EGU21-9436, updated on 04 Mar 2021
EGU General Assembly 2021
© Author(s) 2021. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Impact of Equatorial Atlantic Variability on ENSO Predictive Skill

Eleftheria Exarchou1, Pablo Ortega1, Maria Belén Rodrıguez de Fonseca2, Teresa Losada Doval2,4, Irene Polo Sanchez2, and Chloé Prodhomme1,3,5
Eleftheria Exarchou et al.
  • 1Barcelona Supercomputing Centre , Spain (
  • 2Departamento de Fisica de la Tierra y Astrofisica, Universidad Computense de Madrid, Madrid, Spain
  • 3Group of Meteorology, Universitat de Barcelona (UB), Barcelona, Spain
  • 4Instituto de Geociencias, IGEO (CSIC-UCM)
  • 5CNRM, Université de Toulouse, Me ́te ́o-France, CNRS, Toulouse, France

El Niño–Southern Oscillation (ENSO) is a key mode of climate variability with worldwide climate impacts. Recent studies have highlighted the impact of other tropical oceans on its variability. In particular, observations have demonstrated that summer Atlantic Niños (Niñas) favor the development of Pacific Niñas (Niños) the following winter, but it is unclear how well climate models capture this teleconnection and its role in defining the seasonal predictive skill of ENSO. Here we use an ensemble of seasonal forecast systems to demonstrate that a better representation of equatorial Atlantic variability in summer and its lagged teleconnection mechanism with the Pacific relates to enhanced predictive capacity of autumn/winter ENSO. An additional sensitivity study further shows that correcting SST variability in equatorial Atlantic improves different aspects of forecast skill in the Tropical Pacific, boosting ENSO skill. This study thus emphasizes that new efforts to improve the representation of equatorial Atlantic variability, a region with long standing systematic model biases, can foster predictive skill in the region, the Tropical Pacific and beyond, through the global impacts of ENSO.

How to cite: Exarchou, E., Ortega, P., Rodrıguez de Fonseca, M. B., Losada Doval, T., Polo Sanchez, I., and Prodhomme, C.: Impact of Equatorial Atlantic Variability on ENSO Predictive Skill, EGU General Assembly 2021, online, 19–30 Apr 2021, EGU21-9436,, 2021.

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