The globally averaged sea surface temperature in 2013 was among the 10 highest on record, with the North Pacific reaching an historic high temperature. ENSO-neutral conditions and a negative Pacific Decadal Oscillation pattern had the largest impacts on global sea surface temperature in 2013.
El Niño and La Niña conditions occur when abnormally warm or cool waters accumulate in tropical latitudes of the central and eastern Pacific Ocean. The Oceanic Nino Index is the tool NOAA scienitsts use to watch for these temperature changes.
You're not the only one wondering if we will see El Niño grow or continue into this coming winter 2015. How useful are March winds and subsurface temperatures across the tropical Pacific Ocean in predicting winter El Niño or La Niña states?