Quicky ENSO Update – September 15, 2014

Weekly NINO3.4 sea surface temperature anomalies (week of September 10) are back above the +0.5 deg C threshold of an El Niño. NINO1+2 sea surface temperature anomalies have dropped recently, but they should rise again as the new downwelling (warm) Rossby wave makes its way east and the warm water is drawn to the surface.

Figure 1

Figure 1

# # #

Figure 2

Figure 2

A map showing the NINO regions is here.

The sea surface temperature anomalies for the NINO3.4 region in the eastern equatorial Pacific (5S-5N, 170E-120E) are a commonly used index for the strength, frequency and duration of El Niño and La Nina events. We keep an eye on the sea surface temperatures there because El Niño and La Niña events are the primary cause of the yearly variations in global sea surface temperatures AND they are the primary cause of the long-term warming of global sea surface temperatures over the past 30 years.

The NINO1+2 region is in the far eastern tropical Pacific, just south and west of the Galapagos Islands. We monitor sea surface temperatures there to see if an El Niño is impacting the eastern equatorial Pacific as well. Those East Pacific El Niños are stronger than its siblings in the Central Pacific.

For more info see the most recent full update The 2014 15 El Niño – Part 16 – September 2014 Update – Still Seeing Mixed Signals.


The Sea Surface Temperature anomaly data used in this post is available through the NOAA NOMADS website (Both NOMAD2 and NOMAD3 websites have been down recently, which leaves us with NOMAD1):



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 2014-15 El Nino Series, ENSO Update. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Quicky ENSO Update – September 15, 2014

  1. Thanks, Bob.
    This coming El Niño is shy, it would seem.

  2. Jeff Bennett says:

    Does the hurricane in Baja California have anything to do with the ocean temps and El Nino possibility. Is it an indication that we will have an El Nino?

  3. jbennett says:

    Does the hurricane in Baja California have any relationship to a potential El Nino?

  4. Bob Tisdale says:

    Hi Jeff: According to NOAA, during El Nino conditions, there are more East Pacific hurricanes due to less wind shear there. See the NOAA ENSO blog post from May:
    Also see the NOAA webpage here:


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