Greater Melbourne in 2021: mostly wetter than average with close to average temperatures

Rainfall in 2021 was above average actoss Melbourne's northern and western suburbs, but tended towards below average rainfall for some southern and eastern suburbs; particularly wet were January, June and October. Mean daytime and night-time temperatures were generally close to long-term averages at all reporting sites.

Wetter than average in the north and west, drier in the south and east

  • Rainfall in 2021 was above average actoss Melbourne's northern and western suburbs, but tended towards below average rainfall for some southern and eastern suburbs.
  • Annual rainfall totals ranged from 89% of average at Cerberus to 126% of average at Wallan (Kilmore Gap).
  • The year started with a wetter than average January; averaged across all reporting sites in Greater Melbourne, this was the wettest January since 2011.
  • June, September and October were also wetter than average months for Greater Melbourne.
  • In June, a significant rain event resulted in the Melbourne region's wettest day of the year, with 188.2 mm recorded at Gladysdale on the 10th.
  • February was much drier than average, with all sites receiving less than a half of their average February rainfall.
  • Rainfall in April, August, and December was below average in most suburbs.
  • The wettest place in Greater Melbourne in 2021 was Ferny Creek, with an annual total of 1466.8 mm.
  • Melbourne city (Olympic Park)'s driest month for 2021 was February, with a total of just 9.2 mm; its wettest month was October, with 110.4 mm (Melbourne's wettest October since 2010).

Close to average temperatures

  • Mean maximum temperatures for the year were generally close to average at most reporting sites.
  • Mean maximum temperatures ranged from 0.6 °C below average at Viewbank to 0.2 °C above average at Scoreby Research.
  • February, March and November days were cooler than average in Greater Melbourne, while May, June, August and September were warmer than average.
  • The highest temperature in Greater Melbourne during the year was 41.5 °C at Laverton RAAF on 25 January; most reporting sites had their highest daytime temperature for the year on this day.
  • Mean minimum temperatures for the year were close to average at most reporting sites.
  • Mean minimum temperatures were generally close to average across Greater Melbourne in most months, but were generally warmer than average in July, August and September.
  • Melbourne (Olympic Park) failed to reach 40.0 °C during 2021. This is only the third calendar year this century that the Melbourne city site did not record a daily maximum temperature of at least 40.0 °C (previously it happened in 2002 and 2017).

Melbourne (Olympic Park)

  • Total rainfall for Melbourne (Olympic Park) was 682.6 mm.
  • The mean daily maximum temperature for Melbourne (Olympic Park) was 19.9 °C.
  • The warmest day was 39.2 °C on 25 January, and the coolest day was on 3 July when the temperature reached 10.6 °C.
  • The mean daily minimum temperature for Melbourne (Olympic Park) was 11.2 °C.
  • The coldest morning was 1.7 °C on 30 May, and the warmest morning was on 25 January when the minimum temperature was 22.2 °C.

Further information

Media
(03) 9669 4057

Extremes in 2021
Hottest day 41.5 °C at Laverton RAAF on 25 Jan
Warmest days on average 20.3 °C at Viewbank
Coolest days on average 16.0 °C at Ferny Creek
Coldest day 4.0 °C at Wallan (Kilmore Gap) on 3 Jul
Coldest night -3.7 °C at Coldstream on 22 May
Coolest nights on average 7.6 °C at Coldstream
Warmest nights on average 11.2 °C at Melbourne (Olympic Park)
Warmest night 26.2 °C at Ferny Creek on 25 Jan
Warmest on average overall 15.5 °C at Melbourne (Olympic Park)
Coolest on average overall 12.1 °C at Wallan (Kilmore Gap)
Wettest overall 1466.8 mm at Ferny Creek
Wettest day 188.2 mm at Gladysdale (Little Feet Farm) on 10 Jun
Strongest wind gust 135 km/h at South Channel Island on 29 Oct

Record highest daily rainfall
New record
(mm)
Old
record
Years of
record
Hesket (Straws Lane) 126.4 on 10 Jun 118.4 on 3 Jan 1970 51
Gladysdale (Little Feet Farm) 188.2 on 10 Jun 87.0 on 30 Jul 1996 36
Tarrawarra Monastery 81.0 on 10 Jun 73.0 on 3 Feb 2005 36



Highest annual total rainfall for at least 20 years
Observed
(mm)
Most recent
higher
Annual
average
Bullengarook East 1029.7 1087.2 in 1985* 782.1

* note: there are gaps in the historical record at this site, so it is possible a higher value has gone unreported




Summary statistics for 2021
Maximum temperatures
(°C)
Minimum temperatures
(°C)
Rainfall
(millimetres)
Mean
for
2021
Diff
from
average
Highest
for
2021
Mean
for
2021
Diff
from
average
Lowest
for
2021
Total
for
2021
Average
annual
total
Rank
of
2021
Fraction
of annual
average
Cerberus 19.3 +0.1 38.5 31 Dec 9.8 0.0 -1.1 31 May 642.0 717.5 low 89%
Coldstream 20.1 -0.4 39.2 25 Jan 7.6 +0.1 -3.7 22 May
Essendon Airport 19.9 +0.1 40.7 25 Jan 10.1 +0.7 -0.3 8 Jul 646.6 585.7 average 110%
Ferny Creek 16.0   34.3 31 Dec 8.6   1.3 21 Sep 1466.8
Frankston (Ballam Park) 19.3   38.3 25 Jan 10.3   1.3 9 Jul 800.2
Laverton RAAF 19.8 0.0 41.5 25 Jan 9.9 +0.5 -0.3 31 May 579.2 533.6 average 109%
Melbourne (Olympic Park) 19.9   39.2 25 Jan 11.2   1.7 30 May 682.6
Melbourne Airport 19.8 -0.1 40.5 25 Jan 9.3 -0.3 -0.1 9 Jul 666.0 537.5 high 124%
Moorabbin Airport 19.9 0.0 40.6 25 Jan 10.5 +0.3 0.6 31 May 681.2 705.0 average 97%
Scoresby Research Institute 19.9 +0.2 39.9 25 Jan 9.6 0.0 -0.4 9 Jul 836.4 855.1 average 98%
Viewbank 20.3 -0.6 40.8 25 Jan 9.6 -0.4 -0.8 9 Jul 838.8 669.8 high 125%
Wallan (Kilmore Gap) 16.4 -0.5 36.8 25 Jan 7.9 -0.2 0.4 29 Jul 868.6 690.4 high 126%

Notes

The Annual climate summary lists the main features of the weather in Greater Melbourne using the most timely and accurate information available on the date of publication; it will generally not be updated. More extensive discussion of significant weather events, along with later information and data that has had greater opportunity for quality control, will be presented in the Monthly Weather Review.

This summary includes data from observing sites in or near the Greater Melbourne “Greater Capital City Statistical Area” (GCCSA). The Australian Bureau of Statistics designed the GCCSAs to “include the population within the urban area of the city, as well as people who regularly socialise, shop or work within the city, and live in small towns and rural areas surrounding the city. It is important to note that GCCSAs do not define the built up edge of the city. They provide a stable definition for these cities and are designed for the output of a range of social and economic survey data.

This statement has been prepared based on information available at 5 pm on Monday 7 February 2022. Some checks have been made on the data, but it is possible that results will change as new information becomes available.

In some situations, some or all of the rainfall is in the form of hail or snow. In these cases the totals given are for the water equivalent: the depth of liquid water that results from melting any frozen precipitation. There can be significant 'undercatch' of snow in strong winds, meaning the true precipitation can be higher than that reported.

Averages for individual sites 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 long-term average rain.

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, average in decile 4 to 7, high in decile 8 or 9 and very high is in decile 10).
The Fraction of average shows how much rain has fallen this time as a percentage of the long-term mean.

Where temperature area averages are mentioned, they are derived from the ACORN-SAT dataset.

Further information

Media
(03) 9669 4057

Creative Commons By Attribution logo Unless otherwise noted, all maps, graphs and diagrams in this page are licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Licence

Climate