NT Seasonal Rainfall Outlook: probabilities for August to October 2003, issued 16th July 2003

NT rainfall odds neutral for late winter/mid-spring

The Bureau's latest seasonal rainfall outlook shows near 50:50 chances across most of the country with no big swing towards wetter or drier conditions for the late winter to mid-spring period.

For the August to October period in the Northern Territory, the chances of above median rainfall are between 45 and 60% (see Map). So with climate patterns like the current, about 5 seasons out of 10 are expected to be wetter than average across the Territory, with about 5 out of 10 being drier.

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

It should also be noted that August and September are in the heart of the dry season across the northern half of the NT and heavy rain at that time of year is uncommon.

The Bureau's August to October rainfall outlooks have moderate reliability over the northern and eastern NT (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 is showing a mixed pattern of warmer and cooler than average. For more detail see the El Niño Wrap-Up. The excess warmth in the Indian Ocean has had the greater influence on the overall pattern of probabilities.

June's value of the Southern Oscillation Index (SOI) was –12, five points below the May value of –7. The approximate SOI for the 30 days ending 13th July was –3.


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.

More information on this outlook is available from 9.00am to 5.00pm (CST) Monday to Friday by contacting the Climate and Consultancy section in the Bureau's Darwin Office: (08) 8920 3813.


June 2003 rainfall in historical perspective

April to June 2003 rainfall in historical perspective


Background Information