National Seasonal Temperature Outlook: probabilities for Winter 2004, issued 18th May 2004

Warmer winter more likely in north and west

The Bureau's winter temperature outlook shows moderate to large swings in the odds towards above average maximum and minimum temperatures in the north and west of the country. This outlook pattern is the result of recent temperatures in both the Pacific and Indian Oceans.

For the June to August period, the chances of above average seasonal daytime temperatures are above 60% over WA, the NT, most of Queensland, and northwest SA (see map). The probabilities exceed 70% around parts of the Gulf of Carpentaria as well as over south and west WA where the peak values of over 80% occur. So with climate patterns like the current, about six to eight winters out of every ten are expected to be warmer than average across these parts of the country, with about two to four out of ten being cooler.

In NSW, the remainder of SA and most of Victoria, the chances of a warmer than average season are generally between 55 and 60%, while in Tasmania the odds are close to 50:50.

Outlook confidence is related to the consistency of the influence of Pacific and Indian Ocean temperatures on seasonal temperatures. During winter, history shows this influence on maximum temperatures to be moderately consistent over most of the country (see background information).

Warmer than average nights are also favoured over WA, the NT, Queensland, northern parts of SA and northern NSW, with probabilities ranging from 60 to near 80%. In the southeast of the country, the chances of above average winter minimum temperatures are mostly between 50 and 60%.

History shows the oceans' influence on minimum temperatures in winter to be moderately consistent over large parts of the country, except over Victoria, Tasmania and parts of southeast SA where the influence is only weakly or very weakly consistent.

probability of exceeding median maximum temperature - click on the image for a larger version of the map
probability of exceeding median minimum temperature - click on the image for a larger version of the map

Click on the maps above for larger versions of the maps. Use the reload/refresh button to ensure the latest forecast maps are displayed.

The following climate meteorologists in the National Climate Centre can be contacted about this outlook: Grant Beard on (03) 9669 4527, David Jones on (03) 9669 4085, Felicity Gamble on (03) 9669 4256
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



Corresponding rainfall outlook

Maximum temperature departures from average for February to April 2004 - base period 1961-1990

Minimum temperature departures from average for February to April 2004 - base period 1961-1990


Background Information