The pattern of seasonal temperature odds across northern Australia is a result
of recent warm conditions in the Indian Ocean and a warming Pacific.
The chance that the average August-October maximum temperature will exceed the
long-term median maximum temperature, is above 60% in all but the far north of the
region. In the southern half, the chance is mostly above 70%, with values above
80% in southern Queensland.
This means that for every ten years with ocean patterns like the current, about six
to nine would be expected to be warmer than average during the August to October
period over most of the NT and Queensland, with about one to four years being cooler.
Outlook confidence is related to how consistently the Pacific and Indian
Oceans affect Australian temperatures. During August to October, history
shows this effect on maximum temperatures to be moderately consistent across
most of northern Australia, with the exception of the far north where
it is only weakly consistent (see background information).
The outlook for mean minimum temperatures over August-October is broadly similar,
with moderate to strong shifts in the odds favouring warmer than normal
conditions in northern Australia. Cape York Peninsula is the exception.
The chance of a seasonal average above the long-term median minimum temperature,
is between 60 and 80% over much of the NT, and southern and western Queensland.
In contrast, 35 to 40% chances across Cape York Peninsula in Queensland
indicate a below average seasonal minimum is favoured.
History shows the oceans' effect on minimum temperatures in August to October to be
moderately consistent over most of Queensland, and the eastern parts of the
NT. In western parts of the NT the effect is generally only weakly consistent,
so this outlook should be used with caution in that area.