Science Centres: Climate
An overview of the present climate in the tropical South Pacific Islands, with an outlook for the coming months, to assist in dissemination of climate information in the Pacific region.
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El Niño/Southern Oscillation (ENSO)
The Equatorial Pacific Ocean is currently in a neutral ENSO state, with remnant anomalies from the La Niña event that has just concluded. Most dynamical and statistical climate models suggest ENSO neutral conditions for late autumn and early winter. Some long range models indicate El Niño could develop by austral spring.
Tropical Pacific conditions are in the neutral range, after the end of the 2011/12 La Niña event. The SOI is now significantly negative (below –0.5 standard deviations) for (almost) the first time in two years.
Normal or below normal tropical cyclone (TC) activity was forecast for most islands in the southwest Pacific during the 2011/12 season.
The end of the recent La Niña event is now evident in many oceanic and atmospheric indicators. The ensemble of dynamical models indicate dry conditions over and to the East of the dateline south of the Equator, while wet conditions are expected north of the Equator and along a southwest-shifted South Pacific Convergence Zone.
Sources of South Pacific rainfall data