Climate Model Summary

Climate Model Summary Archive: 4 April 2012

Issued on Wednesday 4 April 2012 |

La Niña ends; conditions neutral


As detailed in the ENSO Wrap-Up, the 2011-2012 La Niña has concluded with key indicators in the tropical Pacific Ocean and atmosphere returning to neutral values. The demise of this event is consistent with past La Niña events, with a peak in January and decline in autumn.

The majority of dynamical models surveyed by the Bureau of Meteorology suggest that conditions in the tropical Pacific will remain neutral throughout the winter months, with three models approaching warm conditions towards the end of the forecast period. However, model output should be viewed with reasonable caution at this time of year due to the autumn predictability barrier.

Model Outlooks

The following table summarises the opinion of National Climate Centre (NCC) climatologists regarding the outputs from various long range forecast models. The model set contains seven reputable ocean or coupled ocean/atmosphere climate models that take into account complex physical ocean processes. NCC's interpretation may not necessarily be the same as the organisations producing the model output. You are therefore encouraged to follow the hyperlinks to the various institutions listed in the table.

See About ENSO outlooks for details on the models and a summary of the terms used.

Forecast Start Date 1-3 MONTHS
(Apr 2012 to Jun 2012)
(Jul 2012 to Sep 2012)
Australian Bureau of Meteorology
1 April Neutral Neutral
3 April Neutral Neutral
NASA Goddard GMAO (US)
1 March Neutral Neutral/Warm
System 4
1 March Neutral Neutral
Japan Met. Agency
1 March Neutral Warm
UK Met Office
1 March Neutral Neutral/Warm #
Korean Met. Administration
Unavailable Unavailable Unavailable

# Forecast period ends before September.

Note that some links above may be updated to more recent forecasts than listed here.

POAMA Forecasts

The POAMA model, run at the Bureau of Meteorology, generates a new forecast on day 1 of each month for the following eight months. The most recent model run predicts NINO3.4 will continue its recent warming trend, but remaining within neutral boundaries throughout the forecast period.

The IOD is currently neutral with the latest weekly value at +0.2. POAMA forecasts indicate the IOD is likely to remain neutral over the next few months.

May 2012

The most recent POAMA model run (1 April) predicts the average NINO3.4 temperature anomaly for May 2012 will be 0.2 °C and the frequency distribution is as follows:
below −0.8 °C: 0.0% (Cool)
−0.8 °C to +0.8 °C: 100.0% (Neutral)
above +0.8 °C: 0.0% (Warm)

August 2012

For August 2012, the average NINO3.4 temperature anomaly is 0.4 °C and the frequency distribution is:
below −0.8 °C: 0.0% (Cool)
−0.8 °C to +0.8 °C: 93.3% (Neutral)
above +0.8 °C: 20.0% (Warm)

Similar data for other months can be accessed by following the "POAMA" link in the table above.

Users should exercise caution when interpreting these forecasts and are encouraged to view the actual model outputs by following the web links. Frequent updates of the latest observational data with relevant commentary are available on the Bureau's ENSO Wrap-Up page.

This survey last updated on the 4th of March 2012.
Next update expected 18th of April 2012.

See also the ENSO Wrap-up archive here.

Past climate model summaries