April drought statement: relief misses Qld, NE NSW

Beef Central, 09/05/2014

Rainfall received in April had little impact on Australia’s most severely affected drought affected areas, according to the latest monthly drought update issued this week by the Bureau of Meteorology.


The latest national drought map. To view in larger format, click on the image above.

Above average rainfall was recorded across a broad band of northern Western Australia down through South Australia and into western NSW and Victoria, courtesy of a slow moving trough which lined to copious tropical moisture.

However the above-average rainfall largely missed areas of rainfall deficiencies in Queensland and north-eastern New South Wales.

Large parts of central and southern Queensland received average rainfall with small areas of below average rainfall, mostly recorded around south-east Queensland and north-eastern New South Wales.

Rainfall for the northern wet season (October to April) was mostly above average to very much above average over the western half of the country, except for southwest Western Australia where rainfall was very much below average.

For the eastern half of Australia rainfall was average to below average. Short-term rainfall deficiencies for the period show up in a large area in southwest Western Australia, although the warmer months are typically a drier time of the year in southern Australia. Below-average rainfall was also recorded for parts of northeast New South Wales and southeast Queensland and small scattered areas through Queensland during this period.

Rainfall deficiencies for the 19-month (October 2012 to April 2014) period have eased in parts of Western Australia, western New South Wales and Victoria that received above-average rainfall in April. Elsewhere deficiencies remain largely unchanged.

Serious to severe deficiencies (lowest 10pc to 5pc of records) remain in central Queensland and in an area inland of the Great Dividing Range extending from southern Queensland into northern New South Wales as well as in areas around the Queensland–South Australian border (affecting the Northern Territory, South Australia, New South Wales and Queensland).

Isolated pockets of deficiencies remain in Victoria with a larger area of deficiencies persisting on the coast of Western Australia near Shark Bay.

More generally, the vast majority of eastern Australia has received below- to very-much-below-average rainfall for the 19-month period ending April 2014.


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