Warmer than average days ahead in BOM’s 3-month forecast

Today’s long-range BOM report forecasts warmer-than-average days with a mix of above-average and below-average rainfall across Australia.

It’s looking like this year isn’t the year to invest in those Arctic-rated thermals. You’ll still need to pull on your long socks and jumpers, but that big, full-bodied puffer jacket might not be getting as much love this year.

According to the latest long-range forecast by the Bureau of Meteorology, Australia will experience warmer-than-average days and nights from July to September. The forecast also indicates a mix of above-average and below-average rainfall across different parts of the country during the same period.

Specifically, interior and eastern seaboard areas are likely to receive above-average rainfall, while much of Victoria and Tasmania, south-east South Australia, and parts of south-west Western Australia are expected to face below-average rainfall. The rainfall patterns for the rest of Australia are predicted to be typical for the season.

This climatic prediction follows the trend observed in May, where rainfall was around average for many areas, albeit with drier conditions in parts of the southern and northern regions. Notably, May also brought higher-than-average temperatures, especially in western Australia, which was the warmest on record for the far southwest.

The Bureau notes that June has brought average to above-average soil moisture across most of the country. However, below-average soil moisture in parts of the western south, including Tasmania, contrasts this.

As Australia enters the cooler months, the bureau highlights an increased probability of warmer than usual days throughout July to September, coupled with warmer nights nationwide.

An important factor in these climatic conditions is the state of the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) in the Pacific Ocean.

Currently neutral, ENSO is neither in an El Niño nor La Niña phase. However, the Bureau suggests that ocean temperatures in the eastern tropical Pacific are expected to cool in the coming months yet remain warmer than average near Australia.

ENSO plays a significant role in influencing Australia’s climate.

El Niño phases are often associated with drier conditions across large parts of Australia. In contrast, La Niña typically brings enhanced rainfall to much of the continent.

These phases can also affect various other climatic factors, including frost, flood risk, the number of rain days, the likelihood of heat waves, evaporation rates, and the timing and intensity of the northern monsoon.

As the Pacific Ocean cycles through these different phases over three to seven years, changes in Australian weather patterns can significantly impact agricultural planning and decision-making.

The public can visit the Bureau of Meteorology’s website for more detailed information on Australian climate influences and the current forecast.

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