Global Setting – February 2012

Mature La Niña conditions are expected to dissipate in early autumn 2012. Lower pressures than normal are expected over the Tasman Sea for March to May as a whole, resulting in more frequent northeast winds than usual over the country. 

Sea surface temperatures 

Seas around New Zealand are likely to be cooler than usual during autumn. 

Differences from average global sea surface temperatures for 5th February to 3rd March 2012. Map courtesy of NOAA Climate Diagnostics Centre (
Monthly values of the Southern Oscillation Index (SOI), a measure of changes in atmospheric pressures across the Pacific, and the 3-month mean (black line). SOI mean values: February SOI +0.1; December to February average +1.2.
Differences from normal February surface temperatures in the seas around New Zealand.