Drought Statement - Issued 4th June 2003


drought_text.html

Statement on Drought for the 3 and 14-month periods ending 31st May 2003
ISSUED 4th June 2003

Autumn: Rainfall deficiencies develop over some southern parts

The Commonwealth Bureau of Meteorology announced today that autumn rainfall was well below average across some parts of southern Australia that experienced severe rainfall deficiencies last year.

For the 3-month period from March to May 2003, serious to severe rainfall deficiencies were recorded over an area extending from Beechworth in far northern Victoria to parts of inland southeastern NSW, over a smaller area just north of Euston in NSW, and over parts of southwestern SA. Serious deficiencies also occurred in the southwestern fringe of Victoria and around Keith in southeastern SA. Autumn rainfall was also below average across western and southern Victoria, much of southern SA and remaining parts of inland southern NSW.

Serious to severe rainfall deficiencies continue over much of eastern Australia, as well as around Giles in central Australia and between Carnarvon and Geraldton in Western Australia for the 14-month period from April 2002 to May 2003.


Rainfall deficiency maps for standard periods (3, 6, 9, 12, 18, 24 and 36 months) are updated monthly on the Bureau's web site. Rainfall maps for the southern and northern wet seasons are also available from this source.

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 in the National Climate Centre:

Grant Beard on (03) 9669 4527
Blair Trewin on (03) 9669 4603



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