DOES THE ENSO REFLECT THE 1970s?

Well, I love hearing the chatter and comparison about the weather being experienced now and what it was like back in the 70s, with many people saying it is comparable with that period in Australian weather.


I have been doing some digging around in the observed weather and have found some interesting data


A little post on that data I have been looking at.


Here are the observed ENSO anomalies through the 1970s and there is a lot of blue on the board. The decade was dominated by La Nina with only one decent El Nino. But notice how in the third La Nina year, that the La Nina did not wane over Winter, and we are possibly seeing this right now. This is why the next output of data for AMJ is really important which will be available during the next fortnight. It does not mean we will have a La Nina next Summer, but the chances are fairly high.

The current dominance of the La Nina suggests we could continue into a third Summer of La Nina with further excessive rainfall possible over the north and east of the country like we saw in the 70s. But it could also be like 2012 and turn neutral for a long while before facing another El Nino. Be aware, that just because we have a La Nina now, does not mean it is followed up with an El Nino the following year.

These are the Average SSTs for decade blocks based on 30 year base periods and is supposing where the SSTs are forecast to go, and the only way is up, but there is equal argument that the while the overall engine room is expected to be warmer than normal leading to more El Nino, the trend above in the observed data should technically not be happening and to experience now a 2 year block of La Nina and heading potentially into our 3rd, bucks the trend of climate reports and discussion.

The weather continues to amaze, surprise and teach us all a lot about what we do not know so expect some interesting twists and turns in the years ahead!

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