Poster Title

Examining Spatiotemporal Variations in Snow Water Equivalent in Response to the El Nino Southern Oscillation and the Pacific Decal Oscillation in the Pacific Northwest

Research Mentor(s)

Aquila Flower

Affiliated Department

Environmental Studies

Sort Order

30

Start Date

18-5-2017 12:00 PM

End Date

18-5-2017 3:00 PM

Document Type

Event

Abstract

The El Nino Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) play significant roles in dictating weather patterns on a seasonal, annual, and decadal scale in the Pacific Northwest. As such, ENSO and PDO have significant influence on snowpack development in the Cascade Range of Washington. While the standalone effects of ENSO and PDO on Pacific Northwest weather patterns are relatively well established, the combined effects and interplay of the two are less well understood. To better understand the effects of ENSO and PDO on snowpack development in the Washington Cascades, I used analysis of variance testing and regression analysis to analyze the significance and spatial variation of SWE values across multiple stations in the Washington Cascades over multiple decades. The analysis reveals interesting spatial and temporal patterns in SWE values in response to ENSO and PDO phases over the past six decades. Statistically significant differences between SWE values for multiple phase combinations were discovered upon completion of analysis. Results also indicated that while snowpack development is strongly influenced by ENSO and PDO phase, there are more variables at play in determining spatiotemporal variations in snowpack development and SWE. As winter snowpack development is crucial for drought mitigation and water resource management practices, a better understanding of snowpack development dynamics in response to large scale climatic oscillations and local climatic conditions may provide for more accurate predictions of snowpack size and extent in the future.

Rights

Copying of this document in whole or in part is allowable only for scholarly purposes. It is understood, however, that any copying or publication of this documentation for commercial purposes, or for financial gain, shall not be allowed without the author's written permission.

Language

English

Format

application/pdf

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May 18th, 12:00 PM May 18th, 3:00 PM

Examining Spatiotemporal Variations in Snow Water Equivalent in Response to the El Nino Southern Oscillation and the Pacific Decal Oscillation in the Pacific Northwest

Environmental Studies

The El Nino Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) play significant roles in dictating weather patterns on a seasonal, annual, and decadal scale in the Pacific Northwest. As such, ENSO and PDO have significant influence on snowpack development in the Cascade Range of Washington. While the standalone effects of ENSO and PDO on Pacific Northwest weather patterns are relatively well established, the combined effects and interplay of the two are less well understood. To better understand the effects of ENSO and PDO on snowpack development in the Washington Cascades, I used analysis of variance testing and regression analysis to analyze the significance and spatial variation of SWE values across multiple stations in the Washington Cascades over multiple decades. The analysis reveals interesting spatial and temporal patterns in SWE values in response to ENSO and PDO phases over the past six decades. Statistically significant differences between SWE values for multiple phase combinations were discovered upon completion of analysis. Results also indicated that while snowpack development is strongly influenced by ENSO and PDO phase, there are more variables at play in determining spatiotemporal variations in snowpack development and SWE. As winter snowpack development is crucial for drought mitigation and water resource management practices, a better understanding of snowpack development dynamics in response to large scale climatic oscillations and local climatic conditions may provide for more accurate predictions of snowpack size and extent in the future.