Different modes of variability over the Tasman Sea: Implications for regional climate

Stefan Liess, Arjun Kumar, Peter K. Snyder, Jaya Kawale, Karsten Steinhaeuser, Frederick H.M. Semazzi, Auroop R. Ganguly, Nagiza F. Samatova, Vipin Kumar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


A new approach is used to detect atmospheric teleconnections without being bound by orthogonality (such as empirical orthogonal functions). This method employs negative correlations in a global dataset to detect potential teleconnections. One teleconnection occurs between the Tasman Sea and the Southern Ocean. It is related to El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO), the Indian Ocean dipole (IOD), and the southern annular mode (SAM). This teleconnection is significantly correlated with SAM during austral summer, fall, and winter, with IOD during spring, and with ENSO in summer. It can thus be described as a hybrid between these modes. Given previously found relationships between IOD and ENSO, and IOD's proximity to the teleconnection centers, correlations to IOD are generally stronger than to ENSO. Increasing pressure over the Tasman Sea leads to higher (lower) surface temperature over eastern Australia (the southwestern Pacific) in all seasons and is related to reduced surface temperature over Wilkes Land and Adélie Land in Antarctica during fall and winter. Precipitation responses are generally negative over New Zealand. For one standard deviation of the teleconnection index, precipitation anomalies are positive over Australia in fall, negative over southern Australia in winter and spring, and negative over eastern Australia in summer. When doubling the threshold, the size of the anomalous high-pressure center increases and annual precipitation anomalies are negative over southeastern Australia and northern New Zealand. Eliassen-Palm fluxes quantify the seasonal dependence of SAM, ENSO, and IOD influences. Analysis of the dynamical interactions between these teleconnection patterns can improve prediction of seasonal temperature and precipitation patterns in Australia and New Zealand.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)8466-8486
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Climate
Issue number22
StatePublished - 2014

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 American Meteorological Society.


  • Annular mode
  • Australia
  • Drought
  • ENSO
  • Southern Ocean
  • Teleconnections


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