Drier autumn likely for southern and central Australia
March is likely to be drier than average across most of Australia, according to the Bureau of Meteorology’s seasonal climate outlook statement released this morning.
Western WA, the Top End of the NT, Cape York Peninsula in Queensland and parts of the NSW coast have roughly equal chances of a wetter or drier month.
The Bureau says Autumn (March to May) rainfall is likely to be below average for the southern two-thirds of Australia. Elsewhere, the chances of a wetter or drier season are roughly equal.
The drier than average outlooks are likely a result of forecast higher than normal pressure over western and southern Australia, meaning fewer rain-bearing systems are likely to cross the coast.
Historical outlook accuracy for March to May is moderate to high over eastern and northern Australia as well as parts of western WA, with mostly low accuracy elsewhere.
Autumn (March to May) maximum temperatures are likely to be warmer than average across most of Australia, except the northern NT, where daytime temperatures are likely to be cooler than average. Most of the country has high chances of warmer days, with the likelihood exceeding 75% across most of southern and eastern Australia.
Similarly, autumn minimum temperatures are likely to be warmer than average across most of Australia, but cooler than average in northern WA, and the northern NT.
Maximum temperature accuracy is moderate to high over most of Australia, except the southern mainland, where accuracy is low to very low. Minimum temperature accuracy is moderate to high over the northern half of Australia and Tasmania, and low to very low over the southern half of the mainland.
Source: Bureau of Meteorology
Nov 16-Jan 17 outlook vs Nov 16-Jan 17 rainfall actual (deciles)