June 2011 Sea Surface Temperature (SST) Anomaly Update

UPDATE: I’ve corrected the “Rest-Of-The-World” graph under the heading of The East Pacific Versus the Rest Of The World.

THE EAST PACIFIC VERSUS THE REST OF THE WORLD

Again this month I’m going to start the update with the two graphs that represent the East Pacific and the Rest-Of-The-World Sea Surface Temperature (SST) anomalies. I’ve made changes to both. They used to be smoothed with a 13-month running-average filter, but the smoothing really didn’t make sense in a monthly update, so I’m now presenting the monthly data for these two subsets unsmoothed. And I’ve revised the periods used for the average Rest-Of-The-World SST anomalies between the significant El Niño events of 1982/83, 1986/87/88, 1997/98, and 2009/10. Using the NOAA Oceanic Nino Index(ONI) to determine the official months of those El Niño events, I shifted those El Niño periods by six months to accommodate the lag between NINO3.4 SST anomalies and the response of the Rest-Of-The-World SST anomalies, then deleted the corresponding Rest-Of-The-World data. I then averaged the Rest-Of-The-World SST anomalies between those El Niño-related gaps.

These datasets were first discussed in the post Sea Surface Temperature Anomalies – East Pacific Versus The Rest Of The World.Both datasets have been adjusted for the impacts of volcanic aerosols. The global oceans were divided into these two subsets to illustrate two facts. First, the linear trend of the volcano-adjusted East Pacific (90S-90N, 180-80W) SST anomalies since the start of the Reynolds OI.v2 dataset is basically flat. The East Pacific linear trend varies with each monthly update, so with ENSO-related SST anomalies varying from La Niña toward ENSO neutral, that trend will also rise slightly each month. But it won’t rise significantly up through the next El Niño.

(3) Volcano-Adjusted East Pacific (90S-90N, 180-80W)

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And second, the volcano-adjusted SST anomalies for the Rest of the World (90S-90N, 80W-180) rise in very clear steps, in response to the significant 1986/87/88 and 1997/98 El Niño/La Niña events. It also appears as though the SST anomalies of this dataset are making another shift in response to the most recent ENSO event. For those who are interested in the actual trends of the SST anomalies between the 1986/87/88 and 1997/98 El Niño events and between the 1997/98 and 2009/10 El Niño events refer to Figure 4 in Does The Sea Surface Temperature Record Support The Hypothesis Of Anthropogenic Global Warming?

CORRECTION: The original scaling was wrong on the volcanic aerosol adjustment for the following graph. I had incorrectly used a factor of 1.0 instead of the 1.43 that I had determined in the linked post. My error did not change the intent of the graph. It only impacted the appearance of the graph and the values of the period averages. I’ve replaced the graph with the corrected version.

(4) Volcano-Adjusted Rest of the World (90S-90N, 80W-180)

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The “Nov 2010 to Present” average varies with each update. As noted in the linked post, it will be interesting to see where that SST anomaly average settles out, if it does, before the next significant El Niño drives them higher.

Of course, something could shift. Will the upward ratcheting continue when the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation decides to turn around and start its decline? The upward steps would not continue in the North Atlantic, but would the AMO impact the upward steps in other portions of the globe?

The SST anomalies of the East Pacific Ocean, or approximately 33% of the surface area of the global oceans, have risen very little since 1982 based on the linear trend. And between upward shifts, the SST anomalies for the rest of the world (67% of the global ocean surface area) remain relatively flat. Anthropogenic forcings are said to be responsible for most of the rise in global surface temperatures over this period, but the SST anomaly graphs of those two areas prompt a two-part question: Since 1982, what anthropogenic global warming processes would overlook the sea surface temperatures of 33% of the global oceans and have an impact on the other 67% but only in response to the significant El Niño events of 1986/87/88, 1997/98 and 2009/10?

MONTHLY SST ANOMALY MAP

The following is a Global map of Reynolds OI.v2 SST anomalies for June 2011 downloaded from the NOMADS website. The contour levels are set at 0.5 deg C, and white is set at zero.

June 2011 SST Anomalies Map (Global SST Anomaly = +0.168 deg C)

MONTHLY OVERVIEW

Monthly NINO3.4 SST anomalies are very close to zero. The Monthly NINO3.4 SST Anomaly is -0.034 deg C.

The SST anomalies in both the Northern and Southern Hemispheres rose this month. The only basins with declines were the North and South Atlantic Oceans. Global SST anomalies rose +0.037 deg C. The Global SST anomalies are presently at +0.168 deg C.

(1) Global

Monthly Change = +0.037 deg C

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(2) NINO3.4 SST Anomaly

Monthly Change = +0.311 deg C

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EAST INDIAN-WEST PACIFIC

The SST anomalies in the East Indian and West Pacific rose this month.

I’ve added this dataset in an attempt to draw attention to what appears to be the upward steps in response to significant El Niño events that are followed by La Niña events.

(5) East Indian-West Pacific (60S-65N, 80E-180)

Monthly Change = +0.067 deg C

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Further information on the upward “step changes” that result from strong El Niño events, refer to my posts from a year ago Can El Nino Events Explain All of the Global Warming Since 1976? – Part 1 and Can El Nino Events Explain All of the Global Warming Since 1976? – Part 2

And for the discussions of the processes that cause the rise, refer to More Detail On The Multiyear Aftereffects Of ENSO – Part 2 – La Nina Events Recharge The Heat Released By El Nino Events AND…During Major Traditional ENSO Events, Warm Water Is Redistributed Via Ocean Currents -AND- More Detail On The Multiyear Aftereffects Of ENSO – Part 3 – East Indian & West Pacific Oceans Can Warm In Response To Both El Nino & La Nina Events

The animations included in the post La Niña Is Not The Opposite Of El Niño – The Videosfurther help explain the reasons why East Indian and West Pacific SST anomalies can rise in response to both El Niño and La Niña events.

NOTE ABOUT THE DATA

The MONTHLY graphs illustrate raw monthly OI.v2 SST anomaly data from December 1981 to June 2011, as it is presented by the NOAA NOMADS website linked at the end of the post.

MONTHLY INDIVIDUAL OCEAN AND HEMISPHERIC SST UPDATES

(6) Northern Hemisphere

Monthly Change = +0.045 deg C

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(7) Southern Hemisphere

Monthly Change = +0.030 deg C

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(8) North Atlantic (0 to 75N, 78W to 10E)

Monthly Change = -0.013 deg C

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(9) South Atlantic (0 to 60S, 70W to 20E)

Monthly Change = -0.094 deg C

Note: I discussed the upward shift in the South Atlantic SST anomalies in the post The 2009/10 Warming Of The South Atlantic. It does not appear as though the South Atlantic will return to the level it was at before that surge, and where it had been since the late 1980s. That is, it appears to have made an upward step and continues to rise. Why? Dunno—yet.

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(10) North Pacific (0 to 65N, 100E to 90W)

Monthly Change = +0.021 Deg C

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(11) South Pacific (0 to 60S, 120E to 70W)

Monthly Change = +0.042 deg C

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(12) Indian Ocean (60S to 30N, 20E to 120E)

Monthly Change = +0.094 deg C

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(13) Arctic Ocean (65N to 90N)

Monthly Change = +0.059 deg C

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(14) Southern Ocean (90S-60S)

Monthly Change = +0.020 deg C

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WEEKLY SST ANOMALIES

The weekly NINO3.4 Sea Surface Temperature (SST) Anomalies rose above zero during the week centered on June 29, 2011, but have dropped below zero again during the more recent week centered on July 6, 2011. The NINO3.4 SST anomaly based on the week centered on July 6, 2011 is -0.147 deg C.

(15) Weekly NINO3.4 SST Anomalies

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The weekly global SST anomalies are at +0.146 deg C.

(16) Weekly Global

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SOURCE

The Optimally Interpolated Sea Surface Temperature Data (OISST) are available through the NOAA National Operational Model Archive & Distribution System (NOMADS).

http://nomad3.ncep.noaa.gov/cgi-bin/pdisp_sst.sh

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About Bob Tisdale

Research interest: the long-term aftereffects of El Niño and La Nina events on global sea surface temperature and ocean heat content. Author of the ebook Who Turned on the Heat? and regular contributor at WattsUpWithThat.
This entry was posted in SST Update. Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to June 2011 Sea Surface Temperature (SST) Anomaly Update

  1. Don B says:

    Commenting on the obvious…

    The spikes which preceded the plateaus for the rest-of-the-world were rising, until the most recent spike, which is less than the 1998 peak (graph 4). I will be waiting with interest until the next spike, to see if this is the beginning of a rollover to cooler/stable SST, or not.

  2. timetochooseagain says:

    Bob, off topic, but have you seen the new Hadley Center piece that is adjusting the sea surface temps for the “bucket” issues?

    Discussed here:
    http://climateaudit.org/2011/07/11/more-misrepresentations-from-realclimate/
    I know that you generally focus on the satellite era SST’s but it might be worth re-examining the early to mid twentieth century data if and when the new adjustments are officially released.

  3. Bob Tisdale says:

    timetochooseagain: Thanks for the link. I had not run across it yet.

  4. Pingback: Sea surface temps…flat | pindanpost

  5. Bob Tisdale says:

    xr6turbo: Thanks for the link.

  6. Pingback: >LINKS TO SST ANOMALY UPDATES | Bob Tisdale – Climate Observations

  7. Pingback: More ‘science’ fiction… | pindanpost

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