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This content will become publicly available on December 1, 2023

Title: More frequent central Pacific El Niño and stronger eastern pacific El Niño in a warmer climate
Abstract El Niño events exhibit rich diversity in their spatial patterns, which can lead to distinct global impacts. Therefore, how El Niño pattern diversity will change in a warmer climate is one of the most critical issues for future climate projections. Based on the sixth Coupled Model Intercomparison Project simulations, we report an inter-model consensus on future El Niño diversity changes. Central Pacific (CP) El Niño events are projected to occur more frequently compared to eastern Pacific (EP) El Niño events. Concurrently, EP El Niño events are projected to increase in amplitude, leading to higher chances of extreme EP El Niño occurrences. We suggest that enhanced upper-ocean stability due to greenhouse warming can lead to a stronger surface-layer response for increasing positive feedbacks, more favorable excitation of CP El Niño. Whereas, enhanced nonlinear atmospheric responses to EP sea surface temperatures can lead to a higher probability of extreme EP El Niño.
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Award ID(s):
2141728 2219257
Publication Date:
Journal Name:
npj Climate and Atmospheric Science
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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