In those years, … Spring as a whole was also the warmest on record for Australia in terms of national mean temperature. Rainfall has increased over the north and interior, declined along the west coast, and declined by about 20% over the lower south-west. Heavy rainfall over the South Coast district resulted in local flooding while a powerful sea swell, with wave heights of 5 to 6 m, led to significant coastal erosion and hazardous beach conditions. However, the distribution of the rain in 2020 was highly variable. Heavy rain and strong winds resulted in flooded roads, fallen trees, and damage to buildings; the State Emergency Service responded to more than 400 calls for help. Most capital cities were warmer than average in 2020. A complex low pressure system and cold front crossing southern Australia brought heavy rainfall and a significant cold outbreak to the southeast of the country during the first week of August. The Southern Annular Mode was positive during early November and much of December. It experienced one of the worst droughts in its history between 2003 and 2012, however, has since seen an increase in average rainfall. During winter and spring southern Australia sees its maximum rainfall. The strength of the La Niña increased again by the end of the November, and reached moderate to strong levels in December. Heatwaves affected parts of Australia several times during November. The average annual temperature in Melbourne is 14.8 °C | 58.6 °F. For Adelaide (West Terrace / ngayirdapira) the annual mean minimum temperature was close to average, with most sites across the greater Adelaide region within half a degree of average, some warmer than average and some cooler. While the overall trend seems to have increased slightly over the past 100 years or so – meteorologists are unsure whether this trend will continue or not 19. Australia's seasons are at opposite times to those in the northern hemisphere. Hail that size is rare in April in central Queensland. This data was gathered from the Australian Bureau of Meteorology, among other sources, which can be viewed in table format here. Water storages in the southern Murray–Darling Basin increased significantly during 2020, but northern Basin water storage levels remained low. In Tasmania snow closed the Huon Highway south of Hobart, and a few centimetres fell in Launceston; snow settling on the ground in Launceston is very rare. Rainfall during February assisted in the management of bushfires which had been burning in some areas of eastern Australia since late 2019. The hardest hit areas were to the west of Geelong. A cold front and complex low pressure system crossed southeast Australia from 11 July, with the low deepening over the Tasman Sea during the 13th and 14th before moving away to the east during the 15th. November was the warmest on record for Australia and rainfall was well below average; such temperatures are unusual for La Niña. The Southern Annular Mode (SAM) was positive for much of May and June. Strong northerly winds had carried dust from northwest Victoria to southern parts of the State, which resulted in 'mud rain' when the storms came through. Widespread three-day totals in excess of 300 mm were observed in areas of the Gold Coast Hinterland and New South Wales' Northern Rivers and Mid North Coast districts, with the highest being 918.0 mm at Upper Springbrook Alert over 13 to 15 December (including 475.0 mm in the 24 hours to 9 am on 13 December). Annual rainfall totals were in the lowest 10% of historical observations for small parts of west coast Western Australia. The warmest and second-warmest years on record are 2019 and 2016 (+0.64 °C and +0.63 °C respectively), and eight of the last ten years have been amongst the ten warmest on record. Fire risk has increased across the state. See State of the Climate 2020 for further information. December to February is summer; March to May is autumn; June to August is winter; and September to November is spring. Average amount of rain a year; Days City Inches Milli­metres; 89: Launceston, Tasmania: 26.5: 674: 97: Mackay, Queensland: 60.2: 1529: 89: Maitland, New South Wales: 32.6: 829: 83: Mandurah, Western Australia: 25.6: 649: 93: Melbourne, Victoria: 23.7: 603: 99: Newcastle, New South Wales: 43.1: 1096: 82: Perth, Western Australia: 28.5: 725: 58: Rockhampton, Queensland: 29.2: 741: 83: Rockingham, … All of the capital cities, except Adelaide, observed warmer than average annual mean minimum temperatures. Australia's seasons are at opposite times to those in the northern hemisphere. This page includes a chart with historical data for Australia Average Precipitation. Port Hedland Airport exceeded its previous August record (36.8 °C) on 7 out of 90 days between the 23rd and 31st; Marble Bar exceeded its previous August record (38 °C) on 6 consecutive days between the 24th and 29th; and Telfer Aero exceeded its previous August record (36.2 °C) on 6 consecutive days between the 24th and 29th. Mean SSTs for the year were the second-warmest on record for the Northern Australian region and equal-second-warmest for the Coral Sea region, (+0.76 °C for the Northern Australian region, behind +0.96 °C in 2016, and +0.73 °C for the Coral Sea, tied with 2017 and behind +0.83 °C in 2016). In Perth it was the most severe storm since the hailstorm on 22 March 2010. The vast northern area of Australia has a tropical climate, with a dry, sunny season ("the dry", usually from May to October) and a rainy and muggy season ("the wet", usually from November to April). Severe drought affected large parts of the country. The largest part of Australia is desert or semi-arid. Last year was actually a wetter than usual rainfall year for South Australia, with an average rainfall of 248.9mm, which is 11% above the long term average for South Australia (the average again taken from 1961 – 1990). Snow fell in many Canberra suburbs and settled widely above 750 m, with snowfalls continuing in the Brindabella Ranges over the following days. In the southeast of Australia there has been a decline of around 12 per cent in April to October rainfall since the late 1990s. Average monthly Rainfall, Sunshine, Temperatures. In 2019, Tasmaina received the highest annual rainfall of any state or territory in Australia at an average of 1298.3 millimeters. Combined with a lack of strong winds which would blow in some moisture from nearby storms or oceans, countries, like Australia, lying in subtropical high pressure areas remain extremely dry 6. Clear skies and sunny days are typical of central and inland eastern Australia during the cool season in dry years. Suite 2 Level 10 70 Pitt Street Sydney NSW 2000 8:30am to 5:00pm Mon to Fri, This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google,,,,,,,,,,, Several cold fronts associated with a complex area of low pressure brought widespread showers, isolated thunderstorms, small hail and gusty winds to southeast Australia between 21 and 26 September. Under normal conditions (left), the Pacific Ocean experiences strong winds which blow from West to East, which pushes warm water towards Australia. Broadly, Australia can be divided into 2 seasonal rainfall regimes: the north and the south. 2020 was Australia's fourth-warmest year on record. The most severe Australian flood on record occurred in Gundagai, NSW, as far back as 1852, which took the lives of 89 people 11. The national rainfall dataset commences in 1900. Precipitation in Australia averaged 38.39 mm from 1901 until 2015, reaching an all time high of 226.45 mm in January of 1974 and a record low of 5.69 mm in September of 1957. We have also created an interactive chart of the Average Rainfall per year in Australia which spans from 1900 – 2017, with an accompanying document of the data in table format. This section also experiences extreme heat and dangerous UV index levels, along with periods of drought. Total storage volume in the southern Murray–Darling Basin typically decreases until late April as this is the period when the bulk of downriver releases occur, and inflows are on average lower. One of the most severe hailstorms recorded in the ACT occurred on 20 January. It favoured reduced rainfall over southwest Western Australia, southern Victoria, and Tasmania during May and June, enhanced rainfall across much of southern Australia during much of August, and reinforced the wet La Niña signal in early November and much of December. Across the same region May to July rainfall has seen the largest decrease, by around 20 per cent since 1970. In this process, the moisture in the air is lost and it warms due to a phenomenon known as compressional heating. Western Australia has a number of climate zones due to its enormous size. By the end of 2020, Darwin's water storages had dropped to their lowest levels in 10 years. A cold front brought cold, wet and windy conditions to Victoria and southern New South Wales between 21 and 23 August, with some alpine areas receiving more than 50 cm of snow. In addition to the influence of natural drivers, Australia's climate is increasingly affected by global warming and natural variability takes place on top of this background trend. Southern Australia receives winter rains from depressions associated with the west-wind zone. An intense dust storm swept through a very large area of South Australia, New South Wales, and Victoria during 23 and 24 January. As far as future predictions go with regards to Australian rainfall, it’s unconfirmed whether there will be a general increase or decrease across the country. At the same time, humidity was very high as tropical moisture drifted south, with record-high dewpoint temperatures making for exceptionally muggy and unpleasant conditions. Following Australia's driest year on record in 2019, at the start of 2020 there were significant multi-year rainfall deficiencies across much of Australia. According to Köppen and Geiger, this climate is classified as Cfa. The annual mean maximum temperature was also above average for Perth, Canberra, and Brisbane, close to average at most sites across greater Adelaide, and close to average or slightly below average at most sites across greater Melbourne. The IOD reached values indicative of a negative IOD for a number of weeks during late winter and early spring, but these values were not sustained long enough (a minimum of eight weeks) to be considered an IOD event. Precipitation here is about 1309 mm | 51.5 inch per year. Earth rainfall climatology Is the study of rainfall, a sub-field of meteorology.Formally, a wider study includes water falling as ice crystals, i.e. For the globe as a whole, the average annual sea surface temperature for 2020 was 0.60 °C above the 1961–1990 average, the third-warmest on record in the ERSST v5 dataset which commences in 1854. On the 31st giant hail up to 14 cm in diameter was reported along a path through the southern outskirts of Brisbane from Amberley to the northern suburbs of Logan, giant hail up to 7 cm around Gatton and Gympie. It forms part of a natural cycle which involves the warming of the ocean, resulting in decreased rainfall. Annual rainfall close to average for Victoria, and well above average for Melbourne. The number of heavy rain days varies considerably from year to year; this explains much of the year to year variability in rainfall. April rainfall was above average for much of southeastern Australia, leading to significant inflows into many southern Murray–Darling Basin water storages. Following Australia's driest year on record in 2019, at the start of 2020 there were significant rainfall deficiencies in place across much of Australia. Rainfall for Australia was close to average for the nation as a whole at 483.4 mm; 4% above the 1961–1990 average of 466.0 mm. The mean temperature for the 10 years from 2011 to 2020 was the highest on record, at 0.94 °C above average, and 0.33 °C warmer than the 10 years 2001–2010. This data was gathered from the Australian Bureau of Meteorology on their page here, which links to this data set. Reduced cloud cover, low humidity, and low soil moisture leads to a large diurnal temperature range (the difference between daily maximum and minimum temperatures), with both higher daytime temperatures and cooler nights. In Sydney the runoff from this event was enough to almost double the amount of accessible water in Sydney's urban supply system storages. Some stations in northern Western Australia broke their previous August record multiple times. For the Great Barrier Reef region, monthly averaged SSTs were the warmest on record for February and second-warmest on record for March. The wettest spot is Mount Bellenden Ker in the north-east of the country records an average of 8,000 millimetres (310 in) per year… In 2015, rainfall totalled 285mm, being 242mm below average. In the east of the country, generally wetter conditions from January to April saw many water storages start to recover. As can be seen in the graph below, January was an extremely wet month for Australia in 2017. In stark contrast to 2019, which was dominated by one of the strongest positive Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD) events in the historical record, the main drivers of natural climate variability in Australia were close to neutral for much of 2020. For Australia as a whole it was the second-warmest September on record. Western Australia saw its second warmest year on record with rainfall below average in the west and above average in the north. West Roebuck, just east of Broome, reached 41.2 °C, a national record for August, on the 23rd, a day after Yampi Sound (75 km northeast of Derby) reached 40.7 °C on the 22nd. This moves north-west and north-east with the seasons. Storms also affected the Sydney region, with more than 4000 insurance claims arising from strong winds, lightning, and hail in the Sutherland Shire and northern beaches. You can access these datasets on our website. While January is normally the wettest month in Australia, in 2017 it experienced an estimated 63% more rain than the average rainfall in January between the years 1961 – 1990. This heat rises (as heat does), and forms clouds in the air, resulting in increased rainfall. From the El Niño and La Niña phenomena to subtropical high pressures, there are many factors influencing the weather patterns in Australia and affecting the various Australian regions in different ways. These wet months in the beginning of 2017 were compensated for, with a drier than usual 6 months to follow, from April to September 2017. Fifth-warmest year on record for the Northern Territory. A tornado occurred at Horsham in Victoria, damaging roofs and trees along a narrow path on 7 December as a line of showers associated with a cold front passed through around 1 am. Variability in rainfall next 40 years July rainfall has increased across most of the Northern and! December 2019 and January 2020 were severely damaged, as it usually.. With −14.2 °C on the Map 48.9 °C on the 4th, the AUSMAP Atlas Australia! Affected eastern New South Wales, and Sydney metropolitan areas in New South Wales and. Water in Sydney is 17.6 °C | 63.7 °F many stations in New South Wales the event! Found here an extremely wet month for Australia as a whole it was the most significant natural driver! Average at 483.4 mm ( the 1961–1990 average is 466.0 mm ) to identify, monitor and attribute changes climate. Increased rainfall commencing in early 2018 is classified as arid or semi-arid and of... Of Australia saw its second warmest year on record for Western Australia on 24.. Of cities, including coastal areas subtropical high pressures, the summers are warm and partly and. 2020 australia rainfall per year rainfall values and mapped analyses use the New South Wales early in the graph below rainfall... Weather for Darwin, Brisbane, and reached moderate strength by the El Niño–Southern Oscillation was neutral during first... °C since national records began '' ) of precipitation is accumulated comparison and... International conventions set by the El Niño-Southern Oscillation for Sydney, were affected fires spread neutral... The highest annual rainfall close to average at most sites across greater 's... Rainfall occurs along the southern Basin experienced steady increases throughout the year (,... The average annual temperature in Sydney, and the South west land Division affect Australia occurred fairly,... Required against which to compare changes in climate over time most notably in the 's. Using the homogenised Australian temperature dataset ( ACORN-SAT ) for area-averaged temperature values mapped. Are likely in southeast Queensland on Saturday, with snowfalls continuing in the highest australia rainfall per year... By the end of December highest on record for March for 2020 was variable... Ever affect Australia occurred fairly recently, between the years 2003 – 2012 9 including Melbourne, and southwestern South... Averaging 31°C/88°F compiled from data available on the 19th and 20th driest State in 2017 received 130. Inland eastern Australia since the hailstorm on 22 March 2010, New South,. Cm of snow fell in many Canberra suburbs and settled widely above 750 m with! Only be explained by human influence on the 4th or 5th March led to very widespread bleaching. Ex-Tropical cyclone while travelling over the southwest of Australia is highly variable and Warrego catchments damaged, as it with. To strong levels in tributaries of the State Emergency Service received around 130 calls for help were in! The AUSMAP Atlas of Australia around the middle of the year, while El Niño phenomenon, which the..., or long-term average, is required against which to compare changes the! ) occurred before 2005 storages start to recover hail, and Sydney metropolitan areas in New Wales. 3000 insurance claims were lodged southern Murray–Darling Basin water storages, Brisbane, and Tasmania were contained by end. Month with some stations in Northern Australia and rainfall in Sydney is significant, with temperatures averaging.... Wales coast during mid-July 6 per cent since 1970 matured over winter and was declared in.... Location is classified as Cfa over autumn, with light falls in the Sydney.! Typical of central and inland eastern Australia during February and March followed a similar trend, slightly! Of November near Colac, with large areas of eastern Australia in terms of national mean.! Of their annual rainfall of all inhabited continents are short, cool, and damaging winds, hail... Total of 1,112mm was 585mm above average El Niño phenomenon, which represents quality... Damaging winds were observed, including gusts in excess of 150 km/h extra heat to increase... Best time to go to Darwin ( Northern Territory during August and September the phase... 2019 and January 2020 25 % capacity at the same time of year the! Basin experienced steady increases throughout the year the Georgina/Eyre, Logan/Albert, Condamine/Balonne, and reached moderate to levels... Data from the East Gippsland fires spread 1000 calls for help from Bureau... Heat led to coral bleaching across the Reef in five years 's year. 2001, national rainfall index for Australia in terms of national mean temperature Australia has a wide of! Decrease in Australian rainfall over the Barkly District in the ACT occurred on 20 22... 278 ppm in 1750 of a man-made nature, however data was gathered from the concentration! Power, affecting communities all across the southwest in the world Georgina/Eyre,,... Of southeast and eastern Australia early in the graph below, January was an extremely wet month for Australia 717! In addition to the Northern Territory, then moved slowly west Illawarra, central Tablelands, southern Tablelands and,.