Weekly update - 31 August 2017

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

Key issues

  • During the week ending 30 August 2017 a series of weak cold fronts brought rainfall totals between 5 and 50 millimetres to south-central Western Australia, southern Victoria, and parts of New South Wales and South Australia. Rainfall totals exceeded 50 millimetres in western Tasmania.
  • For the week ending 29 August 2017 maximum temperatures were between 2°C and 8°C above average for most of Western Australia. Over the remainder of the country, maximum temperatures were generally close to average. Minimum temperatures were above average (2°C to 10°C) in Western Australia, and below average (-2°C to -6°C) in parts of south-eastern and northern Australia.
  • The rainfall outlook for September to November 2017 indicates that rainfall is more likely to be below average for parts of Western Australia and above average in south-eastern Australia. The remainder of the country has roughly equal chances of above or below average rainfall during this period.
  • During the next eight days rainfall is expected to be restricted to southern and western parts of the country. Totals between 5 and 50 millimetres are forecast for parts of Western Australia, southern South Australia, most of Victoria and Tasmania, and parts of southern New South Wales.
  • Water storage levels in the Murray-Darling Basin (MDB) increased during the week ending 31 August 2017 by 105 gigalitres (GL) to 16,611 GL and are at 74 per cent of total capacity. This is 4 percentage points or 903 GL more than at the same time last year.
  • Allocation prices across markets of the southern Murray-Darling Basin were mixed in the week up to 31 August 2017. Average prices across the whole southern system increased slightly to $129/ML. This is an increase of $1 from the same time last week. This contrasts with an average price of $124 in July across the whole southern MDB.

Climate

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Rainfall this week

During the week ending 30 August 2017 a series of weak cold fronts brought rainfall totals between 5 and 50 millimetres to south-central Western Australia, southern Victoria, and parts of New South Wales and South Australia. Rainfall totals exceeded 50 millimetres in western Tasmania, where the highest recorded weekly total was 138 millimetres at Mount Read. Little to no rainfall was recorded in northern Western Australia, the Northern Territory, Queensland, and most of South Australia and New South Wales.

Rainfall - week ending 30 August 2017

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 2017, Australian Bureau of Meteorology - Issued: 30/08/2017

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

During the week ending 29 August 2017 maximum temperatures were between 2°C and 8°C above average for most of Western Australia. Over the remainder of the country, maximum temperatures were generally close to average. Minimum temperatures were above average (2°C to 10°C) in Western Australia, and below average (-2°C to -6°C) in parts of south-eastern and northern Australia.

Maximum temperature anomalies - week ending 29 August 2017

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

©Commonwealth of Australia 2017, Australian Bureau of Meteorology - Issued: 29/08/2017

Minimum temperature anomalies - week ending 29 August 2017

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

©Commonwealth of Australia 2017, Australian Bureau of Meteorology - Issued: 29/08/2017

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 their long-term averages. Temperature anomalies are calculated using high-resolution gridded datasets from 1911 onwards. For further information go to Daily maximum temperature for Australia.

National Climate Outlook

The rainfall and temperature outlooks presented below 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. Climate outlooks are generated by the Predictive Climate Ocean Atmosphere Model for Australia (POAMA), a dynamical (physics-based) climate model developed by the Bureau of Meteorology and CSIRO Marine and Atmospheric research division.

For further information, go to About the climate outlooks.

The El Niño–Southern Oscillation (ENSO) remains neutral. International climate models surveyed by the Bureau suggest the tropical Pacific Ocean is likely to persist at ENSO-neutral levels until at least late 2017.

Sea surface temperatures (SSTs) have cooled over much of the central tropical Pacific during the past several weeks, yet have remained within the neutral range. Other indicators of ENSO, such as the Southern Oscillation Index (SOI), cloudiness near the Date Line and trade winds are also at neutral levels.

The Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD) is neutral, though index values have generally been above zero for the past several months. Most climate models suggest a neutral IOD is likely to continue. However, two of the six climate models surveyed suggest a positive IOD may develop during spring.

Rainfall during September 2017 is more likely to be below average in isolated parts of northern and western Australia and above average in southern Australia. The remainder of mainland Australia has roughly equal chances of a wetter or drier than average September (Bureau of Meteorology ‘National Climate Outlook’, 31 August 2017).

Chance of exceeding the median rainfall September 2017

Map showing chance of exceeding the median rainfall. Image provided by the Bureau of Meteorology. Please refer to accompanying text for a more detailed description. 

The rainfall outlook for spring (September to November 2017) indicates that rainfall is more likely to be below average in parts of Western Australia and above average in south-eastern Australia. The remainder of the country has roughly equal chances of above or below average rainfall during this period (Bureau of Meteorology ‘National Climate Outlook’, 31 August 2017).

Chance of exceeding the median rainfall September to November 2017

Map showing chance of exceeding the median rainfall. Image provided by the Bureau of Meteorology. Please refer to accompanying text for a more detailed description. 

The temperature outlook for spring (September to November 2017) indicates that maximum temperatures are more likely to be above average for northern Australia and south-eastern Australia, where there is a greater than 80 per cent chance of exceeding the median maximum temperature. The remainder of the country has roughly equal chances of above or below average maximum temperatures during this period.

Minimum temperatures are more likely to be above average for much of northern and eastern Australia. The remainder of the country has roughly equal chances of above or below average minimum temperatures during this period. (Bureau of Meteorology ‘National Climate Outlook’, 31 August 2017).

Chance of exceeding the median maximum temperature September to November 2017

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

Chance of exceeding the median minimum temperature September to November 2017

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

Rainfall forecast for the next 8 days

Rainfall is expected to be restricted to southern and western parts of the country during the next eight days. Totals between 5 and 50 millimetres are forecast for parts of Western Australia, southern South Australia, most of Victoria and Tasmania, and parts of southern New South Wales. Rainfall totals are forecast to exceed 50 millimetres in western Tasmania, and in alpine regions of Victoria and New South Wales.

This rainfall forecast is produced from computer models. As it contains no input from weather forecasters, it is important to check local forecasts and warnings issued by the Bureau of Meteorology.

Total forecast rainfall (mm) for the period 31 August to 7 September 2017

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. 

Source: ©Commonwealth of Australia 2017, Australian Bureau of Meteorology - Issued: 31/08/2017

Water

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Water availability

Water storage levels in the Murray–Darling Basin (MDB) increased during the week ending 31 August 2017 by 105 gigalitres (GL) to 16,611 GL and are at 74 per cent of total capacity. This is 4 percentage points or 903 GL more than at the same time last year.

Water storages in the Murray-Darling Basin (NSW, Victoria and Queensland)

Line graph showing water storages in the Murray–Darling Basin (NSW, Victoria and Queensland) from 2000 to 2017, measured as a percentage of the total storage of 22,598 gigalitres. 

Information on water available in dams used for irrigation the Murray–Darling Basin from 1 January 2001 to 31 August 2017 is shown above. The top horizontal (short dash) line indicates the storage level during a similar time last year. The bottom horizontal (long dash) line indicates the amount of ‘dead’ or unusable storage.

Water allocations

Water allocations remained constant in the week to 31 August 2017. Allocation updates are expected on 1 September in Victoria and New South Wales.

Select water allocations in the southern Murray–Darling Basin

Announced  allocations (determinations) are shown for four of the major entitlement types in the southern Murray-Darling Basin: New South Wales Murray general security, New South Wales Murrumbidgee general security, Victorian Murray high reliability and Victorian Goulburn high reliability. As well as averages and the progression of the current water-year, a number of other years are shown and represent the range of allocation percentages as they progress through the year. 

Water markets

Allocation prices across markets of the southern Murray–Darling Basin were mixed in the week up to 31 August 2017. Average prices across the whole southern system increased slightly to $129/ML. This is an increase of $1 from the same time last week. This contrasts with an average price of $124 in July across the whole southern MDB.

Allocation trade activity in the southern Murray–Darling Basin

Allocation trade activity in the southern Murray-Darling Basin. The trades shown reflect market activity and do not encompass all register trades. The price line reflects locally fitted price values for the entire southern Murray-Darling Basin. 

The trades shown reflect estimated market activity and do not encompass all register trades. The price line reflects locally fitted price values for the entire southern Murray–Darling Basin. Data shown is current until Thursday 31 August 2017. Trade activity is shown as colour density.

Allocation trade prices, southern Murray–Darling Basin trade zones

 

Southern MDB

Victoria Goulburn

SA Murray

NSW Murrumbidgee

Victoria Murray

NSW Murray

Current week: 25/08/17 - 31/08/17

$129..01

$106.88

$162.57

$148.15

$135.36

$124.97

Last week: 18/08/17 - 24/08/17

$127.98

$123.14

$140.00

$127.75

$137.62

$128.60

July 2017

$124.67

$111.64

$191.30

$107.76

$118.65

$117.80

July 2016

$157.33

$229.63

$240.60

$115.56

$181.01

$208.58

Commodities

Current indicators – 31 August 2017

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

Selected world indicator prices

Australian Dollar – AUD/USD Exchange Rate30-AugUS$/A$0.790.790%0.764%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Wheat – US no. 2 hard red winter wheat, fob Gulf29-AugUS$/t196198-1%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points.1837%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 Gulf30-AugUS$/t143151-5%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points.145-1%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Canola – Rapeseed, Europe, fob Hamburg29-AugUS$/t4394331%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.4224%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Cotton – Cotlook 'A' Index30-AugUSc/lb79.877.73%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.76.64%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 contract30-AugUSc/lb14.013.54%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.20.5-32%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Wool – Eastern Market Indicatora13-JulAc/kg clean1,5221,524<1%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points.1,31116%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Wool – Western Market Indicatora18-AugAc/kg clean1,6801,6065%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.1,39720%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, SA22-AugA$/t210223-6%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points.220-5%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Feed Wheat – General purpose, Sydney, NSW30-AugA$/t232237-2%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points.231<1%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Feed Barley – Sydney, NSW30-AugA$/t221226-2%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points.18321%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Canola – Portland, Vic.28-AugA$/t5074952%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.4952%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Grain Sorghum – Sydney, NSW30-AugA$/t299314-5%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points.20645%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 Indicator24-AugAc/kg cwt5755514%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.720-20%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), Vic25-AugAc/kg cwt389401-15%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points.395-14%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Lamb – Eastern States Trade Lamb Indicator24-AugAc/kg cwt6185944%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.5797%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 & sellers11-AugAc/kg cwt276274<1%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.377-27%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Goat – Eastern States (12.1-16 kg)28-AugAc/kg cwt4574570%577-21%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Live cattle – Light steers ex Darwin to Indonesia26-AugAc/kg lwt3303203%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.360-8%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 East14-Aug$/head112140-20%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points.9320%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart

Global Dairy Trade weighted average pricesa

Dairy – Whole milk powder15-AugUS$/t3,1433,155<1%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points.2,69517%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Dairy – Skim milk powder15-AugUS$/t1,9681,966<1%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.2,028-3%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Dairy – Cheddar cheese15-AugUS$/t4,0053,9322%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.3,15727%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Dairy – Anhydrous milk fat15-AugUS$/t6,1996,289-1%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points.4,14849%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart

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

Movements in selected fruit and vegetable prices
Data attribution

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Last reviewed:
31 Aug 2017