Presentation Title

El Niño/La Niña Southern Oscillation Correlations in Southern California

Start Date

November 2016

End Date

November 2016

Location

HUB 302-#72

Type of Presentation

Poster

Abstract

ENSO (El Niño/La Niña Southern Oscillation) has a large effect on climate patterns in Southern California. Long-term precipitation patterns associated with El Niño may have an impact on flooding, mudslides, crop damage, coastal erosion, and fishery damage. Yet, there is some uncertainty as to its effects on drought, if at all. This study attempts to understand the effect of ENSO and Drought by analyzing long-term precipitation, sea surface temperatures, and the Palmer Drought Index data as a function of time for three locations in Southern California. The above data was acquired from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and the State of California Drought Portal for three ENSO events dating back to 1980 and used to developed time-series analyses to understand trends. There is an apparent correlation between peak Sea Surface temperature (SST) and precipitation during El Niño cycles. Though, the peak precipitation was shifted in time from the peak SST. Changes in drought conditions (based on the Palmer Drought Index) indicates a weak correlation, if at all, with peak El Niño/La Niña cycles based on SST. However, there is no apparent correlation in the most recent El Niño/La Niña cycle, indicating the possibility of other parameters not included in this study. More work needs to be done to address the effect of El Niño/La Niña on drought conditions in California.

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El Niño/La Niña Southern Oscillation Correlations in Southern California

HUB 302-#72

ENSO (El Niño/La Niña Southern Oscillation) has a large effect on climate patterns in Southern California. Long-term precipitation patterns associated with El Niño may have an impact on flooding, mudslides, crop damage, coastal erosion, and fishery damage. Yet, there is some uncertainty as to its effects on drought, if at all. This study attempts to understand the effect of ENSO and Drought by analyzing long-term precipitation, sea surface temperatures, and the Palmer Drought Index data as a function of time for three locations in Southern California. The above data was acquired from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and the State of California Drought Portal for three ENSO events dating back to 1980 and used to developed time-series analyses to understand trends. There is an apparent correlation between peak Sea Surface temperature (SST) and precipitation during El Niño cycles. Though, the peak precipitation was shifted in time from the peak SST. Changes in drought conditions (based on the Palmer Drought Index) indicates a weak correlation, if at all, with peak El Niño/La Niña cycles based on SST. However, there is no apparent correlation in the most recent El Niño/La Niña cycle, indicating the possibility of other parameters not included in this study. More work needs to be done to address the effect of El Niño/La Niña on drought conditions in California.