SST anomalies in the New Zealand region were -0.2°C in November (+0.0 °C in October; Sep–Nov average anomaly 0.0 °C). Local SST anomalies have been decreasing for over a year, after a marked warming in early 2005. This is the first month since January 2005 that SST anomalies have become negative. Sea surface temperatures in the New Zealand region are expected to be below normal, for summer.
El Niño remains in place
Difference from average global SST (click to enlarge).
Monthly SOI values (click to enlarge).
A moderate El Niño event remains in place in the tropical Pacific, and is expected to influence New Zealand’s climate through to at least the end of summer 2006–07.
Outlook for November 2006 to January 2007
Regional outlook (click to enlarge).
Atmospheric circulation patterns for December-February are likely to favour a stronger than average westerly or southwesterly airflow over the country, with below average pressures to the south or southeast of New Zealand.
Temperatures are expected to be average or below average in all regions. Rainfall is expected to be normal or below normal in all regions except the south and west of the South Island, where above normal rainfall is expected. Above normal soil moisture and river flows are expected in the south and west of the South Island, with normal or below normal soil moisture and river flows in all other regions.