Australia in winter 2019

In Brief

  • Warmer than average winter for Australia
  • Mean maximum temperature warmer than average for winter over most of Australia; sixth-warmest winter days on record nationally
  • Amongst the ten warmest winter mean maximum temperature on record for New South Wales and Western Australia
  • Rainfall below average for most of Australia; however, near average or above average for northern Queensland, large parts of western and southern Victoria, much of Tasmania, and much of the west of Western Australia

Temperatures

Winter was warmer than average for Australia, with days particularly warm. The national mean maximum temperature for winter was the sixth-warmest on record for Australia (1.17 °C warmer than average). The mean minimum temperature for Australia was 0.26 °C warmer than average.

The mean maximum temperature for winter was the fifth-warmest on record for New South Wales and the second-warmest on record for Western Australia.

The mean maximum temperature for the month was above or very much above average across most of Australia, but near-average for much of northern Queensland, part of the eastern to central Northern Territory, much of the agricultural districts of South Australia, and parts of western and northern country Victoria, extending into part of the southern Riverina in New South Wales.

Maxima for the season were amongst the warmest 10% of historical observations (decile 10) for much of the east coast of Australia, a pocket of east coast Tasmania, and large parts of Western Australia along the west coast, eastern Pilbara, western Kimberley, and northern Interior. A large number of sites in New South Wales observed record high mean winter maximum temperatures, with several others also observing their warmest winter mean temperature overall.

A very warm day in late August was observed in Western Australia under the influence of warm northeasterly winds. Many sites in the west of the South West Land Division observed record-high daily temperatures for winter on the 28th.

Minimum temperature was mixed across the country. Winter mean minimum temperature was cooler than average for the Top End in the Northern Territory and much of Central Australia, large parts of South Australia, patches of western and inland southeastern New South Wales, and an area of the Nullarbor coast in Western Australia. Winter mean minimum temperature was warmer than average for large parts of western and central Western Australia; an area around the Gulf Coast and across the south of the Top End; areas along the coast between southeastern Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, and southeastern South Australia; and around the west and south of Tasmania.

A cold night in June saw some daily records for lowest winter temperature on record set in South Australia between the 22nd and 24th.

The eight months of the year to date has been very warm for the country as a whole; Australia observed its second-warmest mean temperature on record for January–August. The mean maximum and mean minimum temperature have also been very warm; respectively they were the highest and equal-sixth-highest on record for Australia over the same period.


Areal average temperatures
Maximum Temperature Minimum Temperature Mean Temperature
Rank
(of 110)
Anomaly
(°C)
Comment Rank
(of 110)
Anomaly
(°C)
Comment Rank
(of 110)
Anomaly
(°C)
Comment
Australia 105 +1.17 6th highest 71 +0.26 96 +0.71
Queensland 92 +0.88 84 +0.72 92 +0.80
New South Wales 106 +1.44 5th highest = 80 +0.53 103 +0.99 8th highest
Victoria 87 +0.49 89 +0.52 95 +0.51
Tasmania 91 +0.36 = 68 +0.22 83 +0.30
South Australia = 98 +1.06 = 36 −0.45 = 75 +0.31
Western Australia 109 +1.64 2nd highest (record +2.02 °C in 2017) 75 +0.20 = 104 +0.92 equal 6th highest
Northern Territory 87 +0.73 57 +0.07 74 +0.40

Rank ranges from 1 (lowest) to 110 (highest). A rank marked with ’=‘ indicates the value is tied for that rank. Anomaly is the departure from the long-term (1961–1990) average.


Temperature maps
MeanAnomalyDeciles
Mean
daily
maximum
temperatures
Map of mean daily maximum temperature Map of mean daily maximum temperature anomalies Map of mean daily maximum temperature deciles
Mean
daily
minimum
temperatures
Map of mean daily minimum temperature Map of mean daily minimum temperature anomalies Map of mean daily minimum temperature deciles
Mean
daily
temperatures
Map of mean daily temperature Map of mean daily temperature anomalies Map of mean daily temperature deciles

Rainfall

Rainfall for winter was below to very much below average for most of Australia, including New South Wales, southern and western Queensland, parts of northern and eastern Victoria, east coast Tasmania, the majority of South Australia and the Northern Territory, and most of the eastern half of Western Australia, and some coastal areas in the west of that State.

Rainfall for the season was amongst the lowest 10% of historical records for much of New South Wales and southern Queensland, and much of South Australia. Much of the north and interior of Australia is seasonally dry during winter.

A number of stations in New South Wales, and a few in South Australia and Queensland observed their driest winter on record or driest winter in at least 20 years.

However, a strong cold front and associated cloud band which brought heavy rainfall to South Australia on 12 June saw some sites set daily rainfall records for winter.

Winter rainfall was above average for western Tasmania, pockets of southern Victoria, and an area of central Queensland. Near-average rainfall was observed over much of northern Queensland and around the Gulf Coast, western and southern Victoria, central and much of northern Tasmania, and parts of the west of Western Australia.

For the year to date (January–August), rainfall has been below to very much below average over much of Australia. For Australia as a whole, it was the fifth-driest January–August on record, and amongst the ten driest on record for New South Wales, South Australia, Western Australia, and the Northern Territory.


Area-average rainfall
Rank
(of 120)
Average
(mm)
Departure
from mean
Comment
Australia 9 36.4 −43% 9th lowest; lowest since 2002
Queensland 24 24.6 −52%
New South Wales 4 44.5 −62% 4th lowest (record 30.7 mm in 1940)
Victoria 39 179.9 −11%
Tasmania 86 493.7 +13%
South Australia 10 24.8 −55% 10th lowest; lowest since 2007
Western Australia 21 40.5 −33%
Northern Territory 6 0.6 −97% 6th lowest; lowest since 2002
Murray-Darling Basin 4 48.4 −56% 4th lowest (record 26.5 mm in 1982)

Rank ranges from 1 (lowest) to 120 (highest). A rank marked with ’=‘ indicates the value is tied for that rank. Departure from mean is relative to the long-term (1961–1990) average.


Rainfall maps
TotalsPercentagesDeciles
Total
rainfall
Map of total rainfall Map of percentage of normal rain Map of rainfall deciles


Australian weather extremes in winter 2019
Hottest day 37.9 °C    at Kalumburu (WA) on 19 August
Coldest day −5.2 °C    at Thredbo AWS (NSW) on 13 July
Coldest night −12.3 °C    at Glen Innes Airport AWS (NSW) on 19 July
Warmest night 25.9 °C    at Coconut Island (Qld) on 2 June
Wettest day 145.2 mm at Whoota (NSW) on 5 June


Notes

The Seasonal Climate Summary is prepared to list the main features of the weather in Australia using the most timely and accurate information available on the date of publication; it will generally not be updated. Later information, including data that has had greater opportunity for quality control, will be presented in the Monthly Weather Review, usually published in the fourth week of the month.

Climate Summaries are usually published on the first working day of each month.

This statement has been prepared based on information available at 1 pm EST on Monday 2 August 2019. Some checks have been made on the data, but it is possible that results will change as new information becomes available, especially for rainfall where much more data becomes available as returns are received from volunteers.

Long-term averages in this statement and associated tables are for the period 1961 to 1990 unless otherwise specified. Temperature area averages are derived from the ACORN-SAT version 2 dataset. Rainfall area averages, along with rainfall and temperature maps, are derived from the AWAP dataset.


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