Au­gust 2018: A re­mark­able month in­deed

Wangaratta Chronicle - - News -

LAST month turned out to be un­usual - not only a greater part of the na­tion had a colder than nor­mal Au­gust, but also many places ex­pe­ri­enced max­i­mum tem­per­a­tures which were lower than the pre­vi­ous month of July.

In Syd­ney the mean max­i­mum tem­per­a­ture for Au­gust was 0.7 lower than that for July and the last time this hap­pened was back in 1975.

In 2014, Au­gust was colder than July but there was very heavy rain quite un­like the very dry July and Au­gust this year which was the dri­est such pe­riod since 1927.

In ad­di­tion, the monthly rain­fall pat­tern has con­tin­ued to run par­al­lel to 1975 - but the ex­ces­sive rain­falls which oc­curred in North East Vic­to­ria from Au­gust to De­cem­ber in 1975 has not yet hap­pened this year so far.

In Western Aus­tralia, Broome has had its cold­est Au­gust since 1901; the mean tem­per­a­ture of 20.3 de­grees Cel­sius was the low­est for Au­gust since 19.8 in 1901 and this looks alarm­ing as that year was the start of the so-called Fed­er­a­tion Drought which ran from Septem­ber 1901 for 18 months.

Wan­garatta was lucky to get heavy rain in mid-Oc­to­ber in 1901.

Mar­ble Bar also had a cold Au­gust, the cold­est there since since 1968 and other colder Au­gusts were in 1901, 1933, and 1953.

Those four par­tic­u­lar years saw the heav­i­est rain in North East Vic­to­ria dur­ing Oc­to­ber, but very hot weather in mid Novem­ber, just be­fore Christ­mas and more of the same in late Jan­uary.

Wan­garatta last win­ter had be­low av­er­age rain­fall, and each month had be­low nor­mal min­i­mum tem­per­a­tures for the sec­ond suc­ces­sive win­ter and this back to back sit­u­a­tion pre­vi­ously oc­curred in 2006-2007 and one other oc­curred in 1901-1902.

The first 40 de­gree tem­per­a­ture for the com­ing sea­son was recorded at Fitzroy Cross­ing in Western Aus­tralia, one of the ear­li­est on record.

Early oc­cur­rences of 40 de­grees were in 1981 and 2000.

This does in­di­cate that to some ex­tent that there will be max­i­mum tem­per­a­tures in North East Vic­to­ria to be well over 40 de­grees next Jan­uary and early Fe­bru­ary. On a brighter note an early au­tumn break is ex­pected pos­si­bly late in Fe­bru­ary.

By Peter Nel­son,

for­mer CSIRO cli­ma­tol­o­gist

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.