Oceanography The Official Magazine of
The Oceanography Society
Volume 06 Issue 02

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Volume 06, No. 2
Pages 36 - 44

TOGA-TAO and the 1991–93 El Niño Southern Oscillation Event

Michael J. McPhaden
First Paragraph

The El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) phenomenon is an interannual perturbation of the climate system characterized by aperiodic weakening of the tradewinds and warming of the surface layers in the equatorial Pacific Ocean every 4–7 years. The impacts of ENSO are felt worldwide through disruption of the atmospheric general circulation and associated global weather patterns (Rasmusson and Wallace, 1983; Ropelewski and Halpert, 1987). ENSO also affects the ecosystem dynamics in the Pacific Ocean, particularly the higher trophic levels of the food chain on which fisheries depend (Barber and Chavez, 1983).


McPhaden, M.J. 1993. TOGA-TAO and the 1991–93 El Niño Southern Oscillation Event. Oceanography 6(2):36–44, https://doi.org/10.5670/oceanog.1993.12.