling of warm or cold cells within the water column (although is going to happen in many situations anyway)
      Not a very helpful expression actually.
      Anyone is welcome to correct me if I am wrong

      • Carla and Michael Carter: My understandings of Pacific equatorial Kelvin waves: First, they are occurring along the Cromwell current, which is a subsurface current traveling from west to east below the equatorial Pacific. Second, they’re called downwelling and upwelling because of their impacts on the depth of the thermocline in the eastern portion. With a downwelling Kelvin wave, a “pulse” of warm water is carried east by the Cromwell current, increasing the depth of the thermocline in the east. With the upwelling Kelvin wave, a “pulse” of cooler-than-normal water is carried east by the Cromwell current, decreasing the depth of the thermocline in the east.

      • Bob’s point on counter currents needs highlighting. We often see presentations of surface currents and “depictions” of deeper currents. Now think about Hadley and Walker Cells in the atmosphere. Then think about the ocean. Not to disparage the simple depictions of ocean currents as they are useful teaching tools but the system is complex. Research is disclosing more and more. With thousands of measurements, in time we will get a much better understanding.
        The ocean is three dimensional. Then we have the thermocline. So if I have understood what I have read over the last few years, we have surface currents, subsurface currents, and deep currents all working in 3 dimensions affected by the seasons, “Coriolis Force”, winds, rotation, counter currents, diffusion, temperature and salinity drivers and geographic features with vortices and constantly changing circulation. Anyone who has worked in water engineering and/or fluid dynamics knows how complex the circulation may be.
        Looking at Argo tracks is pretty illuminating but since they traverse differently moving bodies of water we only get a gross idea of the the currents, temperature, salinity, etc. It may be years before we get a detailed (and constantly changing seasonal) map. Although my reading suggests there is a lot of hard to access information out there (university research, private research, classified).
        You can look up the Argo circulation and the surface drifter data and see that the ocean currents are complex. Some surface currents can trap drifters for several years. The diving Argos also experience some “loopiness”. The Oceans currents don’t follow nice straight lines – horizontally or vertically.
        The null earth shows how loopy some of the surface currents are.
        Surface Currents Japan to Gulf of Alaska with SST Anomaly:,40.43,1024

      • Bob Tisdale May 31, 2016 at 2:29 am
        Thanks Mr. Tisdale. I took that info and went a little further.
        Since you already have an understanding of these kelvin waves, I’ll share this with the group and M. Carter.
        But do pass along to Anthony.. The link at the NOAA site I’ll link to is in the “https” new standard format.
        Oceanic Kelvin waves: The next polar vortex*
        Michelle L’Heureux.
        Thursday, January 22, 2015
        *Okay, maybe not.
        …….””The Kelvin waves that are relevant to ENSO only move eastward and along the equator (1). Like all planetary waves, the geographic extent of an equatorial Kelvin wave is huge, often stretching over much of the Pacific Ocean (thousands of miles).
        Equatorial Kelvin waves have two phases, which can lead to very different changes in subsurface and sea surface temperature (SSTs) in the eastern tropical Pacific:
        (A) Downwelling phase: Normally, winds blow from east to west across the tropical Pacific, which piles up warm water in the western Pacific. A weakening of these winds starts the surface layer of water cascading eastward. The thick warm layer sloshes east, pushing down the thermocline as it goes, thus we call this a “downwelling” wave. The thermocline is the boundary between the warmer, near surface mixed layer and colder deeper water (4). Because of this downward push as the wave travels eastward, it is harder for the colder, deeper water to affect the surface so near-surface temperatures are often above average. This will often (not always) warm the surface temperatures and plant the seeds for an El Niño (5).
        (B) Upwelling phase: After the downwelling part of the wave goes by, we sometimes see a rebound or upwelling where there was once downwelling (6). Here, the colder water at depth upwells and the thermocline comes closer to the surface. We often will see below average temperatures near or at the surface.
        You can see both downwelling and upwelling phases in this diagram below, …….
        vukcevic May 31, 2016 at 3:12 am
        Tom Halla May 30, 2016 at 5:54 am
        “There is clearly something going on to produce the patterns of El Niño, but God knows what.”
        Lunar effect mentioned makes sense.
        If the lunar tides affect the large water mass movement, the same tidal effect would be affecting the Equatorial crust, and possible trigger tectonic events
        Hi Vuks,
        Those planetary/kelvin waves are huge..
        has to be more to it than just lunar effect, or wind effect, but I think you know that. But what is the combination.
        Wondering how the global electric circuit evolves over extended periods of REDUCED solar activity.

      • Carla you are a mischievous lady. The numbers are there. A numerical coincidence may have occurred in the two processes, one mental and one physical, since they have an abstract near-equality, but not necessarily theoretical or even ‘acceptable’ rational explanation, thus it has to be classed as an ‘incredible’ coincidence.

  13. Dr. Tisdale: It is time for me to give you a big thanks. Between “Who Turned Up The Heat” and all your postings here, I’ve developed at least a basic understanding of some of the climate issues. You are a true gentleman.

  14. Tom Halla May 30, 2016 at 5:54 am
    “There is clearly something going on to produce the patterns of El Niño, but God knows what.”
    Lunar effect mentioned makes sense.
    If the lunar tides affect the large water mass movement, the same tidal effect would be affecting the Equatorial crust, and possible trigger tectonic events.
    (graph was created 4 0r 4 years ago and needs updating.

    • Vuc, you forgot the picture of the elephant’s tail. Not to mention the statistical probability of finding correlations in noisy highly paramatized combined data sets. You could add the flight of a bumble bee and discover a match in your graph.

      • Ms Gray
        Geologists have data you know, and I am inclined to think they are more reliable than the data produced by the climate scientists. Data, as if you didn’t know, are just numbers, in this case two sets of annual numbers.
        My contribution is minimal, applying graphing facility on the two columns of numbers in the Excel spreadsheet. I shall not comment on your recurrent fascination for, as you put it, the “picture of the elephant’s tail.”
        On this blog most of commentators abbreviate my user name to Vuk, but that is only a minor error in comparison to the rest of your comment. Have a nice day now.

    • vukcevic May 31, 2016 at 1:20 pm
      Carla you are a mischievous lady.
      …. to be classed as an ‘incredible’ coincidence….
      Hi Vuks, didn’t know that Vuks formula nailed Solar Cycle 24, B*lls to the Wall, so to speak.
      Wowee kazam 78.9. Not 77 not 78 or 79 but a 78.9. wow
      Not so mischievous. Been thinking lots bout the global electric circuit and playing around in the ionosphere.
      Lots of good current reading and data available. This time of year Earth is in its most northern extent with respect to heliocurrent sheet and current sheet crossings. Need to always bear in mind location, location, location. There seems to be more info available for a Southward IMF than Northward but what I have seen still is similar in effect..
      This is a goody article (below) and later I found out … and is open access. Are there two-cell Hall current vortices at the south pole too? Earth’s magnetic field to the North is 4 pos/neg, pos/neg. Where the South is 2 pos/neg.
      Transmission of the electric fields to the low latitude ionosphere in the magnetosphere-ionosphere current circuit Takashi Kikuchi1* and Kumiko K. Hashimoto2
      Pg. 2
      The convection electric field drives the DP2 currents composed of two-cell Hall current vortices at high latitude and zonal currents at the equator (Nishida 1968). The DP2 magnetic fluctuations are well correlated with the southward IMF (Nishida 1968) and occur simultaneously at high latitude and equator (Kikuchi et al. 1996). Figure 2 shows DP2 fluctuations at high latitude (Nurmijarvi) and equator (Mokolo) with the correlation coefficient of 0.9 and no time shift greater than 25 s, suggesting near-instantaneous transmission of the convection electric field to the equator same as for the preliminary impulse (PI) of the geomagnetic sudden commencement (SC) (Araki 1977).
      see page 3 figure 3
      I see on Dr. S., website he is too up in the ionosphere, unbeknownst to me at the time of the quest. Note. “History Development Solar Terrestrial Relations.” PDF
      But now Microsoft Edge has two of his windows locked and can’t close them. Edge has bugs…
      Worked two days for FedEx ground my second choice. My first choice was a little late getting back to me but by Mon. or Tues. next week should be onboard with DHL. No, I am not an International Security risk, of which that background check is onway as of today.

      • Yes, there is a link.. open access too.
        Figure 3 diagram of two-cell Hall current vortices
        Transmission of the electric fields to the low latitude ionosphere in the magnetosphere-ionosphere current circuit
        Here’s that reference to Northward IMF conditions….
        An evidence for prompt electric field disturbance driven by changes in the solar wind density under northward IMF Bz condition
        Diptiranjan Rout, D. Chakrabarty, R. Sekar, G. D. Reeves, J. M. Ruohoniemi, Tarun K. Pant, B. Veenadhari, K. Shiokawa
        First published: 26 May 2016
        …Most importantly, the density pulse event caused enhancements in the equatorial electrojet strength and the peak height of the F layer (hmF2) over the Indian dip equatorial sector. Further, the concomitant enhancements in electrojet current and F layer movement over the dip equator observed during this space weather event suggest a common driver of prompt electric field disturbance at this time. Such simultaneous variations are found to be absent during magnetically quiet days. In absence of significant change in solar wind velocity and magnetospheric substorm activity, these observations point toward perceptible prompt electric field disturbance over the dip equator driven by the overcompression of the magnetosphere by solar wind density enhancement…
        This one for Dr. S.
        Long-term EEJ variations by using the improved EE-index
        Accepted 8 January, 2016
        Akiko Fujimoto1, Teiji Uozumi1, Shuji Abe1, Hiroki Matsushita2, Shun Imajo2, Jose K. Ishitsuka3, Akimasa Yoshikawa1
        ..We found that the long-term variation of daily EEJ peak intensity has a trend similar to that of F10.7 (the solar activity). The power spectrum of the daily EEJ peak has clearly two dominant peaks throughout the analysis interval: 14.5 days and 180 days (semi-annual). The solar cycle variation of daily EEJ peak correlates well with that of F10.7 (the correlation coefficient 0.99). We conclude that the daily EEJ peak intensity is roughly determined as the summation of the long-period trend of the solar activity resulting from the solar cycle and day-to-day variations caused by various sources such as lunar tides, geometric effects, magnetospheric phenomena and atmospheric phenomena. This work presents the primary evidence for solar cycle variations of EEJ on the long-term study of the EE-index. ..
        With respect to Earth’s orbital location in the helio current sheet, wonder on what dates 180 day (semi annual) PEAKs coincide?
        Just found it open on my computer, time to take this article for stroll.

      • Third and final Isn’t there a solar update coming along anytime soon?
        Talk about an Elephant in the room… Ring Current is there all the time…we have only beeeen seeing the enhancements.
        “””So trying to predict the storm-time ring current enhancement while ignoring the substantial pre-existing current is like trying to describe an elephant after seeing only its feet,” Gkioulidou said.””””
        Van Allen Probes reveal long-term behavior of Earth’s ring current
        May 19, 2016 by Geoffrey Brown
        …The Van Allen Probes, launched in 2012, offer scientists the first chance in recent history to continuously monitor the ring current with instruments that can observe ions with an extremely wide range of energies. The RBSPICE instrument has captured detailed data of all types of these energetic ions for several years. “We needed to have an instrument that measures the broad energy range of the particles that carry the ring current, within the ring current itself, for a long period of time,” Gkioulidou said. A period of one year from one of the probes was used for the team’s research.
        “After looking at one year of continuous ion data it became clear to us that there is a substantial, persistent ring current around the Earth even during non-storm times, which is carried by high-energy protons. During geomagnetic storms, the enhancement of the ring current is due to new, low-energy protons entering the near-Earth region. So trying to predict the storm-time ring current enhancement while ignoring the substantial pre-existing current is like trying to describe an elephant after seeing only its feet,” Gkioulidou said….
        Thank you for your hospitality on this thread Mr. Tisdale.
        The EEJ Equatorial Electro Jet and affiliated constituents, should be of some import to you..

  15. Hi Bob,
    Thank you for your work.
    I just plotted UAH Lower Troposphere (UAHLT) global temperature anomalies vs Nino34 anomalies and there appears to be a fair-to-good correlation especially for the 1997-98 and 2015-16 El Nino’s, with a ~4-month lag of UAHLT after Nino34.
    It appears reasonable to conclude that global temperatures will fall steeply for the rest of 2016 and then continue to decline for an equal or greater time, but on a flatter trajectory.
    I also predicted net global cooling (defined as colder than +0.2C UAHLT anom) by about mid-2017 based on low solar activity, but hope to be wrong about that. Warm is good, cold is bad – it IS that simple.
    Regards to all, Allan

    Why do the NOAA Enso models over predict El Nino and under predict La Nina?
    The model envelope is getting dragged down by actual data (every month the high end models sink because the actual is lower than the prediction). We are down to only 1 model that stays out of Enso negative territory completely. That should end next month.
    In October only about 4 models were Enso negative for June.

  17. And yet, the “gifted” shout “hottest. summer. ever!”
    Meanwhile NWS prog yet another late season cut off low, bringing another belt of cold upper level air late this week.

  18. Thank you, Bob Tisdale. I have learned a great deal about ENSO from reading your posts.

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