|Qld Seasonal Rainfall Outlook: probabilities for Spring 2004, issued 17th August 2004|
Neutral outlook for Spring rainfall in Queensland
Although below average falls are favoured in parts of southeastern Australia, there are a no strong shifts in the odds towards either below or above average spring rainfall in Queensland, the Bureau of Meteorology announced today.
However, due to the poor or very poor start to the winter cropping season (April-November), parts of southeast Queensland have a less than 20% chance of reaching the total growing seasonal average by the end of November. For more information on the recent dry conditions, see the Drought Statement.
Across Queensland, the chances of above median rainfall for spring are mostly between 45 and 55% (see map). So in years with ocean patterns like the current, about five spring periods out of ten are expected to be drier than average, with about five out of ten being wetter.
The current pattern of outlook probabilities is due to recent temperature patterns in both the Pacific and Indian Oceans.
Outlook confidence is related to the influence of Pacific and Indian Ocean temperatures on seasonal rainfall. During spring, history shows this influence to be moderately consistent across most of Queensland, within the exception of the southeast of the State where it is only weakly consistent (see background information).
The Southern Oscillation Index (SOI) has remained significantly negative for the second successive month, with a July value of 7 following the June reading of 14. The approximate SOI for the 30 days ending 14th August was 12. Consistent with the negative SOI, the central Pacific has been warming over the past few months. However, given historical precedent and the current model guidance, the triggering of an El Niño event during the second half of 2004 is less likely than the persistence of neutral conditions. For more detail see the El Niño Wrap-Up.
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 (EST) Monday to Friday by contacting the Climate and Consultancy section in the Bureau's Brisbane Office: (07) 3239 8669 or (07) 3239 8666.|
THE NEXT ISSUE OF THE SEASONAL OUTLOOK IS EXPECTED BY 16th SEPTEMBER 2004.