Global Setting – February 2013

The equatorial Pacific Ocean remains in a neutral state (neither El Niño nor La Niña). International guidance indicates that neutral conditions are very likely to continue over the next three months (March-May). Lower pressures than usual are likely over the north Tasman Sea during autumn, with slightly higher pressures than usual over and to the south of New Zealand. 

Sea Surface Temperature

Sea surface temperatures around New Zealand are currently above average (especially near the South Island and to the south of the country), and this is forecast to continue for the coming three months. 

Differences from average global sea surface temperatures for 3rd of February to 2nd of March 2013. 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 -0.5; December to February average -0.5.
Differences from normal February surface temperatures in the seas around New Zealand.