Thursday, 3 January 2008  - Annual Climate Summary for Canberra - Product code IDCKGC3xx0

Year 2007
Canberra's fourth consecutive hottest year on record

Summary

  • Warmest year on record for annual average mean temperatures
  • Warmest year on record for annual average minimum temperatures
  • Equal second warmest year on record for annual average maximum temperatures
  • Fourth consecutive year of record breaking annual mean temperatures
  • Eleventh consecutive year of above average annual maximum, minimum and mean temperatures
  • Stormiest year in 37 years
  • Below average rainfall

Rainfall

Canberra's total 2007 rainfall of 565.8 mm recorded at Canberra Airport, was below the historical annual average of 623.2 mm. There were 102 rain days during 2007, which was slightly below the historical average of 104 rain days. Much of the rain fell during the months of February, June, November and December, with in excess of 90 mm of rainfall recorded in each month.

Temperature

Record breaking temperatures were a standout feature for Canberra during 2007. The average mean temperature (the average of the maximum and minimum temperature) for 2007 was 14.8°C, which is 1.8°C above the historical average1 of 13.0°C. This makes 2007the warmest year on record for average annual mean temperatures, exceeding the previous record of 14.4°C in 2006. 2007 was also the fourth consecutive record breaking year for mean temperatures.

Canberra experienced very warm nights during 2007. The average minimum temperature of 8.3°C was 1.8°C above the historical average of 6.5°C. This is the warmest annual average minimum temperature on record for Canberra (previous record was 7.7°C in 1973, 1981 and 1983). The highest minimum temperature at Canberra Airport was 23.7°C on 21 January, which was 10.6°C above the average January minimum temperature of 13.1°C, and the warmest daily minimum temperature since 1983 (26°C on 9 March). The lowest minimum temperature was −4.7°C on 17 July.

Day-time (maximum) temperatures were above average during 2007. The average maximum temperature was 21.2°C, which is higher than the historical annual average of 19.6°C. This makes 2007 equal to 1982 as the second warmest year on record for average annual maximum temperatures (current record is 21.8°C set in 2006). The highest maximum temperature at Canberra Airport during 2007 was 40.5°C on 12 January, which was the 3rd highest temperature ever recorded in Canberra (current record is 42.2°C on the 1st February 1968).

Some sites had their highest mean daily minimum temperature on record.

Other phenomena

Thunderstorms: Canberra recorded 38thunderstorms during 2007 compared to the historical average of 26. This is the highest number of thunderstorms since 1970, when 48 storms were recorded. The most significant month for thunderstorms was February, with 14thunderstorms reported (historical average 4). This makes February 2007the stormiest month on record for Canberra.

Sunshine: The amount of sunshine for Canberra during 2007 averaged 8.1 hours per day which is slightly above the historical average of 7.7 hours per day. Monthly averages varied considerably from only 5.4 hours per day in June to 11.1 hours per day in January, which was the sunniest January in Canberra for 20 years (and equalled the record of 11.1 hours per day set in January 1987).

Frosts and Fogs: There were 80 frosts observed in 2007, below the annual average of 93; and 29 fogs which is below the annual average of 48.

Wind: It was rather windy during 2007, with an average wind run of 191.9 km/day at Canberra Airport. This is slightly greater than the historical average of 188.3km/day, and the highest wind run total since 2004. 31strong wind days were recorded at Canberra Airport during 2007 compared to the historical annual average of 27 days. 2 gales were recorded during the year, equalling the historical average of 2. The highest wind gust recorded at Canberra Airport in 2007 was from the NW at 95km/h on 3 October.

Further information

Shannon Symons
Climate Officer
NSW Climate Services Centre
Bureau of Meteorology
Phone (02) 9296 1555
Email reqnsw@bom.gov.au

Extremes

Hottest day
Highest temperature
40.5°C at Canberra Airport on 12 Jan
Warmest days on average
Highest mean daily maximum temperature
21.2°C at Canberra Airport
Coolest days on average
Lowest mean daily maximum temperature
21.1°C at Tuggeranong (Isabella Plains) AWS
Coldest day
Lowest daily maximum temperature
−4.4°C at Mount Ginini AWS on 18 Jul
Coldest night
Lowest temperature
−8.0°C at Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve on 11 Jul
Coolest nights on average
Lowest mean daily minimum temperature
7.8°C at Tuggeranong (Isabella Plains) AWS
Warmest nights on average
Highest mean daily minimum temperature
8.3°C at Canberra Airport
Warmest night
Highest daily minimum temperature
23.7°C at Canberra Airport on 21 Jan
Wettest overall
Highest total rainfall
938.2 mm at Canberra (Corin Dam (Boat Ramp))
763.8 mm at Bendora Dam
Wettest day
Highest daily rainfall
89.9 mm at Belconnen (Holt (Pine Ridge)) on 1 Jan

Driest overall
Lowest total rainfall

509.8 mm at Watson (Racecourse)
Highest wind gust
95 km/h at Canberra Airport on 3 Oct

Records

Record highest annual mean daily minimum temperature
Mean daily minimum
temperature
for 2007 (°C)
Previous annual
highest
Normal
annual
Years of
record
Canberra Airport 8.3 7.7 in 1983 6.4 68

Summaries

Summary statistics for 2007
Maximum temperatures
(°C)
Minimum temperatures
(°C)
Rainfall
(millimetres)
Mean
for
2007
Diff
from
normal
Highest
for
2007
Mean
for
2007
Diff
from
normal
Lowest
for
2007
Total
for
2007
Normal
annual
total
Rank
of
2007
Fraction
of annual
normal
Sthn Tablelands Gburn-Monaro (district 70)
Canberra Airport 21.2 +1.6 40.5 12 Jan 8.3 +1.9 −4.7 17 Jul 565.8 618.1 normal 92%
Mount Ginini AWS 27.0 17 Jan 3.8 −8.0 17 Jul 1017.2
Tuggeranong 21.1 +0.2 39.3 12 Jan 7.8 +1.0 −6.8 17 Jul 656.0 571.9 normal 115%

Notes

This statement has been prepared based on information available at 9 am on Thursday 3 January 2008. Some checks have been made on the data, but it is possible that results will change as new information becomes available.

A note about deciles: Deciles are used to give an element (in this case rainfall or temperature) a ranking. Deciles are calculated by arranging the totals in ascending order (from lowest to highest) then splitting them into 10 equal groups (thus the groups are called deciles). The first group would be in decile range one, the second group in decile range two, etc up to the highest annual totals (highest 10 per cent) being in decile range 10.

1Averages: Averages are based on the period 1961 to 1990 which is a convention of the World Meteorological Organisation

Normals are long-term averages based on observations from all available years of record, which vary widely from site to site. They are not shown for sites with less than 20 years of record for temperature and less than 30 years of record for rainfall, as they cannot then be calculated reliably.

Other Links

National Annual Climate Summary is available here

Further information

Shannon Symons
Climate Officer
NSW Climate Services Centre
Bureau of Meteorology
Phone (02) 9296 1555
Email reqnsw@bom.gov.au