CLIMATIC CONTROL ON THE DELIVERY OF FLUVIAL FRESHWATER AND SEDIMENT FROM COASTAL RIVERS OF THE WESTERN UNITED STATES: THE ROLE OF ENSO AND PDO
The role of the El Niño Southern Oscillation on storm precipitation, and therefore river discharge, in southern California has been well documented. This study supports the idea that there is positive correlation between warm El Niño years and higher discharges in the southern rivers, and a negative correlation in the higher latitudes. We also report on the role of the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) on these coastal rivers. There is strong positive correlation between the warm phase of the PDO and increased discharge in the southern rivers, and a negative correlation with the northern rivers. The interaction between these large-scale atmospheric-oceanic cycles and the local climate (arid to wet) determines the fluvial discharge of freshwater and sediment to the coastal ocean.