#AGU15 NASA suggests El Niño will lead to “stronger, wetter” atmospheric rivers to ease California’s drought

California Drought Report #50 – Stronger and Wetter El Niño

Watts Up With That?


The above images are of Sea Surface Temperature Anomalies (SSTA) of the 1997 (left) and 2015 (right) El Niño. The SSTA are derived from the Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) Optimally Interpolated SST that are provided by the Group for High Resolution Sea Surface Temperature (GHRSST) and also use NOAA’s National Center for Environmental Information (NCEI) climatology. The AVHRR instruments have been flying onboard NOAA’s operational polar orbiting satellites since 1981 beginning with NOAA-7 and continuing to present with NOAA-19. To view an animated version of this SST view, click here. For more information on this AVHRR Optimally Interpolated SST data, please visit this page.

NASA Examines Global Impacts of the 2015 El Niño

People the world over are feeling, or soon will feel, the effects of the strongest El Niño event since 1997-98, currently unfolding in the eastern equatorial Pacific Ocean. New satellite observations are beginning to show scientists…

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About Russ Steele

Freelance writer and climate change blogger. Russ spent twenty years in the Air Force as a navigator specializing in electronics warfare and digital systems. After his service he was employed for sixteen years as concept developer for TRW, an aerospace and automotive company, and then was CEO of a non-profit Internet provider for 18 months. Russ's articles have appeared in Comstock's Business, Capitol Journal, Trailer Life, Monitoring Times, and Idaho Magazine.
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5 Responses to #AGU15 NASA suggests El Niño will lead to “stronger, wetter” atmospheric rivers to ease California’s drought

  1. Russ Steele says:


    It looks like the 1860/61 flood occurred during an El Niño event in the Pacific. The paleo-SST was cold. It looks like you are spot on, more rain during El Niño events.


  2. goldminor says:

    I still say that it is going to be the La Nina that brings the heaviest of rains to Northern California. Although the current rain and snow is looking great for now.


    • Russ Steele says:

      Interesting, view and may be true. I will look at the rain totals in La Niña years vs El Niño winters in Nevada City. I will also look at the 1861/62 winter flood when the Sacramento valley filled with 10-20 feet of flood water. According to researchers, these huge floods came about every 150 years in the past. We are over due.

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      • goldminor says:

        Take a look at the great flood of 1964/65, a strong flood in 1955/56, and a moderate flood in 1946/47. Also the semi-biblical rain event of 1996/97. Those all happened during a La Nina event.


      • goldminor says:

        The other connection to the flood years mentioned is that they all occur at, or on either side of a solar minimum. So if we get a major flood next winter as I expect, then that will be indicative of the nearness of the next minimum. If not in 2016/17, then 2017/18.


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