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HOME > El Niño Monitoring > El Niño Outlook

El Niño Outlook ( June 2016 - December 2016 )

Last Updated: 10 June 2016
( Next update will be on 11 July 2016 )

[El Niño / La Niña]

In May 2016, the NINO.3 SST was near normal with a deviation of +0.1°C (Table and Fig.1). The five-month running mean of the NINO.3 SST deviation was +0.5°C or above for 22 consecutive months up to March. SSTs were above normal in the western and central equatorial Pacific in May, and were near normal in the eastern part, where below normal values were also observed in some areas (Fig.2 and Fig.4). Subsurface temperatures were below normal in most regions from the western to the eastern part of the equatorial Pacific (Fig.3 and Fig.5). Atmospheric convective activity was near normal near the date line in the equatorial Pacific, and easterly winds in the lower troposphere (trade winds) were near normal (Fig.6, Fig.7 and Fig.8). These oceanic and atmospheric conditions indicate that the El Niño conditions faded away in spring 2016.

The subsurface cold waters observed in May from the western to the eastern equatorial Pacific are expected to migrate eastward in the months ahead, and a tendency toward even cooler-than-normal sea surface conditions will be seen in the central and eastern equatorial Pacific. Outputs from JMA's El Niño prediction model suggest that the NINO.3 SST will be below normal in boreal summer and autumn (Fig.9). In conclusion, it is likely that La Niña conditions will develop in summer and will continue to autumn.

[Western Pacific and Indian Ocean]

The area-averaged SST in the tropical western Pacific (NINO.WEST) region was near normal in May (Fig.1). It is likely that the NINO.WEST SST will be above normal in boreal summer and autumn (Fig.10).

The area-averaged SST in the tropical Indian Ocean (IOBW) region has been above normal since March 2015 (Fig.1). The value is likely to move gradually closer to normal in boreal summer and autumn (Fig.11).


The ongoing warmer-than-normal SST conditions in IOBW region are considered to have caused the warmer-than-normal conditions observed from Western Japan to Okinawa-Amami in May 2016.

In the same month, warmer-than-normal conditions in southern part of West Africa, the western part of India, and the eastern part of East Asia, from Southeast Asia to the north-eastern part of Australia, from Central America to the eastern part of South America, and in the western part of Canada were consistent with common patterns observed in past warmer-than-normal SST conditions in IOBW region.

Composite analyses for ENSO impacts are available in .

Produced by Climate Prediction Division, Japan Meteorological Agency

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