El Niņo situation and prospects
3 December 2002
The major monitoring systems (IRI, the International Research Institute for Climate Prediction, BOM, the Australian Bureau of Meteorology, NOAA/CPC, the US Climate Prediction Center) confirm that there is a virtually 100% probability of El Niņo conditions to persist for the remainder of 2002 and into early 2003. The forecasts are based on both Pacific Ocean sea surface temperature and the associated atmospheric circulation pattern, in particular a reversal of the trade winds.
Most of the computer predictions are now in favour of neutral conditions in five months' time, indicating neutral conditions in April 2003.
It is most likely that this will remain a moderate El Niņo, which is significantly weaker than the 1997-98 event.
Seasonal forecasts for January-February-March indicate typical patterns correlated to the El Niņo event.
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