18 Jan 2022
18 Jan 2022
Status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal WCD.

Modulation of the ENSO teleconnection to the North Atlantic by the tropical North Atlantic and Caribbean

Jake W. Casselman1, Bernat Jiménez-Esteve1, and Daniela I. V. Domeisen1,2 Jake W. Casselman et al.
  • 1ETH Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland
  • 2University of Lausanne, Lausanne, Switzerland

Abstract. El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) can bring about inter-basin interactions, whereby Pacific sea surface temperature anomalies (SSTAs) may influence the North Atlantic European (NAE) region. However, ENSO's overall influence on the NAE remains unclear. One potential reason for this uncertainty may arise due to the region being dominated by several different mechanisms. Here we focus on one potential region, namely the Tropical North Atlantic (TNA), and determine how the SSTAs modulate the ENSO teleconnection towards the NAE region. As numerous pathways from the TNA may exist for this modulation, we further center our analysis onto the Caribbean region and Walker cells. We force an idealized atmospheric circulation model with three different seasonally varying sea surface temperature patterns that represent an ENSO event with or without the influence of the Atlantic. Our results demonstrate that modulation of the NAE region by the TNA SSTA and Caribbean region occurs in the boreal spring and summer following an ENSO event. In boreal spring, this modulation is primarily through a propagating Rossy wave train, while in the summer, the TNA's influence is nonlinear and tends to strengthen the ENSO influence over the NAE sector. Overall, this study offers a deeper understanding of the inter-basin interactions of the Walker cell following an ENSO event and the central role of tropical Atlantic SSTAs in modulating the teleconnection to the NAE region.

Jake W. Casselman et al.

Status: final response (author comments only)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on wcd-2021-82', Anonymous Referee #1, 06 Feb 2022
  • RC2: 'Comment on wcd-2021-82', Anonymous Referee #2, 17 Feb 2022
  • AC1: 'Comment on wcd-2021-82', Jake Casselman, 29 Apr 2022

Jake W. Casselman et al.

Jake W. Casselman et al.


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Short summary
Using an atmospheric general circulation model, we analyze how the Tropical North Atlantic modulates the El Niño Southern Oscillation teleconnection towards the North Atlantic European region. Our results demonstrate a modulation originating from anomalous sea surface temperatures that cause different responses over the Caribbean region. Furthermore, our study offers a deeper understanding of the inter-basin interactions and the central role of the tropical Atlantic in modulating the connection.