Study on the precursor of frequent occurrence of central Pacific El Nino

Thursday, 18 December 2014: 10:45 AM
Sang-Wook Yeh, Hanyang University, Marine Sciences and Convergent Technology, Seoul, South Korea, Xin Wang, SCSIO South China Sea Institute of Oceanology, Chinese Acaademy of Sciences, Guangzhou, China, Chunzai Wang, Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory, Miami, FL, United States and Boris Dewitte, LEGOS, Toulouse, France
This study examined the connections between the North Pacific climate variability and occurrence of the Central Pacific (CP) El Niño for the period from 1950-2012. A composite analysis indicated that the relationship between the North Pacific sea surface temperature (SST) along with its overlying atmospheric circulation and the CP El Niño during the developing and mature phases was changed when the occurrence frequency of the CP El Niño significantly increased after 1990. An Empirical Orthogonal Function (EOF) and Singular Value Decomposition (SVD) analyses of variability in the tropical Pacific and its relationship to North Pacific show that the North Pacific anomalous SST and the atmospheric variability are closely associated with the occurrence of the CP El Niño after 1990 than before 1990. There were noticeable differences in terms of the atmospheric variability conditions over the North Pacific such as the North Pacific Oscillation (NPO)-like atmospheric variability during the spring and its associated SST anomalies during the following winter before 1990 and after 1990. In addition, combined EOF analysis indicated that the wind-evaporation-SST feedback processes in the subtropical northeastern Pacific, which is associated with the NPO-like atmospheric circulation, become more effective to play a role in initiating the El Niño after 1990. Subsequently, such a change might have been associated with the frequent occurrence of the CP El Niño after 1990.