ISSUED AT: 05:32 PM
Date: Thursday 8th of August 2019
Weak El Niño of 2018-2019 has ended
Neutral El Niño/Southern Oscillation (ENSO) To Persist Throughout Rest Of The 2019 Wet Season
During July 2019, sea surface temperatures (SSTs) in the Eastern and Central Equatorial Pacific Ocean cooled to ENSO-neutral levels (meaning neither El Niño nor La Niña) and have remained at neutral levels during August 2019. Accompanying temperature anomalies of the subsurface waters have also been nearaverage, while the patterns of most atmospheric variables also show ENSO-neutral conditions. The overall consensus by climate model forecasts along with climate experts assessment of the environmental conditions favour ENSO-neutral to persist throughout the rest of year. As such, the Meteorological Services Division ENSO Monitor switches to neutral.
What does this mean for Trinidad and Tobago?
This means other climate drivers, including SST patterns in the waters of the tropical North Atlantic Ocean to the east of the islands are likely to remain as the key influencers of Trinidad and Tobago’s climate for the rest of the wet season and months following.
Guide: An El Niño (La Niña) is declared when the average SSTs in the central and eastern equatorial Pacific Ocean become at least 0.5oC warmer than average ( -0.5oC cooler than average) in the preceding month and the warming (cooling) is expected to persist for five consecutive overlapping three-month periods. This must occur together with a corresponding change in the overlying atmospheric circulation. The TTMS El Niño/La Niña Watch is activated when the ENSO Outlook indicates a probability of approximately 50% chance or greater for development of El Niño or La Niña.