Advertisement

Climate Dynamics

, Volume 51, Issue 5–6, pp 2097–2112 | Cite as

Indian Ocean warming during peak El Niño cools surrounding land masses

  • N. HeroldEmail author
  • A. Santoso
Article

Abstract

Understanding the interactions between the Pacific and other ocean basins during extreme phases of the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) is necessary for explaining its global climate impacts. Here climate model experiments are used to highlight a mechanism by which the characteristic warming of the Indian Ocean during peak El Niño months can cool North Africa and South Asia, an area encompassing over three billion people. It is found that warming of the Indian Ocean during extreme El Niño events leads to broader upper tropospheric geopotential height anomalies than would otherwise occur. This weakens the extratropical Rossby wave response initiated in the tropics and leads to higher pressure and reduced cloud forcing over North Africa and South Asia. Reanalysis data provides empirical support for this mechanism, although it is likely only to be prominent during strong El Niño events when Indian Ocean warming tends to be larger. This dampening effect needs to be taken into account in understanding the climatic impact of extreme El Niño events, which are projected to increase under global warming.

Keywords

El Niño ENSO Indian Ocean Teleconnection 

Notes

Acknowledgements

The authors would like to thank T. Loughran for providing ACCESS model output and V. Dixit for discussions on aqua-planet simulations. NH is supported by Australian Research Council Grant CE110001028. AS is supported by the Australian Research Council and the Earth Science and Climate Change Hub of the Australian Government’s National Environmental Science Programme (NESP). This research/project was undertaken with the assistance of resources and services from the National Computational Infrastructure (NCI), which is supported by the Australian Government. The NCAR Command Language (UCAR/NCAR/CISL/VETS 2016) was used to create figures and process data. The University of Delaware terrestrial air temperature data was provided by the NOAA/OAR/ESRL PSD, Boulder, Colorado, USA, from their Web site at http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/psd/.

Supplementary material

382_2017_4001_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (693 kb)
Supplementary Figure 1. Same as Figure 2 except for the ACCESS climate model and showing 2 m air temperature (skin temperature was not saved in ACCESS simulations) (PDF 692 KB)
382_2017_4001_MOESM2_ESM.pdf (593 kb)
Supplementary Figure 2. Same as Figure 3 except for the ACCESS climate model (PDF 593 KB)
382_2017_4001_MOESM3_ESM.pdf (690 kb)
Supplementary Figure 3. Same as Figure 4 except for the ACCESS climate model (PDF 689 KB)
382_2017_4001_MOESM4_ESM.pdf (784 kb)
Supplementary Figure 4. Same as Figure 2 except b shows the response when El Niño SST anomalies are only added to the tropical Pacific and Indian Oceans (cf. Fig. 2b). c shows the difference between b and a. (PDF 784 KB)
382_2017_4001_MOESM5_ESM.pdf (1.2 mb)
Supplementary Figure 5. 850 mb winds (arrows) and magnitudes (colours) for, a) CTRL, b) PACIFIC-CTRL, c) GLOBAL-CTRL and d) GLOBAL-PACIFIC. Note: Contour levels for each panel differ (PDF 1238 KB)
382_2017_4001_MOESM6_ESM.pdf (808 kb)
Supplementary Figure 6. DJF skin temperature for a) INDIAN-CTRL, b) PACIFIC.INDIAN-CTRL, and c) PACIFIC.INDIAN-INDIAN. Stippling indicates statistical significance at p < 0.1 (SSTs show no significant change due to their constant values between ensembles) (PDF 807 KB)
382_2017_4001_MOESM7_ESM.pdf (50 kb)
Supplementary Figure 7. Time-series for the NINO3.4 index (green), the Basin-Wide Index (BWI; red) and mean terrestrial skin temperature anomalies over North Africa and South Asia (blue). See section 2 for description of the NINO3.4 index. The BWI constitutes detrended anomalous SSTs averaged over the tropical Indian Ocean (20°S–20°N, 40°–100°E; after Saji et al. 2006). Terrestrial skin temperature anomalies for North Africa and South Asia averaged over 10°N - 30°N and 15°E - 120°E. All three time-series reflect standardised mean DJF values. Back squares indicate El Niño years. The difference between the BWI and land temperatures for the extreme El Niño years of 1982/83, 1997/98 and 2015/16 and the moderate El Niño years of 1986/87, 1987/88, 1994/95, 2002/03, 2009/10 and 2014/15 are statistically significant at the 90% level (PDF 50 KB)

References

  1. Alexander MA, Bladé I, Newman M et al (2002) The atmospheric bridge: the influence of ENSO teleconnections on air–sea interaction over the global oceans. J Clim 15:2205–2231.  https://doi.org/10.1175/1520-0442(2002)015<2205:tabtio>2.0.co;2 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Ashok K, Guan Z, Saji NH, Yamagata T (2004) Individual and combined influences of ENSO and the Indian Ocean dipole on the Indian summer monsoon. J Clim 17:3141–3155.  https://doi.org/10.1175/1520-0442(2004)017<3141:IACIOE>2.0.CO;2 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Ashok K, Behera SK, Rao SA et al (2007) El Niño Modoki and its possible teleconnection. J Geophys Res.  https://doi.org/10.1029/2006jc003798 Google Scholar
  4. Bi D, Dix M, Marsland SJ et al (2013) The ACCESS coupled model: description, control climate and evaluation. Aust Meteorol Ocean J 63:41–64CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Cai W, van Rensch P, Cowan T, Hendon HH (2011) Teleconnection pathways of ENSO and the IOD and the mechanisms for impacts on Australian rainfall. J Clim 24:3910–3923.  https://doi.org/10.1175/2011JCLI4129.1 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Cai W, Borlace S, Lengaigne M et al (2014) Increasing frequency of extreme El Nino events due to greenhouse warming. Nat Clim Chang 4:111–116CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Center for International Earth Science Information Network—CIESIN—Columbia University (2015) Gridded population of the world, version 4 (GPWv4): population density adjusted to match 2015 revision of UN WPP country totals.  https://doi.org/10.7927/H4TH8JNR
  8. Changnon SA (1999) Impacts of 1997–98 El Niño generated weather in the United States. Bull Am Meteorol Soc 80:1819–1827.  https://doi.org/10.1175/1520-0477(1999)080<1819:IOENOG>2.0.CO;2 Google Scholar
  9. Chiodi AM, Harrison DE (2012) El Niño impacts on seasonal US atmospheric circulation, temperature, and precipitation anomalies: the OLR-event perspective. J Clim 26:822–837.  https://doi.org/10.1175/JCLI-D-12-00097.1 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Dai A, Wigley TML (2000) Global patterns of ENSO-induced precipitation. Geophys Res Lett 27:1283–1286.  https://doi.org/10.1029/1999GL011140 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Dee DP, Uppala SM, Simmons a J et al (2011) The ERA-interim reanalysis: configuration and performance of the data assimilation system. Q J R Meteorol Soc 137:553–597.  https://doi.org/10.1002/qj.828 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Gent PR, Danabasoglu G, Donner LJ et al (2011) The community climate system model version 4. J Clim 24:4973–4991.  https://doi.org/10.1175/2011jcli4083.1 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Gill AE (1980) Some simple solutions for heat-induced tropical circulation. Q J R Meteorol Soc 106:447–462.  https://doi.org/10.1002/qj.49710644905 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Halpert MS, Ropelewski CF (1992) Surface temperature patterns associated with the southern oscillation. J Clim 5:577–593.  https://doi.org/10.1175/1520-0442(1992)005<0577:STPAWT>2.0.CO;2 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Hoerling M, Kumar A (2003) The perfect ocean for drought. Science (80–) 299:691 LP-694Google Scholar
  16. Horel JD, Wallace JM (1981) Planetary-scale atmospheric phenomena associated with the southern oscillation. Mon Weather Rev 109:813–829.  https://doi.org/10.1175/1520-0493(1981)109<0813:PSAPAW>2.0.CO;2 Google Scholar
  17. Hoskins BJ, Karoly DJ (1981) The steady linear response of a spherical atmosphere to thermal and orographic forcing. J Atmos Sci 38:1179–1196.  https://doi.org/10.1175/1520-0469(1981)038<1179:tslroa>2.0.co;2 Google Scholar
  18. Johnson NC, Kosaka Y (2016) The impact of eastern equatorial Pacific convection on the diversity of boreal winter El Niño teleconnection patterns. Clim Dyn 47:3737–3765.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s00382-016-3039-1 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Kajikawa Y, Wang B, Yang J (2010) A multi-time scale Australian monsoon index. Int J Climatol 30:1114–1120.  https://doi.org/10.1002/joc.1955 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Klein SA, Soden BJ, Lau N-C (1999) Remote sea surface temperature variations during ENSO: evidence for a tropical atmospheric bridge. J Clim 12:917–932.  https://doi.org/10.1175/1520-0442(1999)012<0917:RSSTVD>2.0.CO;2 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Kovats RS, Bouma MJ, Hajat S, et al (2003) El Niño and health. Lancet 362:1481–1489.  https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(03)14695-8 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Kug J-S, Jin F-F, An S-I (2009) Two types of El Niño events: cold tongue El Niño and Warm Pool El Niño. J Clim 22:1499–1515.  https://doi.org/10.1175/2008JCLI2624.1 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Kumar A, Hoerling MP (1997) Interpretation and implications of the observed inter–El Niño variability. J Clim 10:83–91.  https://doi.org/10.1175/1520-0442(1997)010<0083:IAIOTO>2.0.CO;2 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Lau N-C, Leetmaa A, Nath MJ (2006) Attribution of atmospheric variations in the 1997–2003 period to SST anomalies in the Pacific and Indian Ocean basins. J Clim 19:3607–3628.  https://doi.org/10.1175/JCLI3813.1 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Liu Z, Alexander M (2007) Atmospheric bridge, oceanic tunnel, and global climatic teleconnections. Rev Geophys.  https://doi.org/10.1029/2005RG000172 Google Scholar
  26. Matsuura K, Willmott CJ (2015) Terrestrial air temperature: 1900–2014 gridded monthly time series. https://www.esrl.noaa.gov/psd/data/gridded/data.UDel_AirT_Precip.html
  27. McPhaden MJ, Zebiak SE, Glantz MH (2006) ENSO as an integrating concept in earth science. Science 80− 314:1740–1745CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Meyers G, McIntosh P, Pigot L, Pook M (2007) The years of El Niño, La Niña, and interactions with the tropical Indian Ocean. J Clim 20:2872–2880.  https://doi.org/10.1175/JCLI4152.1 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Nakajima K, Yamada Y, Takahashi YO et al (2013) The variety of forced atmospheric structure in response to tropical SST anomaly in the aqua-planet experiments. J Meteorol Soc Jpn Ser II 91A:143–193.  https://doi.org/10.2151/jmsj.2013-A05 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Rasmusson EM, Carpenter TH (1983) The relationship between eastern equatorial Pacific sea surface temperatures and rainfall over India and Sri Lanka. Mon Weather Rev 111:517–528.  https://doi.org/10.1175/1520-0493(1983)111<0517:TRBEEP>2.0.CO;2 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Rayner NA, Parker DE, Horton EB et al (2003) Global analyses of sea surface temperature, sea ice, and night marine air temperature since the late nineteenth century. J Geophys Res Atmos.  https://doi.org/10.1029/2002JD002670 Google Scholar
  32. Risbey JS, Pook MJ, McIntosh PC et al (2009) On the remote drivers of rainfall variability in Australia. Mon Weather Rev 137:3233–3253.  https://doi.org/10.1175/2009MWR2861.1 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Robock A (2000) Volcanic eruptions and climate. Rev Geophys 38:191–219.  https://doi.org/10.1029/1998RG000054 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Roxy MK, Ritika K, Terray P, Masson S (2014) The curious case of Indian Ocean warming. J Clim 27:8501–8509.  https://doi.org/10.1175/JCLI-D-14-00471.1 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Saji NH, Goswami BN, Vinayachandran PN, Yamagata T (1999) A dipole mode in the tropical Indian Ocean. Nature 401:360–363Google Scholar
  36. Saji NH, Xie S-P, Yamagata T (2006) Tropical Indian Ocean variability in the IPCC twentieth-century climate simulations. J Clim 19:4397–4417.  https://doi.org/10.1175/JCLI3847.1 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Santoso A, England MH, Cai W (2012) Impact of Indo-Pacific feedback interactions on ENSO dynamics diagnosed using ensemble climate simulations. J Clim 25:7743–7763.  https://doi.org/10.1175/JCLI-D-11-00287.1 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Schott FA, Xie S-P, McCreary JP (2009) Indian Ocean circulation and climate variability. Rev Geophys.  https://doi.org/10.1029/2007RG000245 Google Scholar
  39. Terray P, Masson S, Prodhomme C et al (2016) Impacts of Indian and Atlantic Oceans on ENSO in a comprehensive modeling framework. Clim Dyn 46:2507–2533.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s00382-015-2715-x CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Tokinaga H, Tanimoto Y (2004) Seasonal transition of SST anomalies in the tropical Indian Ocean during El Nino and Indian Ocean dipole years. J Meteorol Soc Japan Ser II 82:1007–1018.  https://doi.org/10.2151/jmsj.2004.1007 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Trenberth KE, Branstator GW, Karoly D et al (1998) Progress during TOGA in understanding and modeling global teleconnections associated with tropical sea surface temperatures. J Geophys Res Ocean 103:14291–14324.  https://doi.org/10.1029/97JC01444 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. The NCAR Command Language (Version 6.3.0) [Software] (2016) UCAR/NCAR/CISL/TDD, Boulder, CO.  http://dx.doi.org/10.5065/D6WD3XH5
  43. Ummenhofer CC, Sen Gupta A, Briggs PR et al (2010) Indian and Pacific Ocean influences on Southeast Australian drought and soil moisture. J Clim 24:1313–1336.  https://doi.org/10.1175/2010JCLI3475.1 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. van Dijk AIJM, Beck HE, Crosbie RS et al (2013) The millennium drought in southeast Australia (2001–2009): natural and human causes and implications for water resources, ecosystems, economy, and society. Water Resour Res 49:1040–1057.  https://doi.org/10.1002/wrcr.20123 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Webster PJ, Yang S (1992) Monsoon and ENSO: selectively interactive systems. Q J R Meteorol Soc 118:877–926.  https://doi.org/10.1002/qj.49711850705 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Xie S-P, Annamalai H, Schott FA, McCreary JP (2002) Structure and mechanisms of south Indian Ocean climate variability. J Clim 15:864–878.  https://doi.org/10.1175/1520-0442(2002)015<0864:SAMOSI>2.0.CO;2 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Yang J, Liu Q, Xie S-P et al (2007) Impact of the Indian Ocean SST basin mode on the Asian summer monsoon. Geophys Res Lett.  https://doi.org/10.1029/2006GL028571 Google Scholar
  48. Yulaeva E, Wallace JM (1994) The signature of ENSO in global temperature and precipitation fields derived from the microwave sounding unit. J Clim 7:1719–1736.  https://doi.org/10.1175/1520-0442(1994)007<1719:TSOEIG>2.0.CO;2 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Zheng X-T, Xie S-P, Liu Q (2011) Response of the Indian Ocean basin mode and its capacitor effect to global warming. J Clim 24:6146–6164.  https://doi.org/10.1175/2011JCLI4169.1 CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Climate Change Research Centre and ARC Centre of Excellence for Climate System ScienceUniversity of New South WalesSydneyAustralia
  2. 2.Centre for Southern Hemisphere Oceans Research (CSHOR)CSIRO Oceans and AtmosphereHobartAustralia

Personalised recommendations