In this reply, the authors clarify the points made in the original paper in 2015 and show that issues raised in the comment by Li et al. are unsubstantiated. The main conclusions can be summarized as follows: 1) The time evolution of the anomalous low-level northwest Pacific anticyclone (NWP-AC) is largely caused by combination mode (C-mode) dynamics. 2) The theoretical C-mode index accurately captures the rapid development of the anomalous NWP-AC. 3) Thermodynamic air-sea coupling does not play a major role for the rapid phase transition of the NWP-AC and the meridionally antisymmetric atmospheric circulation response during the peak phase of El Niño events in boreal winter.
- Atm/ocean structure/phenomena
- Geographic location/entity
- Nonlinear dynamics
- Pacific Ocean
- Seasonal cycle