Drought Statement - Issued 2nd December 2005


drought_text.html

Statement on Drought for the 9 and 11-month periods ending 30th November 2005
ISSUED 2nd December 2005 by the National Climate Centre

Further easing of deficiencies in southern Queensland

Following good falls in October, above to very much above average rainfall for November removed or significantly eased rainfall deficiencies in parts of southern Queensland, the Bureau of Meteorology announced today. However, average to below average falls in parts of southern Victoria saw rainfall deficiencies remain or intensify in that region.

For the 9-month period from March to November, serious rainfall deficiencies, with patches of severe deficiencies, affect much of southern Victoria between the SA border and Sale in Gippsland. November rainfall was below the long-term mean in southwest Victoria resulting in a slight intensification of the deficits in comparison with the situation at the end of October. This most recent period of deficient rainfall in southern Victoria is included within a period of below average to record low 9-year rainfall totals in the same area.

For the 11-month period from January to November, the most significant rainfall deficiencies are located between Bourke (NSW) and Charleville (Qld). These decreased in intensity and spatial extent following average to above average falls in November. Further to the east in the Darling Downs and Granite Belt district and the adjacent border regions of northern NSW, November rainfall was sufficient to remove the deficits that had been evident at the end of October.

Other parts of the country experiencing rainfall deficiencies over this period include the southeastern inland of WA (around Laverton), and parts of Cape York Peninsula in north Queensland.

Rainfall deficiency maps for longer periods indicate that deficiencies at the three year timescale, which are particularly relevant to water supplies, remain prevalent in parts of eastern Australia, especially in Queensland.


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

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

Very much 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%
Very much above average - rainfalls in the highest 10% of historical totals


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
David Jones on (03) 9669 4085
Blair Trewin on (03) 9669 4603

External Sites Relating to Drought

The Bureau of Meteorology does not make formal drought declarations as these are done by the relevant State Government Departments. The Bureau of Rural Sciences (BRS), a scientific agency within the Federal department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry (DAFF), administers the Drought Exceptional Circumstances program.



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