La Niña fades to neutral; April the globe's 4th - 7th warmest on record

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 3:12 PM GMT on May 17, 2011

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April 2011 was the globe's 7th warmest April on record, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) National Climatic Data Center (NCDC). NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies rated April the 4th warmest on record, tied with April 2005. April 2011 global ocean temperatures were the 11th warmest on record, and land temperatures were the 6th warmest on record. The UK had its hottest April on record, with rainfall only 21% of average. Huge fires burned through Scotland, England, and Northern Ireland, fanned by strong spring winds.


Figure 1. Departure of temperature from average for April, 2011. Image credit: National Climatic Data Center (NCDC).

La Niña fades to neutral
The La Niña that began in June 2010 is now transitioning to neutral conditions, according to the Climate Prediction Center. Sea surface temperatures (SSTs) in the equatorial Pacific off the coast of South America are now just 0.4°C below average, the first time since June 2010 that these temperatures have not been 0.5°C or more cooler than average, the threshold for a La Niña. However, it is possible that these water could cool a bit again over the next few weeks, so NOAA has not yet declared an official end to this La Niña episode. Equatorial SSTs were 0.5°C below average in the central Pacific, and average to above-average temperatures have emerged in the eastern Pacific. While this signals the end to La Niña, the CPC cautions that the atmosphere is still behaving like La Niña is continuing. An animation of SSTs since February shows the weakening La Niña nicely. Springtime is the most common time for a La Niña event to end; since 1950, half of all La Niñas ended in March, April, or May.

Arctic sea ice 5th lowest on record
Arctic sea ice declined slowly through most of April, and had the 5th lowest extent since satellite record began in 1979, according to the National Snow and Ice Data Center. However, sea ice extent began declining more quickly toward the end of the month, and as of May 16 was the second lowest on record.

I'll have more on the Mississippi River flood next post. If you haven't seen it, read my post, America's Achilles' heel: the Mississippi River Old River Control Structure.

Jeff Masters and Angela Fritz

Angela is a new wunderground hire, with a Masters degree in Meteorology, who will be helping out with my blog and the site's weather education and climate change content.

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Quoting TomTaylor:
Had my first encounter today, wasn't too impressed.

I can troll better than that...not that I'm going to.


Good for a chuckle though :-)
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Quoting JLPR2:


Hmm Missed it.
But I don't think anyone here actually feel offended by JFV or hate him, he just gets a tad annoying at times and is more persistent than the energizer bunny. XD
yea I don't find him offensive either.

He's just trying to get a rise out of us
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Quoting hydrus:
Wuzup K-Man...Its almost here.:)..Those clear skies should allow for rapid heating of the Caribbean waters unless it is windy.


All is well. No clouds, no wind, just serious heat. 90 just about every day. TCHP rising quickly. Yesterday was like a mill pond.
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Quoting Tropicsweatherpr:


Let's see if that dry air to the west of Puerto Rico arrives to stop this rainy pattern that we have been thru.


They are forecasting a new batch of rain for the coming days...
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Levi,the SOI index has tumbled bigtime since mid April when it was at +30,now down to +4.2. Do you think this may be a sign that El Nino may appear or the index will flutuate from now on in Neutral status?

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Quoting pottery:

Hmm!
You dont do a lot of irrigation then at those prices!

Any thoughts on the Season?


I do have a 17,000 gallon cistern under my garage for irrigation but it has been empty now for months as there has been no rain to fill it. Twice a week I water with desal to keep things alive but the chlorine content is a growth stunter.

As for the season, neutral conditions will probably prevail. This in turn will likely lead to more systems traversing the central Caribbean. Overall I am expecting higher than average overall numbers but not excessively so, mayber 14 total.
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383. JLPR2
Quoting TomTaylor:
Had my first encounter today, wasn't too impressed.

I can troll better than that...not that I'm going to.


Hmm Missed it.
But I don't think anyone here actually feel offended by JFV or hate him, he just gets a tad annoying at times and is more persistent than the energizer bunny. XD
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Quoting kmanislander:


Too much over your way and nothing here. Where is the balance in nature eh LOL.

For the past two weeks not a cloud in the sky here.

I noticed that.
Great "Tourist" weather.
Member Since: October 24, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 24061
Quoting AstroHurricane001:
How many people have been killed in floods on the Mississippi River and tributaries including the Missouri and Ohio Rivers this year?


Anybody come across a tally in the news?
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380. JLPR2
Quoting kmanislander:


Too much over your way and nothing here. Where is the balance in nature eh LOL.

For the past two weeks not a cloud in the sky here.


Don't say it too loud, I did that a few weeks ago and ended up with this. Ha! :\
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Quoting kmanislander:
Two days in a row and I miss the return of pre-season JFV.

Quiet conditions dominate the early season breeding grounds. No convection, clear skies and lots of heat. Humidity in the 60's in the NW Caribbean. Unbelievably low for the tropics
Had my first encounter today, wasn't too impressed.

I can troll better than that...not that I'm going to.
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Quoting Levi32:


That will likely change after the deep trough lifts out of the SE US, allowing the ITCZ and monsoon trough to lift northward into the Caribbean.


Got my fingers crossed.We really need rain big time.
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Quoting kmanislander:
Two days in a row and I miss the return of pre-season JFV.

Quiet conditions dominate the early season breeding grounds. No convection, clear skies and lots of heat. Humidity in the 60's in the NW Caribbean. Unbelievably low for the tropics
Wuzup K-Man...Its almost here.:)..Those clear skies should allow for rapid heating of the Caribbean waters unless it is windy.
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 20529
Quoting JLPR2:


Wanna trade?
91% humidity
Rainy, cloudy skies
74.9F

Yo, everyone! XD


Too much over your way and nothing here. Where is the balance in nature eh LOL.

For the past two weeks not a cloud in the sky here.
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Quoting kmanislander:


You got it. About 2 cents a gallon

Hmm!
You dont do a lot of irrigation then at those prices!

Any thoughts on the Season?
Member Since: October 24, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 24061
Quoting kmanislander:
Two days in a row and I miss the return of pre-season JFV.

Quiet conditions dominate the early season breeding grounds. No convection, clear skies and lots of heat. Humidity in the 60's in the NW Caribbean. Unbelievably low for the tropics


That will likely change after the deep trough lifts out of the SE US, allowing the ITCZ and monsoon trough to lift northward into the Caribbean.
Member Since: November 24, 2005 Posts: 635 Comments: 26562
AAO:

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372. JLPR2
Quoting kmanislander:
Two days in a row and I miss the return of pre-season JFV.

Quiet conditions dominate the early season breeding grounds. No convection, clear skies and lots of heat. Humidity in the 60's in the NW Caribbean. Unbelievably low for the tropics


Wanna trade?
91% humidity
Rainy, cloudy skies
74.9F

Yo, everyone! XD
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Quoting pottery:

Incredible!
Where does your water come from, DeSal?


You got it. About 2 cents a gallon
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Quoting kmanislander:
Two days in a row and I miss the return of pre-season JFV.

Quiet conditions dominate the early season breeding grounds. No convection, clear skies and lots of heat. Humidity in the 60's in the NW Caribbean. Unbelievably low for the tropics

Incredible!
Where does your water come from, DeSal?
Member Since: October 24, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 24061
Quoting sunlinepr:


Let's see if that dry air to the west of Puerto Rico arrives to stop this rainy pattern that we have been thru.
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Two days in a row and I miss the return of pre-season JFV.

Quiet conditions dominate the early season breeding grounds. No convection, clear skies and lots of heat. Humidity in the 60's in the NW Caribbean. Unbelievably low for the tropics
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Quoting Tazmanian:



he likes makeing new names has soon has he gets a banned
To add to that, he tends to insult those he doesn't like in Spanish. Most people here don't understand Spanish, so logically he gets away with it.
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well i'm off everyone have a Great night....

I will check back in soon and thanks for the warm welcome All :o)



Taco :o)
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its good too be king
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Quoting WaterWitch11:
taco2me61, i got to go to gulfport, ms a couple of months ago and it is so beautiful. its nothing like our beaches. i really can't wait to go back.


It is Very Beautiful over there..... I go as often as I can.....


Taco :o)
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Quoting hurricaneben:


I hear you're a troll, what did you do?



he likes makeing new names has soon has he gets a banned
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heh heh



NHC2011 got a banned LOL
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Patiently waiting for the mythical "rainy" season to arrive in NE FL

Link
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taco2me61, i got to go to gulfport, ms a couple of months ago and it is so beautiful. its nothing like our beaches. i really can't wait to go back.
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Quoting WaterWitch11:
and april acted a lot like may should have. it will be interesting to see how the rest of the year pans out.


"Agreed"

Last year it was the "High" that was dominate now so far this year it has been the "Low"....


Taco :o)
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and april acted a lot like may should have. it will be interesting to see how the rest of the year pans out.
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Quoting hydrus:
Today was raw here on the plateau too. Got down to 40 degrees last night. Only got up to 58 today with overcast skies, wind and drizzle...


I'm not complaining because we have been in the 90's most of April but to go from Lows at night in the upper 60's to mid 40's and daytime highs in the 90's and today being 75 well there no wonder why we all are not "sick"....

Taco :o)
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Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
ya know if you stop acting like such a dufus and stop giving yourself away each and every time maybe you would stand a chance but till then you get whats coming
what do you mean? It's not like he's trying to go by unnoticed...

This guy is just a troll. All he wants is attention.


And btw, ya'll are giving him exactly what he wants.
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Here is another graphic apart from Jason's one that shows how warm are the Atlantic waters.I have to add that there are some cool spots including the northern GOM and the area near Puerto Rico. I understand that a front moved thru the GOM recently that cooled those waters,and I can say why the waters around Puerto Rico haved cooled,and that is all the cloud cover this area has been thru since last saturday.

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Quoting taco2me61:


I'm kinda wishing for some rain here in Lower Alabama. We have not had that much here, it's all been North of us and of course west to the Miss River has been real Bad....

Then I want to be careful what I wish for....

Then you ask is it really May 17th? and I'm not so sure we had a Low Temp in the upper 40's last night and again tonight..... Now thats crazy even for us here on the Gulf Coast this time of year.....

Taco :o)
Today was raw here on the plateau too. Got down to 40 degrees last night. Only got up to 58 today with overcast skies, wind and drizzle...
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 20529
A-lot of moisture in the upper levels out there...
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 20529
Quoting WaterWitch11:
it has been raining for the last 24 hours here in northern cali.
it can't be may 17th................


I'm kinda wishing for some rain here in Lower Alabama. We have not had that much here, it's all been North of us and of course west to the Miss River has been real Bad....

Then I want to be careful what I wish for....

Then you ask is it really May 17th? and I'm not so sure we had a Low Temp in the upper 40's last night and again tonight..... Now thats crazy even for us here on the Gulf Coast this time of year.....

Taco :o)
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Quoting NHC2011:


Why, my friend, =(.
ya know if you stop acting like such a dufus and stop giving yourself away each and every time maybe you would stand a chance but till then you get whats coming
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Quoting WaterWitch11:
it has been raining for the last 24 hours here in northern cali.
it can't be may 17th................
rained here in San Diego (S California) today too.

The rain wasn't too unusual, but it was unseasonably cold... for mid May
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Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:


why keeper, you are looking absolutely radiate tonight! lol
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heh heh heh


yup been raining here too in N CA
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it has been raining for the last 24 hours here in northern cali.
it can't be may 17th................
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Quoting hurricaneben:
What are the chances of us seeing Arlene in the next 2 weeks?
low.

If any storms form over the next two weeks it will be in the final days, since the models aren't hinting at anything right now.
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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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