Adelaide
Climate overview

Rainfall

Rainfall across the Adelaide region was generally average to above average for the 2013–14 year. Above average rainfall was experienced in the north and southwest of the region, while Adelaide city and to the south of the city exhibited average rainfall (Figure C1). The total area-averaged rainfall over the Adelaide region during the 2013–14 year was 712 mm, which is above the long-term area-averaged rainfall of 634 mm (based on the 1900–2014 period).

The 2013–14 conditions represent an increase in rainfall compared to the 2012–13 year (see the 2013 Account), where total area-avereged rainfall was 443 mm and most of the region experienced below average to very much below average conditions. The increase in rainfall in 2013–14 contributed to above average flows in the major river systems in the region (see Water overview ) as well as increased inflows into the major water storages during the year (see the Surface water section of the 'Supporting information for water accounting statements' note).

 

Figure C1 Map of annual rainfall deciles for the Adelaide region during the 2013–14 year
Figure C1 Map of annual rainfall deciles for the Adelaide region during the 2013–14 year
 

 

The majority of the region experienced rainfalls that exceeded 700 mm, with an area to the east of Adelaide city observing over 900mm (Figure C2).

 

Figure C2 Map of total annual rainfall for the Adelaide region during the 2013–14 year
Figure C2 Map of total annual rainfall for the Adelaide region during the 2013–14 year

 

Rainfall was well below average in much of eastern Australia during the 2013-14 year, while rainfall was well above average in parts of southern and northern central Australia and the southeast coast. There were no strong influences from large-scale drivers during the reporting year, with a short-lived negative Indian Ocean Dipole event decaying at the start of the year. The El Niño-Southern Oscillation was neutral for most of the year, although rapid warming of the eastern Pacific towards the end of the year caused an El Niño Alert to be issued in April.

Above average rainfall was observed in July–August 2013, and in February, April and June 2014. The rainfall recorded in February exceeded the 90th percentile with 86 mm falling in the region, well above the long-term February average of 24 mm (Figure C3). July 2013 was the region's wettest month of the 2013–14 year recording 128 mm.


Figure C3 Total monthly rainfall for the Adelaide region during the 2013–14 year compared with the long-term average and percentiles for the region
Figure C3 Total monthly rainfall for the Adelaide region during the 2013–14 year compared with the long-term average and percentiles for the region


Evapotranspiration

Potential evapotranspiration across the Adelaide region for the 2013–14 year was generally average to above average, with an area of below average potential evapotranspiration to the south (Figure C4).

 

Figure C4 Map of annual evapotranspiration deciles for the Adelaide region during the 2013–14 year
Figure C4 Map of annual evapotranspiration deciles for the Adelaide region during the 2013–14 year

 

The potential evaporation estimate was produced by the Australian Water Resources Assessment system landscape model (AWRA-L) version 3.0 (Van Dijk 2010). The AWRA-L model uses a modified version of the Penman–Monteith method to produce the potential evaporation. Daily AWRA-L potential evaporation grids were produced based on daily gridded climate data that were available on a 0.050 degree (approximately 5 km) national grid.

The total area-averaged potential evapotranspiration over the Adelaide region during the 2013–14 year was 1,042 mm, which is approximately 1% higher than the long-term area-averaged potential evapotranspiration of 1,028 mm (based on the 1970–2014 period). Potential evapotranspiration was reasonably uniform across the region, although higher potential evapotranspiration was reported closer to the coast (Figure C5).

 


Figure C5 Map of total annual evapotranspiration for the Adelaide region during the 2012–13 year
Figure C5 Map of total annual evapotranspiration for the Adelaide region during the 2012–13 year

 

Temperature

The Australian area-averaged mean temperatures were highest on record for the 12-month period ending June 2014. The mean temperature for the Adelaide region for the 2013–14 year was 16 °C. As seen in Figure C6, the entire Adelaide region experienced mean temperatures that were very much above the long-term average of 15 °C.

 

Figure C6 Map of annual mean temperature deciles for the Adelaide region during the 2013–14 year
Figure C6 Map of annual mean temperature deciles for the Adelaide region during the 2013–14 year
 

 

Annual mean temperatures across the region were generally above 15 °C (Figure C7). Even though very much above average temperatures were observed in the region the potential evapotranspiration was only slightly above average (see Evapotranspiration). This is likely due to the below average rainfall year experienced during 2012–13 where soil moisture levels were depleted and therefore reducing the amount of water available in the soil for evapotranspiration. Some western parts of the region exhibited slightly cooler mean temperatures for the year.

 

Figure C7 Map of annual mean temperature for the Adelaide region during the 2013–14 year
Figure C7 Map of annual mean temperature for the Adelaide region during the 2013–14 year
 

 

Monthly mean temperatures for the Adelaide region were above the long-term average for all months during the 2013–14 year (Figure C8), with the exception of November which recorded slightly less than the long-term average. Throughout much of the year, temperatures trended towards the 90th percentile, with several months (July–September, January and May–June) ranking slightly above the 90th percentile.

 

Figure C8 Average monthly mean temperature for the Adelaide region during the 2013–14 year compared with the long-term average and percentiles for the region
Figure C8 Monthly mean temperature for the Adelaide region during the 2013–14 year compared with the long-term average and percentiles for the region