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HOME > Expert Assessments > Climate Diagnostics Bulletin > Forecast Forum
Forecast Forum - September 2005

          The canonical correlation analysis (CCA) forecast of SST in the central Pacific (Barnett et al. 1988, Science, 241, 192‑196; Barnston and Ropelewski 1992, J. Climate, 5, 1316‑1345), is shown in Figs. F1 and F2. This forecast is produced routinely by the Prediction Branch of the Climate Prediction Center . The predictions from the National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP) Coupled Forecast System Model (CFS03) are presented in Figs. F3 and F4a, F4b.  Predictions from the Markov model (Xue, et al. 2000: J. Climate, 13, 849‑871) are shown in Figs. F5 and F6.   Predictions from the latest version of the LDEO model (Chen et al. 2000: Geophys. Res. Let., 27, 2585‑2587) are shown in Figs. F7 and F8.  Predictions using linear inverse modeling (Penland and Magorian 1993: J. Climate, 6, 1067‑1076) are shown in Figs. F9 and F10. Predictions from the Scripps / Max Planck Institute (MPI) hybrid coupled model (Barnett et al. 1993: J. Climate, 6, 1545‑1566) are shown in Fig. F11.  Predictions from the ENSO‑CLIPER statistical model (Knaff and Landsea 1997, Wea. Forecasting, 12, 633‑652) are shown in Fig. F12.  Niņo 3.4 predictions are summarized in Fig. F13, provided by the Forecasting and Prediction Research Group of the IRI.

The CPC and the contributors to the Forecast Forum caution potential users of this predictive information that they can expect only modest skill.



            ENSO-neutral conditions are expected during the next 3-6 months.



During September, equatorial SST anomalies greater than +0.5°C were found between 160°E and 170°E, while negative anomalies less than -0.5°C were observed  at most locations between 130°W and the South American coast (Figs T9 and T18).  The SST departures in the Niņo 3 and Niņo 1+2 regions were negative, while weak positive departures were observed  in the Niņo 4 region (Table T2 and Fig. T5).  During the last three months surface and subsurface temperature anomalies have decreased, especially in the eastern equatorial Pacific (Figs. T9, T15 and T17), while atmospheric conditions (low-level winds, convection and sea level pressure) remained near average over most of the tropical Pacific (Figs. T7, T8, and T25).

           The large spread of the most recent statistical and coupled model forecasts (Figs. F1, F2, F3, F4a, F4b, F5, F6, F7, F8, F9, F10, F11, F12 and F13) from weak La Niņa to weak El Niņo indicates considerable uncertainty.  However, current conditions and recent observed trends support a continuation of ENSO-neutral conditions for the next 3-6 months.

           Weekly updates of SST, 850-hPa wind, OLR and features of the equatorial subsurface thermal structure are available on the Climate Prediction Center homepage at:


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