El Niño & La Niña (El Niño-Southern Oscillation)

Vertical perspective map of ocean temperatures across the tropical Pacific Ocean in March 2019 compared to average

El Niño Advisory

A weak El Niño is likely to continue through the Northern Hemisphere summer 2019 (65% chance) and possibly fall (50-55% chance). Weak events can still produce moderate or strong temperature or precipitation impacts in some places, but such impacts are less likely overall during weak events.  

More ENSO status information
Latest official ENSO update
Latest ENSO blog update

(image at left) Difference from average sea surface temperatures at the equator in the tropical Pacific. 

El Niño and La Niña are the warm and cool phases of a recurring climate pattern across the tropical Pacific—the El Niño-Southern Oscillation, or “ENSO” for short.

The pattern can shift back and forth irregularly every two to seven years, and each phase triggers predictable disruptions of temperature, precipitation, and winds.

These changes disrupt the large-scale air movements in the tropics, triggering a cascade of global side effects.

More about El Niño
What is El Niño in a nutshell?
Understanding El Niño (video)
ENSO alert system criteria
ENSO essentials
Educational Resources on ENSO

El Niño is anchored in the tropical Pacific, but it affects seasonal climate "downstream" in the United States. This map shows some of the precipitation and temperature impacts we may experience if El Niño develops this winter as predicted, but not all impacts occur during every event, and their strength and exact location can vary. 

Typical U.S La Niña impacts
Winter temperature and precipitation
Hurricane season impacts
Current outlooks
6-10 day outlook
8-14 day outlook
1-month outlook
3-month outlook

El Niño and La Niña have their strongest impact on global climate during the Northern Hemisphere winter.  The map at left shows some of the precipitation and temperature patterns that might occur this coming winter if El Niño develops as predicted. However, not all impacts appear during every El Niño event.  

More information
ENSO's cascade of global impacts
The Walker Circulation
More maps of global impacts of La Niña and El Niño

A psuedo-3D map of the Pacific Ocean showing the surface of the North Pacific and a vertical cross-section of temperatures at depth near the equator

April 2019 El Niño update: You are here

April 11, 2019

A hefty pool of warm water below the surface of the tropical Pacific boosts the odds that the current weak El Niño will persist through summer 2019 and possibly fall. Summer El Niños can affect the Atlantic hurricane season.  

Read more

(left) Temperature anomalies in the upper 300 meters (2,300 feet) of the tropical Pacific Ocean over the 5-day period centered on April 3, 2019.