Weekly update - 16 July 2020

Weekly Australian Climate,
Water and Agricultural Update

Key issues

  • During the week ending 15 July 2020, substantial but patchy rainfall was recorded across eastern Australia, likely supporting ongoing pasture and crop growth in New South Wales and eastern Victoria. Additionally, they will likely provide a boost to south-western Queensland and western South Australia which had generally low June rainfall totals.
  • Short-term rainfall deficiencies have increased across south-western Australia following below average June rainfall.
  • As of the end of June 2020, rainfall was generally favourable for the world’s major grain- and oilseed-producing regions.
  • Global crop production conditions are largely favourable, with the exception of mixed conditions across parts of the European Union, the United Kingdom, Turkey, Ukraine, Brazil, Argentina and south-west of the Russian Federation due to previous dryness.
  • The global climate outlook indicates that average to above average rainfall is more likely between August and October 2020 for most of the world's major grain- and oilseed-producing regions. If realised, this is likely to benefit corn, soybeans, sunflower, millet, rice, sorghum, groundnuts and cotton production in the northern hemisphere, and winter wheat and canola (rapeseed) production in Australia.
  • Over the next eight days, a cold front is expected to bring rainfall to the south-west of Western Australia. Across cropping regions, rainfall of between 10 and 50 millimetres is expected in Western Australia.
  • Water storage levels in the Murray-Darling Basin (MDB) increased between 8 July 2020 and 15 July 2020 by 177 gigalitres (GL). The current volume of water held in storage is 11,265 GL which represents 45 per cent of total capacity.
  • Allocation prices in the Victorian Murray below the Barmah choke increased from $345 per ML on 9 July 2020 to $350 per ML on 16 July 2020. Prices are lower in the Goulburn-Broken, Murrumbidgee, and regions above the Barmah Choke, due to binding Goulburn intervalley trade and Murrumbidgee export limits, and the Barmah Choke trade constraint.

Climate

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Rainfall this week

During the week ending 15 July 2020, a complex low-pressure system moved over south-eastern Australia with several cold fronts and troughs, bringing variable rainfall, thunderstorms and severe weather to this region. Rainfall totals of between 10 and 50 millimetres were recorded across parts of south-eastern Australia and far south-western Western Australia. Rainfall in excess of 50 millimetres was recorded across isolated parts of eastern New South Wales and eastern Victoria.

In Australia’s cropping regions, rainfall totals of between 10 and 50 millimetres were recorded across much of New South Wales and parts of southern Queensland, eastern Victoria, western South Australia and isolated parts of the south and west of Western Australia. Rainfall in excess of 50 millimetres was recorded across a small area of cropping regions in central New South Wales. Rainfall totals of between 1 and 10 millimetres were recorded across most remaining cropping regions during the week ending 15 July 2020.

These falls will likely support continued crop and pasture growth across much of eastern and central New South Wales and eastern Victoria. Additionally, they will provide some needed moisture to cropping regions in south-western Queensland and western South Australia, that had below average June rainfall.

Rainfall for the week ending 15 July 2020

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 2020, Australian Bureau of Meteorology - Issued: 15/07/2020

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 http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/rainfall/

Rainfall deficiencies

The rainfall deficiencies presented below are sourced from the Bureau of Meteorology’s monthly ‘Drought Statement’. As short to longer-term deficiencies become evident the Bureau of Meteorology monitors these events through their lifecycle – from emergence through to their dissipation – with the time-period of analysis each month increasing from a fixed starting point to the easing of the deficiencies.

Rainfall deficiencies are monitored to help determine whether rainfall conditions have been favourable or unfavourable for agricultural production. If below-average rainfall continues over months and years, water storages are depleted. Dam and reservoir levels drop, river levels lower (some may dry up completely), groundwater levels fall and the soil dries.

Rainfall deficiencies also give an early indication if we are entering a period of drought, but are not always the best indicator that a drought has finished and more normal production conditions have commenced.

For further information, go to http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/drought

Below average rainfall during June 2020 has increased short term deficiencies across south-western Australia. This June was Australia’s third-warmest on record for mean maximum temperature and third-driest on record, however large parts of northern and eastern Australia received average rainfall.

Rainfall deficiencies for the 3-month period 1 April 2020 to 30 June 2020

20200707.drought1.png

©Commonwealth of Australia 2020, Australian Bureau of Meteorology - Issued: 07/07/2020

Global production conditions and climate outlook

Crop production is affected by long-term trends in average rainfall and temperature, interannual climate variability, shocks during specific phenological stages, and extreme weather events (IPCC 2012). Some crops are more tolerant than others to certain types of stresses, and at each phenological stage, different types of stresses affect each crop species in different ways.

The precipitation anomalies and outlooks presented here give an indication of the current and future state of production conditions for the major grain and oilseed producing countries which are responsible for over 80% of global production. This is an important input to assessing the global grain supply outlook. The June rainfall percentiles and current production conditions data presented here show no significant departure from global conditions seen during May, which were used to formulate ABARES forecasts of global grain supplies and the impact on world prices in its June 2020 edition of Agricultural commodities.

June rainfall percentiles and current production conditions

As of the end of June 2020, rainfall was generally favourable for the world’s major grain and oil producing regions.

In the Northern Hemisphere, June rainfall was above average in parts of the United Kingdom (UK), western Europe, the north-west of the United States (US), northern Canada, central Russia, southern China and central India. Rainfall was generally average across the remainder of major grain and oil producing regions in the Northern Hemisphere.

In the Southern Hemisphere, June rainfall was generally average in Brazil and below average in parts of Australia and much of Argentina. 

Global precipitation percentiles, June 2020

global_precipitation_percentiles_june2020.png

Note: The world precipitation percentiles indicate a ranking of precipitation for June, with the driest (0th percentile) being 0 on the scale and the wettest (100th percentile) being 1 on the scale. Percentiles are based on precipitation estimates from the NOAA Climate Prediction Center's Climate Anomaly Monitoring System Outgoing Precipitation Index dataset. Precipitation estimates for June 2020 are compared with rainfall recorded for that period during the 1981 to 2010 base period.
Source: International Research Institute for Climate and Society

As at 28 June 2020 global production conditions are generally favourable.

In the southern hemisphere, conditions for wheat crop development are generally favourable for Australia and mixed for Argentina. In the northern hemisphere, conditions are mixed for wheat crop development in the European Union, the United Kingdom and Turkey, and generally favourable for Ukraine. Conditions are generally favourable for winter wheat harvesting and spring wheat in Kazakhstan, China, Canada and the United States. Conditions are generally favourable in the Russian Federation for spring wheat and winter wheat harvest with the exception of southern regions, where winter wheat yields have been affected by drought conditions.

Growing conditions for maize are generally favourable for harvest in Argentina and harvest and sowing in Mexico. Harvest in Brazil is starting under exceptional conditions, with the exception of the south where dry conditions impacted crop development. Conditions are generally favourable for the United States, Canada, the European Union, Ukraine, the Russian Federation and China.

Conditions are generally favourable for rice harvesting and sowing in China, Thailand and the Philippines, with mixed conditions in Indonesia and Vietnam due to dry conditions. Rice transplanting in India is beginning under favourable conditions. Conditions are favourable for rice development in the United States.

Growing conditions for soybeans are generally favourable as harvest wraps up in Argentina, with the exception of San Luis and Entre Ríos as dry conditions have impacted crop development. Conditions are generally favourable for the United States, Canada and China and Ukraine.

Crop conditions, AMIS countries, 28 June 2020

crop_monitor_20200628.png

AMIS Agricultural Market Information System.
Source: AMIS

Rainfall outlook and potential impact on future the state of production conditions between August and October
Region August-October rainfall outlook Potential impact on production
Canada Above average rainfall is more likely for parts of eastern and southern Canada between August and October 2020. Average to above average rainfall is likely to benefit corn, soybeans and sunflower flowering in August and support grain development through September and October.
United States Above average rainfall is more likely for much of eastern US and below average is rainfall more likely in parts of central-west US. Average to above average rainfall is likely to benefit soybeans, sunflower and millet flowering in August and the development of these crops as well as rice, corn, sorghum and groundnuts leading up to harvest in October. 
Brazil Below average rainfall is more likely in parts of the north and south of Brazil. Below average rainfall in southern Brazil is likely to adversely affect wheat heading and filling in August and September leading up to harvest in October, as well as corn and soybean planting and development in September and October.
Argentina Below average rainfall is more likely in parts of central and southern Argentina between August and October 2020. Below average rainfall is likely to adversely affect the heading and filling of wheat and planting of corn, cotton and soybeans through September and October.
Europe Below average rainfall more likely for parts of western and southern Europe between August and October 2020. Below average rainfall may adversely impact the yield prospects of corn, cotton and sorghum in southern Europe. Below average rainfall may also impact winter wheat and rapeseed planting in parts of southern and western Europe during October.
South Asia (India) Above average rainfall between August and October 2020 is likely across much of India, with the exception of parts of the central-north where below average rainfall is likely. Above average rainfall is likely to benefit corn, sorghum, rice, millet, groundnuts and sunflower flowering and filling in August and September leading up to harvest in October, and cotton blooming in the south in September.
Southeast Asia (SEA) Above average rainfall is likely for parts of northern SEA, with a strong likelihood of above average rainfall for Indonesia between August and October 2020. Above average rainfall between August and October 2020 is likely to support corn and rice filling and maturing in SEA leading up to harvest in October.
Black Sea Region Kazakhstan and Ukraine - No strong tendency towards either above or below average rainfall between August and October 2020.
Russia - Below average rainfall more likely for parts of the north-east between August and October 2020.
Average rainfall between August and October 2020 is likely to support spring wheat filling and harvesting in the north. In the south, average rainfall is likely to support cotton, corn and sunflower development and winter wheat and rapeseed harvesting and planting.
China Above average rainfall likely across parts of western and south-eastern China between August and October 2020. Average to above average rainfall is likely to support the development and harvest of cotton, rice, corn, sorghum, soybean, sunflower, groundnuts and spring wheat. Additionally, average to above average rainfall is likely to support late rice heading in September and planting of winter wheat and rapeseed in October.

Rainfall forecast for the next 8 days

A cold front moving over the south-west of Western Australia is expected to bring rainfall during the next eight days. Rainfall totals of between 10 and 50 millimetres are forecast for much of the south-west of Western Australia and parts of the far eastern coast of Queensland and western Tasmania.

In cropping regions, rainfall of between 10 and 50 millimetres is expected across Western Australia. Little to no rainfall is expected across cropping regions in New South Wales, Queensland, Victoria and South Australia during the next eight days.

Total forecast rainfall (mm) for the period 16 July 2020 to 23 July 2020

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 2020, Australian Bureau of Meteorology - Issued: 16/07/2020

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 – 16 July 2020

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

Selected World Indicator Prices

AUD/USD Exchange rate 15-Jul US$/A$ 0.69 0.67 3% 0.70 -1% chart
Wheat – US no. 2 hard red winter wheat, fob Gulf 15-Jul US$/t 224 221 1% 214 5% chart
Coarse Grains – US no. 2 yellow corn, fob Gulf 15-Jul US$/t 149 157 -5% 188 -20% chart
Canola – Rapeseed, Canada, fob Vancouver 15-Jul US$/t 364 366 -1% 365 0% chart
Cotton – Cotlook 'A' Index 15-Jul USc/lb 70 70 -1% 75 -7% chart
Sugar – Intercontinental Exchange, nearby futures, no.11 contract 15-Jul USc/lb 12 12 -4% 12 0% chart
Wool – Eastern Market Indicator 08-Jul Ac/kg clean 1,134 1,116 2% 1,887 -40% chart
Wool – Western Market Indicator 08-Jul Ac/kg clean 1,202 1,185 1% 2,095 -43% chart

Selected Australian grain export prices

Milling Wheat – APW, Port Adelaide, SA 15-Jul A$/t 331 332 0% 346 -4% chart
Feed Wheat – ASW, Port Adelaide, SA 15-Jul A$/t 315 316 0% 346 -9% chart
Feed Barley – Port Adelaide, SA 15-Jul A$/t 274 283 -3% 346 -21% chart
Canola – Kwinana, WA 15-Jul A$/t 630 659 -4% 596 6% chart
Grain Sorghum – Brisbane, QLD 15-Jul A$/t 369 384 -4% 377 -2% chart

Selected domestic livestock indicator prices

Beef – Eastern Young Cattle Indicator 15-Jul Ac/kg cwt 747 759 -2% 464 61% chart
Mutton – Mutton indicator (18–24 kg fat score 2–3), Vic 01-Jul Ac/kg cwt 600 631 -5% 464 29% chart
Lamb – Eastern States Trade Lamb Indicator 01-Jul Ac/kg cwt 782 867 -10% 641 22% chart
Pig – Eastern Seaboard (60.1–75 kg), average of buyers & sellers 24-Jun Ac/kg cwt 299 289 3% 344 -13% chart
Goat – Eastern States (12.1–16 kg) 01-Jul Ac/kg cwt 723 723 0% 938 -23% chart
Live cattle – Light steers ex Darwin to Indonesia 01-Jul Ac/kg lwt 340 340 0% 290 17% chart
Live sheep – Live wether (Muchea WA saleyard) to Middle East 11-Dec $/head 105 140 -25% N/A N/A chart

Global Dairy Trade (GDT) weighted average prices a

Dairy – Whole milk powder 08-Jul US$/t 3,208 2,829 13% 3,226 -1% chart
Dairy – Skim milk powder 08-Jul US$/t 2,694 2,609 3% 2,047 32% chart
Dairy – Cheddar cheese 08-Jul US$/t 3,762 3,631 4% 4,205 -11% chart
Dairy – Anhydrous milk fat 08-Jul US$/t 3,981 3,993 0% 6,354 -37% 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

The Tableau dashboard may not meet accessibility requirements. For information about the contents of these dashboards contact ABARES.

 
Last reviewed: 16 July 2020
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