Weekly update - 26 April 2018

Weekly Australian Climate,
Water and Agricultural Update

Key issues

  • During the week ending 25 April 2018 rainfall was mainly restricted to eastern Australia and isolated parts of northern, and south-western Australia.
  • Maximum temperatures were between 2°C to 6°C above average across most of the country for the week ending 24 April 2018. Higher anomalies (6°C to 8°C) were recorded in South Australia and western parts of New South Wales and Victoria.
  • According to the latest National Climate Outlook released by the Bureau of Meteorology, a drier than average May is more likely for parts of Western Australia and isolated areas in the Northern Territory, central Queensland, and north-eastern New South Wales.
  • The rainfall outlook for May to July indicates an increased chance of exceeding the median across parts of northern Australia, and isolated parts of south-eastern Australia. Rainfall is more likely to be below the median in western parts of Western Australia and western Victoria. For the rest of Australia there is no strong tendency towards either wetter or drier than average conditions.
  • The Bureau of Meteorology report that the El Niño-Southern Oscillation is expected to remain neutral through winter. Climate model outlooks have lower accuracy during autumn than at other times of the year.
  • During the next eight days, little to no rainfall is expected across most of the country.
  • Water storage levels in the Murray–Darling Basin (MDB) decreased during the week ending 26 April 2018 by 148 gigalitres (GL) to 11,123 GL and are at 49 per cent of total capacity. This is 17 percentage points or 3,941 GL less than at the same time last year.
  • Allocation prices in the southern Murray–Darling Basin increased in the week ending 26 April 2018 to $139 per ML. This is an increase of $5 from the same time last week.

Climate

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Rainfall this week

During the week ending 25 April 2018 rainfall was mainly restricted to eastern Australia and isolated parts of northern, and south-western Australia. Little to no rainfall was received across the remainder of the country. Rainfall totals up to 50 millimetres were recorded across the Top End in the Northern Territory, and parts of south-eastern Queensland. Similar totals were recorded in north-eastern New South Wales and south-western Western Australia. The highest recorded weekly total was 128 millimetres at Evans Head, south of Lismore in northern New South Wales.

Rainfall - week ending 25 April 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: 25/04/2018

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

Temperatures continued to be warmer than average during the week ending 24 April 2018. Maximum temperatures were between 2°C to 6°C above average across most of the country, with higher anomalies (6°C to 8°C) in South Australia and western parts of New South Wales and Victoria. Minimum temperatures were 2°C to 6°C above average in South Australia and adjacent parts of Western Australia, Queensland and the Northern Territory. They were close to average for the remainder of the country.

Maximum temperature anomalies - week ending 24 April 2018

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 2018, Australian Bureau of Meteorology - Issued: 24/04/2018

Minimum temperature anomalies - week ending 24 April 2018

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 2018, Australian Bureau of Meteorology - Issued: 24/04/2018

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 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 current outlook reflects the neutral state of major climate drivers, with no strong shift towards wetter or drier conditions across most of Australia. Above average sea surface temperatures in the Tasman Sea, associated with lower pressures over eastern Australia, may be increasing the chance of easterly winds bringing above average rainfall in the far southeast of the country. Likewise, this pattern may also reduce the strength of the westerly winds that would typically bring moisture into other parts of southern Australia.

A drier than average May is more likely for parts of Western Australia and isolated areas in the Northern Territory, central Queensland, and north-eastern New South Wales. Parts of far northern Queensland and the Northern Territory have higher chances of exceeding the median rainfall. Elsewhere, there are roughly equal chances of above or below average rainfall during May (Bureau of Meteorology ‘National Climate Outlook’, 26 April 2018).

Chance of exceeding the median rainfall May 2018

 

The rainfall outlook for May to July indicates an increased chance of exceeding the median across parts of northern Australia, and isolated parts of south-eastern Australia. Rainfall is more likely to be below the median in western parts of Western Australia and western Victoria. For the rest of Australia there is no strong tendency towards either wetter or drier than average conditions (Bureau of Meteorology ‘National Climate Outlook’, 26 April 2018).

Chance of exceeding the median rainfall May to July 2018

 

The maximum temperature outlook for May to July 2018 indicates no strong signal toward either above or below temperatures for most of Australia. Maximum temperatures are more likely to be above average in Victoria, south-eastern New South Wales, south-western and far northern Western Australia, and Tasmania. Minimum temperatures are more likely to be below average in Queensland, and above average in New South Wales, South Australia, Victoria, Tasmania, and northern and southern parts of Western Australia (Bureau of Meteorology ‘National Climate Outlook’, 26 April 2018).

Chance of exceeding the median maximum temperature May to July 2018

 

Chance of exceeding the median minimum temperature May to July 2018

 

Rainfall forecast for the next 8 days

During the next eight days, little to no rainfall is expected across most of the country. Totals between 10 and 50 millimetres are forecast for isolated areas of the Northern Territory, coastal parts of Queensland and New South Wales, alpine areas of eastern Victoria, and south-western Tasmania.

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 26 April to 3 May 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: 26/04/2018

El Niño–Southern Oscillation Update

The Bureau of Meteorology report that the El Niño–Southern Oscillation (ENSO) remains neutral, with most oceanic and atmospheric indicators at neutral levels. Climate models indicate that sea surface temperatures in the tropical Pacific will rise, but are likely to remain within neutral ENSO boundaries for the remainder of autumn and into winter. By September, two of the eight models suggest ocean temperatures may approach El Niño thresholds.

The Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD) is currently neutral. Most models indicate a neutral IOD is likely for autumn and early winter. However, three of six models indicate a negative IOD is possible during winter. Typically, winter–spring rainfall is above average over southern Australia during negative IOD events.

Climate model accuracy for ENSO and IOD is lower during autumn than at other times of the year and current model outlooks should be viewed with some caution (Bureau of Meteorology, ‘ENSO Wrap-Up’, 24 April 2018).

Water

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Water availability

Water storage levels in the Murray–Darling Basin (MDB) decreased during the week ending 26 April 2018 by 148 gigalitres (GL) to 11,123 GL and are at 49 per cent of total capacity. This is 17 percentage points or 3,941 GL less than at the same time last year.

Visit the interactive Tableau data dashboard

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 2001 to 2018, 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 26 April 2018 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

The current water allocations for the 2017–18 water trading season for licence holders in New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia water systems are summarised in the following table and charts.

Water allocations in the Murray–Darling Basin (NSW, Victoria and South Australia)

Allocations at

26 April 2018

 

16 April 2018

 

New South Wales

General security

High security

General security

High security

NSW Murray

51%

97%

51%

97%

NSW Murrumbidgee

41%

95%

41%

95%

NSW Lower Darling

100%

100%

100%

100%

NSW Macquarie and Cudgegong

38%

100%

38%

100%

NSW Hunter

100%

100%

100%

100%

NSW Lachlan

2%

100%

2%

100%

NSW Lower Namoi

7%

100%

7%

100%

NSW Upper Namoi

100%

100%

100%

100%

NSW Gwydir

18%

100%

18%

100%

NSW Border Rivers

100%(a)/19.62%(b)

100%

100%(a)/19.62%(b)

100%

NSW Peel

100%

100%

100%

100%

Victoria

Low reliability

High reliability

Low reliability

High reliability

Victoria Murray

0%

100%

0%

100%

Victoria Goulburn

0%

100%

0%

100%

Victoria Campaspe

59%

100%

59%

100%

Victoria Loddon

0%

100%

0%

100%

Victoria Bullarook

100%

100%

100%

100%

Victoria Broken

100%

100%

100%

100%

South Australia

 

Class 3a/3b

 

Class 3a/3b

South Australia Murray

 

100%

 

100%

Select water allocation percentages in the southern Murray-Darling Basin

 

 

 

 

Water markets

Allocation prices in the southern Murray–Darling Basin increased in the week ending 26 April 2018 to $139 per ML. This is an increase of $5 from the same time last week. This contrasts with an average price of $117 in March across the whole southern MDB, and $42 during the same month last year.

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 26 April 2018. 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:
20/04/18 – 26/04/18

$139.09

$136.13

$138.40

$159.19

$141.77

$135.01

Last week:
13/04/18 – 19/04/18

$134.25

$125.02

$136.81

$158.69

$136.71

$129.87

March 2018

$116.99

$101.21

$106.54

$150.82

$122.37

$115.02

March 2017

$41.53

$44.63

$44.80

$17.66

$45.96

$41.03

Commodities

Current indicators – 26 April 2018

Indicator Week ended Unit Latest price Price week prior Weekly change Price 12 months prior Year on year change Chart

Selected world indicator prices

Australian Dollar – AUD/USD Exchange Rate 25-Apr US$/A$ 0.77 0.77 -1%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. 0.75 3%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 Gulf 24-Apr US$/t 238 245 <1%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. 186 28%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Coarse Grains – US no. 2 yellow corn, fob Gulf 25-Apr US$/t 175 176 -2%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. 156 12%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Canola – Rapeseed, Europe, fob Hamburga 24-Apr US$/t 410 427 -3%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. 441 -7%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Cotton – Cotlook 'A' Index 25-Apr USc/lb 92.3 91.7 <1%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. 88.4 4%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 contract 25-Apr USc/lb 11.3 12.3 -5%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. 16.1 -30%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Wool – Eastern Market Indicator 19-Apr Ac/kg clean 1,825 1,772 3%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. 1,512 30%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Wool – Western Market Indicator 20-Apr Ac/kg clean 1,884 1,934 3%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. 1,532 26%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, SA 24-Apr A$/t 244 242 <1%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. 185 32%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Feed Wheat – General purpose, Sydney, NSW 11-Apr A$/t 280 278 <1%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. 211 33%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Feed Barley – Sydney, NSW 11-Apr A$/t 284 279 2%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. 193 47%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Canola – Portland, Vic. 23-Apr A$/t 510 502 2%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. 510 0% chart
Grain Sorghum – Sydney, NSW 11-Apr A$/t 360 350 3%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. 249 45%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 Indicator 19-Apr Ac/kg cwt 496 523 -5%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. 651 -24%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), Vic 20-Apr Ac/kg cwt 448 438 2%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. 517 -13%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Lamb – Eastern States Trade Lamb Indicator 19-Apr Ac/kg cwt 571 580 -2%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. 667 -14%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Pig – Eastern Seaboard (60.1-75 kg), average of buyers & sellers 06-Apr Ac/kg cwt 269 269 0% 318 -15%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) 16-Apr Ac/kg cwt 468 472 <1%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. 653 -28%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 Indonesia 14-Apr Ac/kg lwt 285 310 -8%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. 340 -16%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 East 16-Apr $/head 119 124 -4%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. 128 -7%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart

Global Dairy Trade weighted average pricesa

Dairy – Whole milk powder 17-Apr US$/t 3,311 3,278 1%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. 2,998 10%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Dairy – Skim milk powder 17-Apr US$/t 1,913 1,849 3%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. 2,044 -6%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Dairy – Cheddar cheese 17-Apr US$/t 3,855 3,679 5%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. 3,462 11%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Dairy – Anhydrous milk fat 17-Apr US$/t 6,120 5,806 5%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. 5,930 3%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

Last reviewed: 13 January 2021
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