Drought Statement


drought_text.html

MEDIA RELEASE - ISSUED 5th NOVEMBER 2001
Statement on Drought for the 6, 8 & 11-month periods ending 31st October 2001

Deficiencies ease in Victoria, persist in W.A. and Queensland

The Bureau of Meteorology announced today that above average October rains helped ease rainfall deficiencies in southern Victoria. However, there was little change to the patterns of deficiencies affecting southeast Queensland and the west of Western Australia.

Large regions in southern and western W.A. have serious to severe deficiencies for the eight-month period from March to October. There was some slight easing in areas north of about Geraldton following above average falls in October, but average to below average October rainfall further south meant the pattern was generally unchanged through this region. Totals were the lowest on record for this particular period near the far southwest corner of the State, and to the east of Carnarvon. Most of western and southern W.A. also experienced rainfall deficiencies during the 2000 southern growing season.

There was little change in the pattern of Queensland rainfall deficits which reflect continued below average falls following poor summer rains. For the eleven months from December 2000 to October, serious to severe rainfall deficiencies affect most coastal areas from St. Lawrence to Brisbane, as well as a broad sweep of country centred on a line from Roma to Gladstone. Southeast Queensland also experienced well below average rainfall last year.

Rainfall deficiencies have waxed and waned across southern Victoria in recent months with heavy October rain following a dry September. As a result, deficits near and to the east of Melbourne eased significantly for the period beginning in May. However, Melbourne's water reserves remain well below full capacity after five years of generally below average rainfall.

Rainfall deficiency maps for standard periods (3, 6, 9, 12, 18, 24 and 36 months) are updated monthly on the Bureau's web site, at http://www.bom.gov.au/cgi-bin/silo/rain_maps.cgi .


Note: The terms used to describe rainfall in these Drought Statements have the following meanings -

Well below average - rainfalls in the lowest 10% of historical totals
Below average - rainfalls in the lowest 30% of historical totals, but not in the lowest 10%
Average - rainfalls in the middle 40% of historical totals
Above average - rainfalls in the highest 30% of historical totals, but not in the highest 10%
Well above average - rainfalls in the highest 10% of historical totals
Serious deficiency - rainfalls in the lowest 10% of historical totals, but not in the lowest 5%
Severe deficiency - rainfalls in the lowest 5% of historical totals
Lowest on record - lowest since at least 1900 when the data analysed begin


For more information regarding this rainfall deficiencies statement, please contact the following climate meteorologists during normal business hours (EST) Monday to Friday:

Grant Beard on (03) 9669 4527
Robert Fawcett on (03) 9669 4603



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