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. Niño 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
ENSO Alert System Status: Not Active
conditions are favored to continue through at least the Northern Hemisphere
spring 2017, with increasing chances for El Niño development into the fall.
ENSO-neutral conditions continued during
February, with near-average sea surface temperatures (SSTs) across the central
equatorial Pacific and above-average SSTs in the eastern Pacific (Fig. T18). The monthly Niño index values were near zero in the Niño-4 and
Niño-3.4 regions, and +0.6 and +1.6°C farther east in the Niño-3 and Niño-1+2
regions, respectively (Table T2). The upper-ocean heat content anomaly
increased during February and was slightly positive when averaged across the
central and eastern Pacific, a reflection of generally above-average
temperatures at depth (Fig. T17). Atmospheric convection remained suppressed
over the central tropical Pacific and enhanced over the Maritime Continent (Fig. T25). The low-level easterly winds were slightly enhanced over the
western tropical Pacific and were weaker than average over the eastern Pacific.
Also, upper-level westerly winds were anomalously easterly over portions of the
western and eastern Pacific (Figs. T20, T21). Overall, the ocean and atmosphere system is consistent with
Most models predict the continuation of
ENSO-neutral (3-month average Niño-3.4 index between -0.5°C and 0.5°C) through
the early Northern Hemisphere summer (May-July; Figs. F1-F13). However, some dynamical model forecasts,
including the NCEP CFSv2, anticipate an onset of El Niño as soon as the late
Northern Hemisphere spring (March-May 2017).
Because of typically lower skill in forecasts made at this time of the
year, and the lingering La Niña-like tropical convection patterns, the
forecaster consensus favors ENSO-neutral during the spring (March-May) with a
~75% chance. Thereafter, there are
increasing odds for El Niño toward the second half of 2017 (50-55% chance from
approximately July-December). In summary,
ENSO-neutral conditions are favored to
continue through at least the Northern Hemisphere spring 2017, with increasing
chances for El Niño development
into the fall.
updates of oceanic and atmospheric conditions are available on the Climate
Prediction Center homepage (El
Niño/La Niña Current Conditions and Expert Discussions).