National Seasonal Rainfall Outlook: probabilities for July to September 2003, issued 17th June 2003

Even odds for seasonal rainfall

The Bureau's latest seasonal rainfall outlook shows generally even odds for above average falls. The one exception is over part of north Queensland where above average falls are the more likely outcome.

For the July to September period, the chances of above median rainfall are between 60 and 65% over parts of northeast Queensland north of Rockhampton (see map). So with climate patterns like the current, about 6 seasons out of 10 are expected to be wetter than average in this part of the country, whilst about 4 out of 10 are drier.

probability of exceeding median rainfall - click on the map for a larger version of the map

It should also be noted that July to September is the heart of the dry season across northern Australia and heavy rain at that time of year is uncommon.

Throughout NSW, Victoria, Tasmania, SA, WA, the NT and remaining parts of Queensland, the odds are generally close to 50% with no substantial swings towards a wetter or drier season. The Bureau's July to September rainfall outlooks have moderate reliability over much of Queensland and northern NSW, but mainly low reliability elsewhere (see background information).

The Outlook probabilities are based on recent Indian and Pacific Ocean temperatures. The tropical Indian Ocean is warmer than average, whilst the Pacific has continued to cool following the end of the El Niño. For more detail see the El Niño Wrap-Up. The overall pattern of probabilities is almost entirely a result of warmer than average temperatures in the Indian Ocean.

May's value of the Southern Oscillation Index (SOI) was –7, two points below the April value of –5. The approximate SOI for the 30 days ending 14th June was –16.


Click on the map above for a larger version of the map. Use the reload/refresh button to ensure the latest forecast map is displayed.

The following climate meteorologists in the National Climate Centre can be contacted about this outlook: Grant Beard on (03) 9669 4527, Blair Trewin on (03) 9669 4603, Janita Pahalad on (03) 9669 4859, David Jones on (03) 9669 4085.
Regional versions of this media release are available: | Qld | NSW | Vic | Tas | SA | WA | NT |

Regional commentary is available from the Climate and Consultancy Sections in the Bureau's Regional Offices:
Queensland -(07) 3239 8669 or (07) 3239 8666
New South Wales -(02) 9296 1522
Victoria -(03) 9669 4949
Tasmania -(03) 6221 2043
South Australia -(08) 8366 2664
Western Australia -(08) 9263 2222
The Northern Territory -(08) 8920 3813



Archive of previous National Seasonal Rainfall Outlooks

Archive of previous National Seasonal Temperature Outlooks

May 2003 rainfall in historical perspective

March to May 2003 rainfall in historical perspective


Background Information