|Tas Seasonal Rainfall Outlook: probabilities for February to April 2005, issued 18th January 2005|
Neutral outlook for Tasmanian seasonal rainfall
There is a moderate shift in the odds towards below average rainfall in north Queensland, but for Tasmania the chances of accumulating at least average rain for the late summer to mid-autumn quarter (Feb-Apr) are close to 50%, the Bureau of Meteorology announced today.
For the February to April period, the chances of above median rainfall are just slightly higher than 50% over Tasmania (see map). So in years with ocean patterns like the current, about five seasons out of ten are expected to be drier than average across the State, with about five out of ten being wetter.
Outlook confidence is related to the influence of Pacific and Indian Ocean temperatures on seasonal rainfall. During the February to April period, history shows this influence to be only weakly consistent over Tasmania (see background information).
Climate patterns across the Pacific continue to show some signs that are consistent with El Niño (eg warm central Pacific temperatures), and some that are not (eg wind and cloud patterns). The Southern Oscillation Index (SOI) was 8 in December following 9 in November. The approximate SOI for the 30 days ending 15th January was 3.
For routine updates on the latest data relating to El Niño, together with details on what the phenomenon is and how it has affected Australia in the past, 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 Hobart Office: (03) 6221 2043.|
THE NEXT ISSUE OF THE SEASONAL OUTLOOK IS EXPECTED BY 18th FEBRUARY 2005