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Canberra

                                                                                                   

Climate Overview

                             

Maps and graphs provide a summary of the rainfall, evaporation and temperature data for the reporting period.

 

Rainfall

The total area-averaged rainfall over the Canberra region during 2009–10 was 810 mm, slightly above the mean annual rainfall of 791 mm. Figure C1 shows that average rainfall was experienced across most of the region. Rainfall was above average over a small area in the southeast of the region only.

 

Figure C1. Map of annual rainfall deciles for the Canberra region during 2009–10

Figure C1. Map of annual rainfall deciles for the Canberra region during 2009–10

There was a strong gradient in rainfall across the Canberra region in 2009–10 (Figure C2), ranging from more than 1,100 mm along the western boundary to less than 700 mm over the north of the region, around the city of Canberra and Queanbeyan. This rainfall distribution was typical of annual rainfall for the region (Figure C3).

The area-averaged monthly rainfall for 2009–10 shows that generally average rainfall occurred throughout most of the year for the Canberra region (Figure C4). Only during February was rainfall well above average, attributed to a low pressure trough and upper level low that occurred during a three-day period in mid-February bringing high rainfall to the region.

Figure C2. Map of total annual rainfall for the Canberra region during 2009–10

Figure C2. Map of total annual rainfall for the Canberra region during 2009–10

Figure C3. Map of average annual rainfall for the Canberra region, based on data collected 1961–90

Figure C3. Map of average annual rainfall for the Canberra region, based on data collected 1961–90

Figure C4. Graph of total monthly rainfall for the Canberra region during 2009–10 compared against the long-term percentiles for the region

Figure C4. Graph of total monthly rainfall for the Canberra region during 2009–10 compared against the long-term percentiles for the region

 

Evaporation

The total area-averaged evapotranspiration (ET) over the Canberra region during 2009–10 was 608 mm, which is similar to the mean annual ET of 615 mm. Figure C5 shows that ET was generally equivalent to average conditions across the entire region during 2009-10. ET was only below average over a small area to the north of the Canberra region.

During 2009–10, there was a strong gradient in annual ET across the region (Figure C6), ranging from more than 700 mm along the western boundary to less than 550 mm in the north around the city of Canberra. The distribution of ET across the Canberra region during 2009–10 is relatively similar to the long-term average annual ET pattern (Figure C7)

Figure C5. Map of annual evapotranspiration deciles for the Canberra region during 2009-10

Figure C5. Map of annual evapotranspiration deciles for the Canberra region during 2009–10

 Figure C6. Map of total annual evapotranspiration for the Canberra region during 2009-10

Figure C6. Map of total annual evapotranspiration for the Canberra region during 2009–10

 Figure C7. Map of average annual evapotranspiration for the Canberra region, based on modelled data from 1911-2010

Figure C7. Map of average annual evapotranspiration for the Canberra region, based on modelled data from 1911–2010

Temperature

Figure C8 shows that the entire Canberra region experienced maximum daily temperatures that were very much above average during 2009–10.

Maximum daily temperatures across the Canberra region were highest in the north around the city of Canberra and Hall, and lowest in the southwest of the region (Figure C9). This temperature pattern across the region during the reporting period is similar to the long-term average conditions (Figure C10).

The area-averaged monthly maximum daily temperatures were generally above average throughout most of the year (Figure C11) and were well above average during November. The region recorded its highest November temperatures on record, which was a result of a persistent high pressure system in the Tasman Sea that directed warm northwesterly airstreams over the region.

Figure C8. Map of annual maximum daily temperature deciles for the Canberra region during 2009–10

Figure C8. Map of annual maximum daily temperature deciles for the Canberra region during 2009–10

Figure C9. Map of annual mean maximum daily temperature for the Canberra region during 2009–10

Figure C9. Map of annual mean maximum daily temperature for the Canberra region during 2009–10

Figure C10. Map of average annual maximum daily temperature for the Canberra region based on data collected 1961–90

Figure C10. Map of average annual maximum daily temperature for the Canberra region based on data collected 1961–90

Figure C11. Graph of average monthly maximum daily temperature for the Canberra region during 2009–10 compared with the long-term percentiles for the region

Figure C11. Graph of average monthly maximum daily temperature for the Canberra region during 2009–10 compared with the long-term percentiles for the region