ENSO variability scenarios

In addition to GCM-based climate scenarios, a statistical technique was developed to derive new scenarios based on changes in the occurrence of the El Niño Southern Oscillation phenomenon (ENSO). The ENSO are sea-surface temperature anomalies that occur periodically off the western coast of South America, with a seasonal timescale. When sea-surface temperatures are above normal, the condition is referred to as El Niño, while if the sea-surface temperatures are below normal, the condition is called La Niña. Table 12.2 shows the years of El Niño and La Niña over the period

Table 12.2. The ENSO years, characterized by either a La Niña or El Niño condition. All other years (68 in total) were considered 'neutral' years.

La Niña

EI Niño

1909

1903

1910

1906

1917

1912

1918

1915

1925

1919

1943

1926

1950

1931

1956

1941

1971

1942

1974

1958

1976

1966

1989

1973

1983

1987

1992

1995

1901-1996. In all, 28 years were considered to be either El Niño or La Niña, while the remainder were considered 'neutral' years.

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