Weekly update - 20 December 2018

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Weekly ​Australian Climate,
Water and Agricultural Update

Key issues

  • During the week ending 19 December 2018 widespread rainfall was recorded across large areas of eastern and northern Australia.
  • In summer cropping regions, rainfall of between 1 and 25 millimetres was recorded across much of northern New South Wales and northern Queensland during the week ending 19 December 2018. Higher falls in excess of 25 millimetres were recorded across eastern areas of New South Wales and southern and northern cropping regions in Queensland.
  • For the week ending 18 December 2018, maximum and minimum temperatures were generally average across much of Australia.
  • The latest rainfall outlook released by the Bureau of Meteorology indicates that a drier than average January is more likely for much of Western Australia, and parts of northern and western Queensland and the Northern Territory.
  • The rainfall outlook for January to March 2019 indicates that a drier than average three months is more likely for much of northern and inland New South Wales, eastern and southern Queensland, eastern Victoria, Western Australia and parts of South Australia and the Northern Territory. For the remainder of the country there is roughly equal chances of a wetter or drier three months.
  • During the next eight days, rainfall is expected to be restricted to the far east and north of Australia.
  • In summer cropping regions, rainfall of between 5 and 10 millimetres is expected across parts of northern and eastern Queensland. Little to no rainfall is expected across the remainder of Queensland and New South Wales summer cropping regions.
  • Water storage levels in the Murray–Darling Basin (MDB) increased during the week ending 20 December 2018 by 97 gigalitres (GL) to 12,066 GL and are at 48 per cent of total capacity.
  • Allocation prices in the southern Murray-Darling Basin increased in the week ending 10 December  2018 to $402 per ML. This is an increase of $21 from the same time last week.

Climate

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Rainfall this week

During the week ending 19 December 2018 widespread rainfall was recorded across large areas of eastern and northern Australia. Rainfall totals of between 10 and 50 millimetres were recorded across eastern and southern New South Wales, Victoria, much of Queensland, parts of southern and northern South Australia, Tasmania, scattered areas of northern and southern Western Australia, and the north of the Northern Territory.

Higher rainfall totals in excess of 50 millimetres were recorded across parts of eastern and southern New South Wales, northern and eastern Queensland, larges areas of Victoria, north-eastern Tasmania and the north of the Northern Territory.

In summer cropping regions, rainfall of between 1 and 25 millimetres was recorded across much of northern New South Wales and northern Queensland during the week ending 19 December 2018. Higher falls in excess of 25 millimetres were recorded across eastern areas of New South Wales and southern and northern cropping regions in Queensland.

Rainfall analysis for the week ending 19 December 2018

Map showing weekly rainfall totals in Australia. Image provided by the Bureau of Meteorology. Please refer to accompanying text for a more detailed description. 

©Commonwealth of Australia 2018, Australian Bureau of Meteorology - Issued: 19/12/2018

Note: The rainfall analyses and associated maps utilise data contained in the Bureau of Meteorology climate database, the Australian Data Archive for Meteorology (ADAM). The analyses are initially produced automatically from real-time data with limited quality control. They are intended to provide a general overview of rainfall across Australia as quickly as possible after the observations are received. For further information go to Weekly Rainfall Update.

Temperature anomalies this week

For the week ending 18 December 2018, maximum and minimum temperatures were generally average across much of Australia. Maximum and minimum temperatures were 2°C to 6°C above average across large areas of north-eastern Western Australia and the Northern Territory, parts of the eastern seaboard and Tasmania. Meanwhile, maximum temperatures were -2°C to -6°C below average across parts of southern Australia for the week ending 18 December 2018.

Maximum temperature anomalies for the week ending 18 December 2018

Map showing maximum temperature anomalies for Australia. Image provided by the Bureau of Meteorology. Please refer to accompanying text for a more detailed description. 

©Commonwealth of Australia 2018, Australian Bureau of Meteorology - Issued: 19/12/2018

Minimum temperature anomalies for the week ending 18 December 2018

Map showing minimum temperature anomalies for Australia. Image provided by the Bureau of Meteorology. Please refer to accompanying text for a more detailed description. 

©Commonwealth of Australia 2018, Australian Bureau of Meteorology - Issued: 19/12/2018

Note: Spatial temperature analyses are based on historical weekly temperature data provided by the Bureau of Meteorology. These temperature anomaly maps show the departure of the maximum and minimum temperatures from the average over the 1961 to 1990 reference period. For further information go to Daily maximum temperature for Australia.

National Climate Outlook

The rainfall and temperature outlooks presented here show the likelihood, represented as a percentage, of experiencing wetter or drier (and warmer or cooler) than median climatic conditions for the given outlook periods. These climate outlooks are generated by ACCESS–S (Australian Community Climate Earth-System Simulator–Seasonal). ACCESS–S is the Bureau of Meteorology's dynamical (physics-based) weather and climate model used for monthly, seasonal and longer-lead climate outlooks.

For further information, go to About the climate outlooks

While tropical Pacific Ocean waters have warmed above levels consistent with an El Niño, the atmospheric component of the El Niño–Southern Oscillation (ENSO) has not responded, meaning an El Niño event is yet to become established. This means that the typical widespread influence on global and Australian climate and weather is currently unlikely. Climate models suggest that tropical Pacific Ocean waters are likely to remain at El Niño levels through the coming months, which will increase the chance of the atmosphere responding, particularly later in the season. Additionally, waters off the north-west of Western Australia are expected to remain cooler than average through the coming months, reducing the potential for moisture to be evaporated off the eastern Indian Ocean, and therefore likely limiting moisture flowing into Western Australia.

In contrast to typical El Niño events, warmer than average waters are forecast to persist across the Top End, the Gulf of Carpentaria, and right down the east coast of the continent. This may lead to a more volatile rainfall pattern, with brief periods of high rainfall when weather patterns draw moisture from the warm seas inland. 

The latest rainfall outlook released by the Bureau of Meteorology indicates that a drier than average January is more likely for much of Western Australia, and parts of northern and western Queensland and the Northern Territory. For the remainder of the country there are roughly equal chances of a wetter or drier than average January (Bureau of Meteorology ‘National Climate Outlook’, 20 December 2018).

Chance of exceeding the median rainfall January 2019

 

The rainfall outlook for January to March 2019 indicates that a drier than average three months is more likely for much of northern and inland New South Wales, eastern and southern Queensland, eastern Victoria, Western Australia and parts of South Australia and the Northern Territory. For the remainder of the country there are roughly equal chances of a wetter or drier three months (Bureau of Meteorology ‘National Climate Outlook’, 20 December 2018).

Chance of exceeding the median rainfall January to March 2019

 

The temperature outlook for January to March 2019 indicates that daytime temperatures are more likely to be warmer than average for Australia. Night-time temperatures are also likely to be warmer than average for much of the country, with the exception of the west of Western Australia, where the chances of warmer or cooler nights are roughly equal (Bureau of Meteorology ‘National Climate Outlook’, 20 December 2018).

Chance of exceeding the median maximum temperature January to March 2019

 

Chance of exceeding the median minimum temperature January to March 2019

 

Rainfall forecast for the next 8 days

During the next eight days, rainfall is expected to be restricted to the far east and north of Australia. Rainfall totals of between 10 and 50 millimetres are forecast for much of eastern New South Wales, eastern Victoria, eastern and northern Queensland, parts of northern and southern Tasmania, northern Western Australia and the north of the Northern Territory. Heavier falls in excess of 50 millimetres are forecast for northern Queensland and the far north of the Northern Territory.

In summer cropping regions, rainfall of between 5 and 10 millimetres is expected across parts of northern and eastern Queensland. Little to no rainfall is expected across the remainder of Queensland and New South Wales summer cropping regions.

This rainfall forecast is produced from computer models. As the model outputs are not altered by weather forecasters, it is important to check local forecasts and warnings issued by the Bureau of Meteorology.

Total forecast rainfall (mm) for the period 20 to 27 December 2018

Map of the total forecast rainfall for the next 8 days. Image provided by the Bureau of Meteorology. Please refer to accompanying text for a more detailed description. 

©Commonwealth of Australia 2018, Australian Bureau of Meteorology - Issued: 20/12/2018

Commodities

Current indicators – 20 December 2018

IndicatorWeek endedUnitLatest pricePrice week priorWeekly changePrice 12 months priorYear on year changeChart

Selected world indicator prices

Australian Dollar – AUD/USD Exchange Rate19-DecUS$/A$0.720.720%0.77-6%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Wheat – US no. 2 hard red winter wheat, fob Gulf18-DecUS$/t2472403%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.21913%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Coarse Grains – US no. 2 yellow corn, fob Gulf19-DecUS$/t1701700%15014%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Canola – Rapeseed, Europe, fob Hamburg18-DecUS$/t418419<1%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points.420<1%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Cotton – Cotlook 'A' Index19-DecUSc/lb87.388.3-1%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points.83.85%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Sugar – Intercontinental Exchange, nearby futures, no.11 contract19-DecUSc/lb12.512.8-2%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points.14.0-12%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Wool – Eastern Market Indicator13-DecAc/kg clean1,8621,862<1%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.1,7606%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Wool – Western Market Indicator14-DecAc/kg clean2,0312,0091%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.1,81612%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart

Selected domestic crop indicator prices

Milling Wheat – ASW1, track quote, Port Adelaide, SA18-DecA$/t377374<1%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.23163%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Feed Wheat – General purpose, Sydney, NSW12-DecA$/t440nana25871%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Feed Barley – Sydney, NSW05-DecA$/t4104100%24567%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Canola – Portland, Vic.29-OctA$/t597nana53611%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Grain Sorghum – Sydney, NSW12-DecA$/t4454109%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.30446%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart

Selected domestic livestock indicator prices

Beef – Eastern Young Cattle Indicator13-DecAc/kg cwt5275152%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.571-8%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Mutton – Mutton indicator (18–24 kg fat score 2–3), Vic14-DecAc/kg cwt404424-5%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points.487-17%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Lamb – Eastern States Trade Lamb Indicator13-DecAc/kg cwt6636630%661<1%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Pig – Eastern Seaboard (60.1–75 kg), average of buyers & sellers07-DecAc/kg cwt317 3113%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.28112%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Goat – Eastern States (12.1–16 kg)10-DecAc/kg cwt5725484%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.49216%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Live cattle – Light steers ex Darwin to Indonesia15-DecAc/kg lwt3253250%340-4%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Live sheep – Live wether (Muchea WA saleyard) to Middle East03-Dec$/head108 na na121-11%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart

Global Dairy Trade (GDT) weighted average prices a

Dairy – Whole milk powder18-DecUS$/t2,6742,667<1%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.2,830-6%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Dairy – Skim milk powder18-DecUS$/t2,0421,9704%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.1,77415%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Dairy – Cheddar cheese18-DecUS$/t3,2633,1842%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.3,696-11%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Dairy – Anhydrous milk fat18-DecUS$/t4,9364,7554%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.6,836-28%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart

a Global Dairy Trade prices are updated twice monthly on the first and third Tuesday of each month.

Selected world indicator prices
Selected domestic crop indicator prices
Selected domestic livestock indicator prices
Global dairy trade weighted average prices
Movements in selected fruit and vegetable prices
Data attribution

Water

Water storages, water markets and water allocations - current week

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Last reviewed:
20 Dec 2018