The Weekly Advertiser Horsham

Annual temperatur­es above average


While 2023 was Australia’s eighth hottest year on record, the Wimmera experience­d an average year for maximum and minimum temperatur­es.

Both mean annual maximum and minimum temperatur­es were above average for all states and the national rainfall was 1.7 percent above the 1961-1990 average.

Across the Wimmera, maximum temperatur­es in July, August and September were above average.

Some areas also experience­d aboveavera­ge maximum temperatur­es in October and November.

April, June, July, August and December

marked months of aboveavera­ge minimum temperatur­es.

Ararat recorded annual minimum and maximum mean temperatur­es above average.

Stawell and Edenhope also recorded annual minimum mean temperatur­es above average.

The mean national temperatur­e for June, July, August, September, November and December were among the 10 warmest on record for their respective month.

The European Union confirmed 2023 was the earth’s warmest year on record by a large margin.

It was 1.48 degrees warmer than the pre-industrial period, 0.16 degrees warmer than the previous record year, 2016, and 0.6 degrees warmer than the 1991-2020 average.

Australia was the only continent that did not see large areas register record temperatur­es, however, the August to October period was Australia’s driest three-month period on record since 1900.

Climate Council research director Dr Simon Bradshaw said it was concerning 2023 broke the record by such a large margin, with 2024 expected to be warmer still.

“Overall, the summary reveals just how much hotter and more dangerous today’s climate is than the relatively cooler and more stable climate in which human societies developed,” he said.

“We’re seeing how much more extreme our climate becomes as we approach 1.5 degrees of warming, and why we must work to limit future warming as much as possible through getting our emissions down fast by rapidly phasing out fossil fuels.”

The main climate drivers active during the year were La Niña, which weakened and dissipated through summer 2022-23, and El Niño and a positive Indian Ocean Dipole, which were establishe­d in early spring.

With an El Niño continuing into 2024, high-impact rainfall events could continue until April as severe storm frequency peaks. Throughout early January, the Wimmera was impacted by heavy rain and humidity.

Since the beginning of the year, towns across the Wimmera recorded between 30 and 80 millimetre­s of rain, above-average tallies for the month.

Natimuk recorded 81.4mm, Ararat 67.1mm – 27mm above the month’s average, Stawell 68.2mm – 31mm above average, and Warracknab­eal 50.8mm – 31mm above average.

Horsham recorded 34.6mm, Nhill 30.6mm, Edenhope 33.4mm and Hopetoun 39.8mm.

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