Historical Effects of El Nino/Southern Oscillation events upon snowpack variation in the Rocky Mountains, USA

Cole, Caroline (2007) Historical Effects of El Nino/Southern Oscillation events upon snowpack variation in the Rocky Mountains, USA. BSc dissertation, University of Portsmouth.

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    Abstract

    This study looks at the effects of ENSO events upon snowpack in the Rocky Mountains over a time period from 1961-2005. The effects of El Nino and La Nina events at varying latitudes and altitudes are reviewed. A secondary data approach is taken, using several different indices to define El Nino/La Nina years and April 1st SWE data from SNOTEL records. It was discovered, after using several different statistical methods to analyse the data, that in the Northern (Southern) states during an El Nino event there is a decrease (increase) in SWE and during a La Nina event there is an increase (decrease) in SWE. The results from the test to look at altitude showed that in the Northern States there are negative correlations at all altitudes, however in the Southern States each altitude showed a different set of results. The low altitudes show negative correlations, the mid-altitudes show positive correlations and the high altitudes show no correlations at all. The overall conclusion from this study is that the statistical methods used were satisfactory in completing the objectives, however further research needs to be done into using the synoptic conditions affecting the snowpack to look their affects at each altitude.

    Item Type: Dissertation
    Departments/Research Groups: Faculty of Science > Department of Geography
    Depositing User: Jane Polwin
    Date Deposited: 20 Jan 2011 12:47
    Last Modified: 28 Jan 2015 11:13
    URI: http://eprints.port.ac.uk/id/eprint/377

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