Statement on Drought for the 4 and 7-month
periods ending 30th April 2006
ISSUED 5th May 2006 by the National Climate Centre
Rainfall deficiencies continue in NSW and southern Queensland
A dry start to the year has seen short-term rainfall
deficiencies emerge across parts of eastern Australia, especially
over inland eastern Queensland and parts of New South Wales, the Bureau of Meteorology announced
today. Furthermore, the northern wet season was
very dry and hot in southwest Queensland and northwest NSW.
For the 4-month period from January to April,
serious to severe rainfall deficiencies have developed over an area of eastern Queensland
near and to the west of the Great Dividing Range, stretching from near Moranbah
to around Gympie. Serious to severe rainfall deficiencies have also
developed along the NSW coast south of Sydney, over an area of inland
south-central NSW centred on Grenfell, and some small areas in far
southwest Queensland and adjacent northwest NSW.
Above-normal April rainfall has eliminated short-term rainfall deficiencies
in northern and central Tasmania, except for a small area in the far northeast.
April rains have also removed small areas of rainfall deficiencies that
had existed in northern South Australia and the southern Northern Territory.
For the 7-month period from October to April,
serious rainfall deficiencies, with patches of severe deficiencies,
affect substantial areas in far southwest Queensland and adjacent far northwest NSW.
The dry conditions have been exacerbated by
very much above average to record high temperatures, particularly during the summer.
Deficiencies in the Mackay area have been eliminated by April rainfall.
Above-normal rainfall in April has eliminated nearly all longer-term rainfall deficiencies
that had existed in southern Victoria for the period commencing in April 2005. This
period is no longer being monitored.
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 -
- rainfalls in the lowest 10% of historical totals,
but not in the lowest 5%
- 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
- rainfalls in the lowest 30% of historical totals,
but not in the lowest 10%
- rainfalls in the middle 40% of historical totals
- 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:
Blair Trewin on (03) 9669 4603
Andrew Watkins on (03) 9669 4360
External Sites Relating to Drought
The Bureau of Meteorology does not make formal drought declarations
as these are done by either the relevant State Governments or by the
Australian Government. The Australian Government Program is called
and it is administered by the Federal Department of Agriculture,
Fisheries and Forestry (DAFF). General information about Australian
Government drought assistance is available at