SEA SURFACE TEMPERATURE (SST)
During October 2012, the Pacific Ocean continued to reflect borderline ENSO-neutral/ weak El Niño conditions. Equatorial sea surface temperature (SST) anomalies increased across the Pacific Ocean during the latter half of the month, which was also reflected in the Niño indices. The oceanic heat content anomalies also increased slightly in association with the downwelling oceanic Kelvin wave. While the subsurface and surface Pacific Ocean has recently warmed, the tropical atmosphere remained largely consistent with ENSO-neutral.
Relative to last month, the SST model predictions more strongly favor ENSO-neutral, although remaining above-average in the Niño-3.4 region through the Northern Hemisphere winter 2012-13.