NOAA's Climate Prediction Center today issued an El Niño Watch indicating a 50% chance of El Niño developing during the summer or fall. El Niño, which is marked by warmer-than-average sea surface temperatures in the eastern Pacific Ocean near the equator, is known for influencing weather across the U.S. and other parts of the globe.
Currently, the Climate Prediction Center is monitoring a very warm pool of water in the Western Pacific, and is seeing this pool move eastward, which will likely warm the Eastern Pacific in the coming months. The warm water in the Western Pacific is shown here using the three-dimensional GODAS ocean temperature data.
If the El Niño conditions strengthen, a tongue of warmer-than-average water will be seen in sea surface temperature data. You can monitor these conditions, as well as past El Niño and La Niña events, in NOAA View.