El-Nino/Southern Oscillation and streamflow patterns in South-east Australia

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The relationship between El-Nino/Southern-Oscillation (ENSO) and streamflow patterns in south-east Australia is investigated using an empirical method based on harmonic analysis and the detection of successive months with the same streamflow anomaly. The results indicate that below-normal streamflow in the southernparts of east Australia tends to be associated with ENSO. Further north, and east of the divide, the signal is poorly defined. The season of below-normal streamflow begins fairly early in the ENSO cycle around February during the ENSO year and extends for about one year. The signal is strongest around September. The association between ENSO and streamflow anomalies is stronger for Tasmania and catchments which drain inland into the Murray River compared to the coastal catchments which drain into the Pacific Ocean. The ENSO-streamflow relationship identified here has implications on the prediction of streamflow anomaly and on the management of water resources.


Australia; El Niño–Southern Oscillation (ENSO); Forcasting; Hydroclimatology; Streamflow; Tasmania


Climate | Environmental Sciences | Fresh Water Studies


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