ANALYSIS OF THE LATIN AMERICAN WEST COAST RAINFALL PREDICTABILITY USING AN ENSO INDEX

Luis Cid-Serrano, Sandra M. Ramírez, Eric J. Alfaro, David B. Enfield

Abstract

The objective of this study was to determine the probability of occurrence of wet or dry season events, by means of estimating latitudinal profiles for the association between El Niño Southern-Oscillation and the rainfall along the west coast of Central and South America. The analysis was performed using multinomial linear regression and multinomial logit regression models. We used monthly time series of the Pacific equatorial sea surface temperature (SST), the Niño 3.4 index, a sea level pressure index (SOI) and rainfall anomalies over a 2.5 × 2.5º grid along the west coast of Central and South America, for latitudes starting at 25º N through 45º S, from 1951 to 2011. We defined an ENSO index (NSO) as predictor and rainfall as response. Data was grouped into seasons and then categorized into terciles to construct 3 × 3 non-symmetrical three way contingency tables. As results, we generated latitudinal profiles of the predictability (association) of rainfall for the west coast of Central and South America, using the ENSO phases as predictor.

 

Keywords

El Niño, logit regression, rainfall, ENSO.

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