UPDATED Thursday 17 January 2008 - Annual Climate Summary for Tasmania - Product code IDCKGC37R0

Tasmania in 2007: Very warm and rather dry

2007 was one of the warmest on record in Tasmania, with both daytime and overnight temperatures almost a degree above normal across the state and several sites setting records. It was also a generally dry year, although some significant rainfall events meant it was not as dry as 2006. The year fits with a pattern of relatively warm and dry years that Tasmania, and much of southeast Australia, has seen in recent decades.

A summary for all of Australia has also been prepared, as has one for each of the states. Monthly summaries are also routinely prepared.

This is an updated version of the summary originally issued on 3 January 2008. There have been some minor changes to rainfall figures.

Details

Dry, but not as dry as 2006: It was another drier-than-average year across Tasmania, but it was not quite as dry as the record-breaking 2006. Most months were drier than average in most places, but there were several marked rainfall events during 2007, including local thunderstorms, a wet May in the north, flooding rain in August, an exceptionally wet October in the west, and a wet December in the northwest. Overall, rainfall totals were below average for most of the state, and very much below average in parts of the East Coast and southern Midlands that missed out on the heavier rain events during the year.

Still no sustained wet: Although there were some significant rainfall events in 2007, there has not been an extended period of above-average rainfall in Tasmania since the end of 2005. The 24 months from January 2006 on reveal low rainfall records in many parts of the state. This is also part of a longer-term dry period affecting much of southeastern Australia, reaching back to at least late 1996.

Very warm days: Maximum (daytime) temperatures were above normal most of the time, and there were numerous individual monthly records set. A cold June countered some of this, but several sites (including some with a long period of records) had their highest mean daily maximum temperature. The first part of the year was particularly warm, with record runs of hot days in February. Perhaps fittingly, the last day of the year was hot: Ouse reached 38 °C and Tarraleah had its hottest day on record on the 31st. Averaged across the whole state, 2007 was 0.85 °C above normal, the third-warmest since records began in 1910.

Mostly warm nights: Despite some very cold events (in particular during June), minimum (overnight) temperatures were above average most of the time during 2007. A few sites (including Launceston) had their highest mean daily minimum temperature, and averaged across the state 2007 was the second-warmest on record, at 0.70 °C above normal.  There was marked variability in minimum temperatures: Wynyard had its warmest night on record on 22 February and Eddystone Point had its coldest night on record on 22 June.

Very warm overall: The mean temperature (the average of the daily minimum and maximum temperatures) across Tasmania for the whole year was 0.77 °C warmer than normal, making 2007 Tasmania's second-warmest year (to 1988) since these records began in 1910. 2005 was also very warm, but 2006 was a bit cooler than normal, highlighting that although there is much variability from year to year most of the warmest years have been in recent decades. This Tasmania-wide average temperature  has risen by almost one degree over the last century.

A year of weather

These links are to the routine monthly and seasonal summaries prepared at the time, based on provisional data. Each will open in a new browser window.
January was especially wet, with a combination of vigorous cold fronts, low pressure systems centred over the state and a few thunderstorms, including rainfall so intense in Hobart that it occurs about one every 50 years on average. Temperatures were above average.
February was very warm, with long periods of very warm temperatures: Launceston had an unprecedented nine straight days reaching 28 °C, and Hobart had three days in a row reaching 31 °C. It was record dry in the west, but several bursts of thunderstorms made it very wet in the northeast.
Summer (including December 2006) was warm overall, and despite the wet January was relatively dry in most areas, and particularly on the North-West Coast.
March had mostly cool days, but some especially hot ones, in particular on the 23rd. Westerlies brought plenty of rain to the western half, but the east was relatively dry.
April was very dry across the state, and some sites in the west, north coast and Midlands had their driest April on record. There were many warm days, with temperatures approaching 30 °C on the 9th and 10th.
May was the warmest on record in Tasmania, with Hobart's record of the last 125 years just one of those broken. Almost all the nights were warmer than average, and the temperature did not once drop below 5 °C in Hobart. It was very wet in the north and west, with Launceston among the sites having their wettest May on record.
Autumn was very warm overall, with several sites having their warmest autumn on record. Rainfall was average (or slightly above) across the state, apart from the southeast which missed out on most of the rain.
June was an exceptionally cold and dry month, and many sites had their coldest or driest June on record. Frosts were common across the state: an example was Grove with 25 nights, including 23 in a row, where the temperature dropped to 2 °C. Liawenee, a cold place at the best of times, had four nights below -8 °C. Many places in the northern and central parts of the state had record low rainfall for June.
July started cold with almost three weeks of below-average daytime temperatures, but a week of mild weather at the end helped restore some balance. Rain in the western two-thirds was below average again.
August was notable for the gale force winds and flooding rain that battered much of Tasmania around the 10th, but there was almost no rain in the last ten days of the month, and the central East Coast missed out on the heaviest falls during the flood event. Temperatures were again above normal.
Winter was relatively dry, despite the flooding rain of August. The cold of June and early July ensured temperatures were mostly below the winter averages.
September had rain close to average, mostly the result of a burst of westerly winds near the end of the month, but in the east it was yet another in the series of drier-than-usual months. Days were mostly warmer than normal, but there some quite cold nights.
October was dominated by westerly winds and cold fronts, above-average rain to the west but below-average to the east. There were also some very warm days but some very cold nights, along with strong wind gusts: typical spring weather for Tasmania.
November was among the driest and warmest Novembers on record for many parts of Tasmania, with a distinct shortage of rain-bearing systems and several very warm days.
Spring was another relatively dry season, despite the rains in the west in October. Warm days predominated, with several places having their warmest spring on record (or nearly so).
December was another warm month, with several outbreaks of thunderstorms. The highest temperature of the year was on the very last day. It was quite wet in some areas, but again relatively dry on the East Coast.

Further information

Ian Barnes-Keoghan
Tasmania and Antarctica Climate Services Centre
Bureau of Meteorology
Phone (03) 6221 2043
Email climate.tas@bom.gov.au

Extremes

Hottest day
Highest temperature
38.0 °C at Ouse Fire Station on 31 Dec
Warmest days on average
Highest mean daily maximum temperature
19.2 °C at Launceston (Ti Tree Bend)
Coolest days on average
Lowest mean daily maximum temperature
8.8 °C at Mount Wellington
Coldest day
Lowest daily maximum temperature
-2.2 °C at Mount Wellington on 18 Jun
Coldest night
Lowest temperature
-8.8 °C at Liawenee on 18 Jun
Coolest nights on average
Lowest mean daily minimum temperature
2.0 °C at Liawenee
Warmest nights on average
Highest mean daily minimum temperature
12.2 °C at Hogan Island
Warmest night
Highest daily minimum temperature
21.4 °C at Flinders Island Airport on 18 Feb
Wettest overall
Highest total rainfall
at least 3450 mm at Mount Read
(some days missing, but still wettest)
Driest overall
Lowest total rainfall
261.2 mm at Tunbridge (Austin-Vale)
Wettest day
Highest daily rainfall
110.8 mm at Strathgordon Village on 10 Aug
Highest wind gust
157 km/h at Maatsuyker Island Lighthouse on 30 May

Records

Record highest temperature
Highest temperature
in 2007 (°C)
Previous
highest
Years of
record
Normal
annual
Tarraleah Village 35.1 on 31 Dec 35.0 on 24 Jan 1982 26 13.8



Record highest annual mean daily maximum temperature
Mean daily maximum
temperature
for 2007 (°C)
Previous annual
highest
Years of
record
Normal
annual
Cape Bruny Lighthouse 15.9 = 15.9 in 1988 84 14.8
Bushy Park (Bushy Park Estates) 19.1 19.0 in 2000 70 17.6
Launceston Airport Comparison 18.1 18.0 in 1988 68 16.9
Hobart Airport 18.4 18.3 in 2005 49 17.4
Eddystone Point 18.5 18.1 in 2001 48 17.0
Grove (Comparison) 18.0 = 18.0 in 2000 48 17.1
Strathgordon Village 15.1 14.8 in 1973 24 14.0
Launceston (Ti Tree Bend) 19.2 18.8 in 2000 23 18.4
Tarraleah Village 15.0 14.7 in 2000 22 13.8

Highest annual mean daily maximum temperature for at least 20 years
Mean daily maximum
temperature
for 2007 (°C)
Most recent higher
annual
Years since
higher
Normal
annual
Orford (Aubin Court) 17.9 18.6 in 1982 25 17.6



Record highest daily minimum temperature
Highest daily minimum
temperature
in 2007 (°C)
Previous annual
highest
Years of
record
Normal
annual
Wynyard Airport 20.2 on 22 Feb 20.0 on 24 Feb 1967 23 6.9



Record lowest temperature
Lowest temperature
in 2007 (°C)
Previous annual
lowest
Years of
record
Normal
annual
Eddystone Point -0.4 on 22 Jun 0.0 on 10 Jul 1997 50 10.4



Record highest annual mean daily minimum temperature
Mean daily minimum
temperature
for 2007 (°C)
Previous annual
highest
Years of
record
Normal
annual
Maatsuyker Island Lighthouse 9.5 9.4 in 1999 70 8.5
Swansea Post Office 8.8 = 8.8 in 1988 50 7.7
Launceston (Ti Tree Bend) 8.1 7.8 in 1981 23 7.1



Summaries

In this table, key sites have been highlighted to make them easier to find. This table is very wide and may not fit if printed.


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
Northern (district 91)
Bridport 17.8 +0.4 27.9 22 Feb 9.5 +0.5 -0.5 22 Jun 647.2 703.5 normal 92%
Burnie 17.6 +0.7 27.9 14 Jan 10.6 +1.4 2.2 18 Jun 761.4 958.0 low 79%
Cape Grim BAPS 16.2 +0.6 28.0 17 Feb 10.9 +0.3 3.0 14 Aug 911.6 736.8 high 124%
Cressy Research Station 18.9   34.8 17 Feb 6.2   -5.2 20 Jun 459.6
Devonport Airport 17.5 +0.7 27.9 14 Jan 8.9 +0.8 -1.8 20 Jun 592.4 772.8 low 77%
Launceston 19.2 +0.8 33.7 16 Jan 8.1 +1.0 -4.1 22 Jun 588.6 670.1 low 88%
Launceston Airport 18.8   34.8 17 Jan 6.8   -4.0 20 Jun 471.8
Launceston Airport Comparison 18.1 +1.1 33.6 17 Jan 7.0 +0.8 -4.1 22 Jun 541.2 678.0 low 80%
Low Head 17.0 +0.4 25.9 22 Feb 10.8 +0.5 1.0 22 Jun 550.8 645.4 low 85%
Marrawah 16.8 +0.7 30.9 17 Feb 9.9 +0.6 1.5 4 Sep 878.4 1063.3 very low 83%
Powranna 18.6 +1.0 34.1 17 Feb 6.7 +0.7 -4.0 18 Jun 474.6 592.8 low 80%
Scottsdale 17.7 +0.4 31.3 17 Jan 7.7 +0.6 -2.5 22 Sep 842.0 993.9 low 85%
Sheffield School Farm 16.8 +0.7 31.6 17 Feb 7.0 +0.2 -3.6 18 Jun
Smithton Aerodrome 17.7 +0.6 28.8 1 Mar 8.1 +0.5 -2.8 18 Jun 833.2
Wynyard Airport 17.6 +0.9 30.2 17 Jan 7.5 +0.7 -3.5 18 Jun 989.1 975.8 normal 101%
East Coast (district 92)
Eddystone Point 18.5 +1.5 33.0 5 Jan 11.2 +0.8 -0.4 22 Jun 587.4 765.1 low 77%
Fingal 18.1 +0.4 35.6 31 Dec 6.1 +0.9 -4.5 23 Jun 468.8 606.4 low 77%
Friendly Beaches 18.8 +0.5 35.0 5 Jan 9.9 +0.6 0.9 24 Jun
Lake Leake 14.5 +0.7 31.2 17 Feb 4.5 +0.6 -6.9 18 Jun 543.8 830.8 very low 65%
Maria Island 17.6   28.3 18 Feb 10.8   4.0 20 Jun
Orford 17.9 +0.3 33.0 11 Jan 8.3 +0.6 -1.3 5 Sep 405.4 668.6 very low 61%
Scamander 18.6 +0.6 33.0 20 Nov     -0.3 4 Aug 576.2 661.0 low 87%
St Helens Aerodrome 18.3   31.8 11 Jan 9.6   -1.0 22 Jun 595.0
Swan Island 17.3   27.0 23 Mar 11.9   3.8 20 Jun 711.2
Swansea Post Office 18.7 +0.8 35.0 11 Jan 8.8 +1.0 -1.5 18 Jun 353.1 593.4 very low 60%
Midlands (district 93)
Ross 18.7 +1.3 35.8 17 Feb 6.3 +0.8 -6.0 18 Jun 343.0 481.3 very low 71%
Southeast (district 94)
Campania 19.0   36.2 18 Feb 7.8   -2.8 18 Jun 421.8
Cape Bruny 16.5 +0.7 36.1 18 Feb 9.6 +0.4 2.4 14 Aug 865.4
Cape Bruny Lighthouse 15.9 +1.1 35.0 18 Feb 9.7 +1.0 1.8 4 Aug 1049.0 946.9 high 111%
Dover 16.9 +0.5 36.8 18 Feb 7.0 +0.2 -1.8 18 Jun 761.4 877.0 low 87%
Geeveston 17.5 +0.7 36.6 18 Feb 6.6 +0.5 -3.9 14 Aug 920.2 874.5 normal 105%
Grove 18.0 +0.9 36.2 31 Dec 6.3 +0.5 -4.8 18 Jun 593.8 741.9 low 80%
Grove 17.9   35.5 31 Dec 5.7   -5.0 18 Jun 610.4
Hobart 17.8 +0.9 35.2 18 Feb 9.2 +0.9 -0.4 18 Jun 549.8 616.6 normal 89%
Hobart Airport 18.4 +1.0 36.1 31 Dec 8.8 +0.8 -0.7 18 Jun 425.6 496.9 low 86%
Maatsuyker Island Lighthouse 14.5 +0.6 31.8 16 Feb 9.5 +1.0 3.1 21 Jun 992.2 1231.5 low 81%
Melton Mowbray 17.8 +0.5 37.2 31 Dec 6.5 +0.6 -6.4 18 Jun 472.6 438.0 normal 108%
Mount Wellington 8.8 +1.2 26.3 31 Dec 2.1 +0.9 -5.6 18 Jun
Tasman Island 14.7   28.0 17 Feb 9.2   1.2 18 Jun 813.0
Tunnack Fire Station 15.8 +0.6 33.2 17 Feb 5.5 +0.4 -6.3 18 Jun 504.6 605.3 low 83%
Derwent Valley (district 95)
Bushy Park 19.1 +1.5 36.2 18 Feb 5.9 0.0 -6.0 18 Jun 477.0 575.9 low 83%
Maydena Post Office 16.8 +0.7 35.0 31 Dec 5.6 +0.4 -3.5 18 Jun 1020.7 1198.0 very low 85%
Moogara 15.0 +1.1 32.5 18 Feb     -1.5 24 Jun 668.7 834.6 very low 80%
Ouse Fire Station 19.0   38.0 31 Dec 5.6   -6.1 18 Jun
Tarraleah Village 15.0 +1.1 35.1 31 Dec     -4.9 18 Jun 1005.8 1163.1 low 86%
Central Plateau (district 96)
Lake St Clair National Park 13.9 +0.9 32.6 31 Dec 3.1 +0.4 -5.5 18 Jun 1819.3 1873.8 normal 97%
Liawenee 12.7   31.2 31 Dec 2.0   -8.8 18 Jun 1014.0
West Coast (district 97)
Hartz Mountain 12.2   34.0 31 Dec 4.3   -3.0 21 Jun 1017.8
Mount Read 9.5 +0.8 27.2 16 Jan 3.1 +0.5 -5.2 21 Jun
Scotts Peak Dam 15.7   36.3 31 Dec 6.6   -1.5 10 Jul 1743.8
Strahan Aerodrome 17.1 +0.8 36.7 31 Dec 8.2 +0.4 -1.8 15 Jul 1540.0
Strathgordon Village 15.1 +1.1 35.0 31 Dec     -1.5 19 Jun 2524.0 2524.8 normal 100%
Warra 14.2   34.1 31 Dec 5.8   -2.5 22 Aug 1664.6
King Island (district 98)
King Island Airport 17.6 +0.9 34.4 18 Feb 10.4 +0.6 0.5 21 Jul 879.2 856.2 normal 103%
Flinders Island (district 99)
Flinders Island Airport 18.6 +0.9 33.4 23 Mar 10.6 +0.8 -1.2 23 Sep 622.6 748.6 low 83%
Hogan Island 17.4   32.9 5 Jan 12.2   5.6 13 Aug 665.8
Macquarie Island (district 300)
Macquarie Island 6.6 0.0 12.2 31 Jan 3.1 +0.1 -6.4 5 Jul 963.0 962.4 normal 100%


Notes

This statement has been prepared based on information available at 2 pm on Thursday 14 January 2008. Some checks have been made on the data, but it is possible that results will change as new information becomes available.

In the tables, normals are long-term means 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 10 years of record, as they cannot then be calculated reliably. The median is sometimes more representative than the mean of "normal" rain.

The normal for the state average statistics are calculated over the period from 1961 to 1990, the World Meteorological Organization standard.

The Rank indicates how rainfall this time compares with the climate record for the site, based on the decile ranking (very low rainfall is in decile 1, low in decile 2 or 3, normal in decile 4 to 7, high in decile 8 or 9 and very high is in decile 10).
The Fraction of normal shows how much rain has fallen this time as a percentage of the long-term mean.

Further information

Ian Barnes-Keoghan
Tasmania and Antarctica Climate Services Centre
Bureau of Meteorology
Phone (03) 6221 2043
Email climate.tas@bom.gov.au