Weekly update - 26 September 2019

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

Key issues

  • During the week ending 25 September 2019 little to no rainfall was recorded across much of Australia, with falls restricted to parts of southern and central Australia.
  • Across cropping regions, rainfall totals of between 10 to 50 millimetres were recorded in part of the far south of Western Australia and much of South Australia. Lighter falls of between 1 and 10 millimetres were recorded across cropping regions in central and eastern New South Wales, Victoria and remaining cropping regions in Western Australia and South Australia.
  • Most climate models indicate that a positive Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD) is expected to remain the dominant driver of climatic conditions in Australia during spring. A positive IOD at this time of year typically brings drier conditions to much of southern and central Australia.
  • A prolonged negative Southern Annular Mode (SAM) event is also forecast to develop in spring. This negative SAM is likely to intensify dry and warm conditions across eastern Australia and bring wetter than average conditions to western Tasmania during spring.
  • The rainfall outlook for October to December 2019 indicates that a drier than average three months is more likely across most of the country.
  • In many areas where soil moisture is average to above average for this time of year, there is still a significant chance of recording rainfall totals sufficient to sustain crop and pasture production through the 2019 spring. However, chances of exceeding median rainfall are low.
  • In areas with low stored soil moisture for this time of year, forecast 3-month rainfall totals are unlikely to be sufficient to sustain current levels of crop and pasture production, particularly as temperatures and evapotranspiration increase through spring.
  • Over the next eight days, frontal and trough activity is expected to result in limited rainfall over parts of eastern and southern Australia.
  • Across Australia’s winter cropping regions, the 8-day rainfall forecast indicates that falls of between 5 and 10 millimetres are expected across parts of southern Queensland. Little to no rainfall is expected across cropping regions in New South Wales, Victoria, Western Australia, South Australia and remaining cropping regions in Queensland.
  • Water storage levels in the Murray-Darling Basin (MDB) increased between 18 September and 25 September 2019 by 5 gigalitres (GL). Current volume of water held in storage is 10,430 GL which represents 41 per cent of total capacity. This is 26 percentage points or 3,750 GL less than at the same time last year.
  • Allocation prices in the Victorian Murray Below the Barmah Choke decreased from $792 per ML on 9 September 2019 to $783 per ML on 16 September 2019. Trade restrictions are currently binding in several catchments, leading to differences in water prices across the Murray Darling Basin.

Climate

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Rainfall this week

During the week ending 25 September 2019 rainfall was restricted to parts of southern and central Australia.   

Across cropping regions, rainfall totals of between 10 to 50 millimetres were recorded in part of the far south of Western Australia and much of South Australia. Lighter falls of between 1 and 10 millimetres were recorded across cropping regions in central and eastern New South Wales, Victoria and remaining cropping regions in Western Australia and South Australia. Little to no rainfall was recorded across cropping regions in Queensland and remaining cropping regions in New South Wales.

Rainfall for the week ending 25 September 2019

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 2019, Australian Bureau of Meteorology - Issued: 25/09/2019

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 24 September  2019, maximum and minimum temperatures were 2°C to 4°C above average across a large area of eastern Australia and isolated areas of northern Australia. In contrast, maximum temperatures were 2°C to 4°C below average across parts of central and western Australia. Average (- 2°C to 2°C) minimum and maximum temperatures were recorded across the remainder of the country.

Maximum temperature anomalies for the week ending 24 September 2019

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 2019, Australian Bureau of Meteorology - Issued: 25/09/2019

Minimum temperature anomalies for the week ending 24 September 2019

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 2019, Australian Bureau of Meteorology - Issued: 25/09/2019

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

The El Niño-Southern Oscillation is currently neutral and expected to remain neutral for the remainder of 2019. A positive Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD) is underway and most climate models suggest it will remain the dominant driver of climatic conditions in Australia until the end of spring. A positive IOD typically brings below average spring rainfall and warmer days to southern and central Australia. A prolonged negative Southern Annular Mode (SAM) event is also forecast to develop in spring due to a predicted sudden stratospheric warming event. This negative SAM is likely to intensify dry and warm conditions across eastern Australia and bring wetter than average conditions to western Tasmania during spring.

The latest rainfall outlook released by the Bureau of Meteorology suggests that a drier than average October is more likely for most of the country. Across parts of northern Western Australia and much of Tasmania, there is no strong shift towards a wetter or drier than average October (Bureau of Meteorology ‘National Climate Outlook’, 19 September 2019).

Chance of exceeding the median rainfall October 2019

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

The Bureau of Meteorology’s climate outlooks are given as a probability (or chance) of exceeding a specified rainfall or temperature threshold. In the case of the Bureau’s rainfall outlook, it is represented as the chance of rainfall being above median, expressed as a percentage. While this probabilistic forecast indicates that the chance of exceeding median rainfall is quite low across large parts of Australia, it does not mean that these areas will receive no rainfall during October to December 2019.

The rainfall outlook for October to December 2019 indicates that a drier than average three months is more likely across most of the country. In contrast, a wetter than average October to December is more likely for the north-west of Western Australia (Bureau of Meteorology ‘National Climate Outlook’, 19 September 2019).

Chance of exceeding the median rainfall October to December 2019

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

In many areas where soil moisture is close to average to above average for this time of year, there is still a significant chance of recording rainfall totals sufficient to sustain crop and pasture production through spring, despite chances of exceeding median rainfall being quite low. In southern Victoria, for example, there is a 75% chance of receiving between 50 and 200 millimetres.

Between October and December 2019, eastern New South Wales, much south-eastern and northern Queensland, and the north of Western Australia and the Northern Territory have a 75% chance of receiving rainfall of between 50 and 200mm. Smaller areas may receive rainfall totals in excess of 200mm.

Prospects are poor for areas with low soil moisture for this time of year. For these regions, the forecast low 3-month rainfall totals are unlikely to be sufficient to sustain current levels of crop and pasture production, particularly as temperatures and evapotranspiration continue to increase as we head into the summer months.

Rainfall totals that have a 75% chance of occurring October to December 2019

Map showing rainfall totals for the next three months that have a 75% chance of occurring in Australia. Image provided by the Bureau of Meteorology. Please refer to accompanying text for a more detailed description. 

©Commonwealth of Australia 2019, Australian Bureau of Meteorology - Issued: 19/09/2019

The temperature outlook for October to December 2019 indicates that daytime temperatures are more likely to be warmer than average for much of the country. Night-time temperatures are also likely to be warmer than average for much of western and a large area of eastern Australia, with cooler than average minimum temperatures forecast for parts of the tropical north and south-eastern Australia. The forecast drier than average conditions and dry soils could bring more cloud-free nights, along with cooler than average night-time temperatures in southern Australia, increases the risk of late-season frost in susceptible areas (Bureau of Meteorology ‘National Climate Outlook’, 19 September 2019).

Chance of exceeding the median maximum temperature October to December 2019

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

Chance of exceeding the median minimum temperature October to December 2019

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

Rainfall forecast for the next 8 days

Over the next eight days, frontal and trough activity is expected to result in limited rainfall over parts of eastern and southern Australia. High-pressure systems are forecast to persist over southern Australia during the next eight days, and are likely to restrict the movement of rain-bearing systems and result in low rainfall forecast for much of mainland Australia.

Rainfall totals of between 1 and 10 millimetres is forecast for parts of eastern New South Wales, southern Victoria, south-eastern Queensland, southern Western Australia, the far south-east and south-west of South Australia and eastern Tasmania. Higher rainfall totals up to 50 millimetres are forecast for western Tasmania.

In cropping regions, rainfall of between 5 and 10 millimetres is expected across parts of southern Queensland. Little to no rainfall is expected across cropping regions in New South Wales, Victoria, Western Australia, South Australia and remaining cropping regions in Queensland.

Total forecast rainfall (mm) for the period 26 September to 3 October 2019

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 2019, Australian Bureau of Meteorology - Issued: 26/09/2019

Note: 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.

Commodities

Current indicators – 26 September 2019

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-Sep US$/A$ 0.68 0.69 -1%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. 0.73 -7%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 Gulf 17-Sep US$/t 203 199 2%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. 238 -15%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Coarse Grains – US no. 2 yellow corn, fob Gulf 25-Sep US$/t 160 159 <1%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. 154 4%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Canola – Rapeseed, Europe, fob Hamburg 24-Sep US$/t 426 429 <1%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. 434 -2%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Cotton – Cotlook 'A' Index 25-Sep USc/lb 71.5 72.8 -2%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. 88.5 -19%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Sugar – Intercontinental Exchange, nearby futures, no.11 contract 25-Sep USc/lb 11.2 10.6 6%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. 10.5 7%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Wool – Eastern Market Indicator 19-Sep Ac/kg clean 1,542 1,535 <1%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. 2,067 -25%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Wool – Western Market Indicator 20-Sep Ac/kg clean 1,643 1,625 1%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. 2,222 -26%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart

Selected domestic crop indicator prices

Milling Wheat – ASW1, track quote, Port Adelaide, SA 24-Sep A$/t 315 300 5%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. 365 -14%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Feed Wheat – General purpose, Sydney, NSW 25-Sep A$/t 375 375 0% 430 -13%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Feed Barley – Sydney, NSW 02-Oct A$/t 380 360 6%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. 410 -7%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Grain Sorghum – Sydney, NSW 25-Sep A$/t 345 345 0% 410 -16%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart

Selected domestic livestock indicator prices

Beef – Eastern Young Cattle Indicator 19-Sep Ac/kg cwt 469 477 -2%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. 501 -6%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-Sep Ac/kg cwt 531 558 -5%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. 484 10%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Lamb – Eastern States Trade Lamb Indicator 19-Sep Ac/kg cwt 804 811 <1%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. 773 4%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 & sellers 13-Sep Ac/kg cwt 384 389 -1%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. 250 54%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) 23-Sep Ac/kg cwt 880 880 0% 540 63%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 Indonesia 14-Sep Ac/kg lwt 315 315 0% 300 5%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Live sheep – Live wether (Muchea WA saleyard) to Middle East 16-Sep $/head 99 99 0% na 0% chart

Global Dairy Trade (GDT) weighted average prices a

Dairy – Whole milk powder 17-Sep US$/t 3,133 3,076 2%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. 2,768 13%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Dairy – Skim milk powder 17-Sep US$/t 2,599 2,500 4%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. 1,980 31%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Dairy – Cheddar cheese 17-Sep US$/t 3,846 3,827 <1%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. 3,503 10%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Dairy – Anhydrous milk fat 17-Sep US$/t 5,030 4,988 <1%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. 5,296 -5%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: 13 January 2021
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