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The Solar Cycle Or El Niño Southern Oscillation (enso) As A Criterion For The Definition Of Public Policies

Congress: 2015
Author(s): Juan Rodrí­guez, Gerardo Zavala

Juan Manuel Rodríguez Torres* Gerardo Zavala Guzmán**
Email:,Departamento de Arquitectura DAAD, Phone (52)473-10-20-100 ext. 2237 fax 2234. **, Departamento de Estudios Organizacionales DCEA, phone (52)473-7352900 ext. 2868, Universidad de Guanajuato, Guanajuato, Gto. México C. P. 36000

Keyword(s): Sub-theme 7: Global challenges for water governance,
Article: Oral:

The Solar Cycle or El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) as a Criterion for the Definition of Public Policies.

Theme: seeks to explore Global Water, a Resource for Development: Opportunities, Challenges and Constraints Sub-theme 7: Global Challenges for water governance


We present a review of two phenomena studied as evidence of climate change on Earth: the first, as the determinant factor for general climate variations; the second -- a consequence of the first -- as the responsible for the significant variations of the Surface Temperature of the Sea (SST). The main objective of this work is to find correlations for the Solar Cycle (SC) and the El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) phenomenon; whether they have common aspects and from these results, define the criteria for public policies that might counteract the impact they could have on future physical, social, etc. issues.

We start with the analysis of the way in which the Oceanic Niño Index (ONI) is determined and which considers the range from -0.5 to 0.5 °C as the variation of the Surface Temperature of the Sea (SST).

This operational definition from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) for El Niño and La Niña is based on the seasonal temperatures of 0.5 °C, warm (El Niño) or -0.5 °C, cold (La Niña) over (below) the normal temperature in the Central Tropical Pacific. A "season" means here any average period of 3 months: December-January-February, January-February-March, and so on.

On the other hand, we consider new the Solar Cycle (SC) which spans a period of 11.2 year in average. The measurement is reported as Sunspots number and is measured daily, monthly and annually. These values are called International Sunspot Number; and are provided by the Sunspot Index and Long-term Solar Observations (SILSO) which depends on the Solar Influences Data Analysis Center (SIDC), which, in turn, is the Solar Physics Research Department of the Royal Observatory of Belgium.

The comparison between the Solar Cycle is made with similar data from the NOAA documentation for the Oceanic Niño Index (ONI). The monthly data for the analysis method is the same as the data used for NOAA and considered in the same manner comprising mean periods of 3 months, as it builds up on the period from 1950 to the early months of 2014, and the reference mean for the period 1981-2010.

El Niño (La Niña) is a phenomenon in the Equatorial Pacific Ocean characterized by a period of five consecutive years and the mean of a 3-month period for the Sea Surface Temperature (SST). An "anomaly" is the difference between the mean temperature of a thirty year period and the mean temperature of the 3-month cycle. These mean values were measured initially for the period 1971--2000 and recently, this cycle was readjusted to cover the cycle 1981--2010 for the region The Niño 3.4 and is above (below) the threshold of +0.5°C (-0.5°C). This standard of measure is known as the Oceanic Niño Index (ONI).

The regions for the El Niño are defined in the following geographic ranges for the El Niño-3 region in the eastern Pacific (Latitude: 5°S -- 5°N, and Longitude: 150°W -- 90°W), the El Niño-4 region in the west-central Pacific (Latitude: 5°S to 5°N, Longitude: 150°W to 160°E), the El Niño-3.4 region, which overlaps with both the El Niño-3 and the El Niño-4 (Latitude: 5°S --5°N, Longitude: 170°W--120°W).

The information mentioned above is provided by documentation of NOAA and covers a period from 1950 until early 2014, it also builds upon the last reference period 1981-2010, and it is taken as the basis for comparison, in the region for El Niño 3.4

The Solar Cycle (SC) may occur in a period of 7 to 17 years whereas the average period is comprised of 11.2 years, but at the same time, this period can form composed larger cycles known as Minima of Gleissberg, which occur ca. every 85 years.

The found data correlations allow us to state possible relationships, as well as possible scenarios resulting from their interactions.

This analysis allows us to define the relationship between phenomena, as well as to define criteria for the public policies for remediation in the long term.

One of these criteria resulting from the knowledge of the behavior of the phenomena, among others, deals with energy issues. The apparently perceived expectations will have to consider a variety of criteria in relation to the conservation of energy resources.

A variable that has not been considered in explaining current climate phenomena is the solar cycle, according to this comparison, these have been more consistent to understand these phenomena and their frequency can conclude that has been present in the changes have occurred on the planet. 1. Climate Prediction Center/ NCEP, (2014), ENSO: Recent Evolution Current Status and Prection. NOAA, USA
2. Michelle L. LÂ’Heureux et, al.,(2012), Linear Trends in Sea Surface Temperature of the Tropical Pacific Ocean and Implications for the El Niño-Southern Oscillation. Climate Dynamics 40, 1223-1236.
3. Fagan Brian, (2008), La Pequeña Edad de Hielo: Como el Clima afecto la Historia de Europa (1300-1850), Gedisa, Barcelona, 344p
4. Alley Richard B.,(2007), El Cambio Climático: Pasado y Futuro.,Siglo XXI, Salamanca (ESPAÑA), 251p.

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