CURRENT SITUATION OF ENSO
The tropical Pacific is currently in ‘Neutral’ state of ENSO. Trade winds and the southern oscillation index (SOI) are well within the neutral range with equatorial central sea surface temperatures (SST) being slightly warmer than normal.
Noticeably, SST in the far eastern which were above normal near South American coast during March and April have cooled during May and June. The warmth of this region was not sustained due to decrease in strength of the trade winds which also decreased the potential of an El Nino event to develop.
All eight (8) international models surveyed suggest the tropical Pacific Ocean temperatures especially in the Nino 3.4 region are most likely to continue in NEUTRAL phase in the second half of 2017. This has been a substantial shift in
comparison to the 7/8 climate models anticipated a potential El Nino in April.
(El Nino is one major driver of Samoa's rainfall and temperature. El Nino could affect the normal rainfall pattern in Samoa generally resulting in reduced rainfall or drought. Day time temperatures tend to be hotter than normal over the country. Past El Nino events have been one cause of Forest Fires in Asau (North West of Savaii island). Different parts of the country may experience varying rainfall
impacts. As a consequence of this rainfall deficit, the following sectors could be severely impacted: Water, Agriculture, Health, Energy (Hydropower), Tourist (Accommodations Facilities) and Forestry.)