Aussie Scientists: SOI 'Volatile'

March 12, 2013 01:21 AM

The Australian Bureau of Meteorology says as it typical for this time of year, the Southern Oscillation Index (SOI), which is used as a measure of ENSO, has been volatile. The recent increase in SOI has been due to persistent high pressure weather systems in the central Pacific Ocean, but overall ENSO indicators generally continue within the neutral range.

"(Southern Hemisphere) Summer ocean surface temperatures around Australia were the highest on record," notes the bureau. "Some cooling of the ocean off Australia’s northern coast has taken place in the last (two weeks), associated with tropical cyclones Sandra and Rusty, but southern waters remain warm. High ocean temperatures may promote increased local rainfall in favorable weather conditions."

The bureau adds that climate models indicate the tropical Pacific is likely to remain ENSO-neutral through the first part of the southern hemisphere autumn. "While it is known that predictions from dynamical models during the April through June period have lower skill, all models currently agree that an ENSO-neutral state is the most likely scenario for the next season," it states.


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