National Oceanic and
Atmospheric Administration
United States Department of Commerce

El Niños & La Niñas from 1986 to the present

El Niños & La Niñas from 1986 to the present

Note the major La Niña in 1988-1999, and major El Niños in 1996-1997 and 2015-2016.

  • Years are marked on the left side, with 1986 at the top and the latest year at the bottom
  • Both panels show sea surface temperature along the equator in Pacific Ocean, with Indonesia on the left (west) and South America on the right (east). The left panel is the sea surface temperature; the right panel is the deviation of surface temperature from normal
  • Note normal seasonal warming (red scallops) and cooling (blue scallops).  El Niño events are the larger red scallops and La Niña events are the larger blue scallops. 

Realtime graphic (below) and Explanation

Monthly TAO/TRITON SST and Anomalies 2S to 2N (longitude-time plot)