A hot, dry summer is likely across Australia, but there is some rain on the way for NSW and Victorian farmers next month, the Bureau of Meteorology says.
The bureau’s latest climate outlook forecasts drier-than-average weather for most of Australia between December and February, particularly for Western Australia, Central Australia and Queensland and western Tasmania.
The summer period will bring on warmer-than-average days and nights nationwide – but two states will also experience a wetter than average December.
“In December, higher pressure over the southern Tasman sea is likely to drive more humid air than normal, resulting in a welcome wetter than average December outlook for Eastern and central NSW, as well as eastern Victoria,” the bureau’s senior hydrologist, Dr Robert Pipunic, said on Thursday, meaning many drought-affected areas will receive a much-needed downpour.
One of the big influencers on the weather patterns this summer is an El Nino – which pushes drier conditions across northern parts of the country.
Dr Pipunic said there is about a 70 per cent chance of El Nino occurring over the summer months, and an El Nino alert remains in place.
The other big influence over Australia’s summer weather is a positive Southern Annular Mode (SAM) – which will drive humid air inland over southeast Australia.
The positive SAM will be the primary driver behind the wetter-than-average forecast for parts of NSW and Victoria.
NSW, ACT and Victoria
Eastern and central NSW, as well as eastern Victoria and the ACT, will buck the trend and be wetter than average through December. Areas as far west as Cobar in NSW will see more rain than usual, as well as the entire ACT. All areas will be warmer than usual.
Scattered areas in the Sunshine State will be drier than normal between December and February. The temperatures will also be above average for much of the summer.
Western Australia and Northern Territory
The outlook predicts large parts of Western Australia and the Northern Territory will be drier than usual over the summer. Temperatures will be higher than average.
While the forecasts for the southern states are not as accurate as the northern parts of the country, BOM predicts SA residents will have warmer days and nights and an average amount of rain.
The western side of Tasmania will experience a drier-than-normal period through December, although some areas in the north east could receive slightly more rainfall than normal.