La Nina

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  • Pacific temperature cooler than normal
  • Last 9-12 months
  • Pacific Ocean drops 3-5 degrees
  • Reoccurs every 3-7 years
  • Cause by a decrease of ocean temp and increase in trade wind strength
  • Westward wind gets stronger
  • Allowing low cooler water to surface toward South America
  • Cloud build up in Southeast Asia
  • Wet period in middle eastern U.S
  • Drought in South-eastern U.S
  • Flood in Australia
  • Brings nutrients to south American coast
  • Cooler and snowier Canadian winter
  • Up welling of cool water


El Nino

  • Warm ocean current flow along equator
  • Occur every 4-7 years
  • Trade wind weakens during El Nino
  • Water flows downhill to the east
  • Less warm air rises in the west
  • As a result less wind is created
  • Wind can no longer push warm water from the coast of South America
  • Warm water pushes cooler, unwilling water
  • No up welling to fertilize phytoplankton
  • El Niño produces a lot of evaporation
  • More cloud build up in South America




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