Date: 28 Apr 2022
Seasonal climate risk information for Southern NSW
Volume 4 | Issue 4 | 28 April 2022
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Rainfall has generally been higher over April especially in the Mallee and southern Riverina where an amazingly good start with 35mm plus will lead to timely sowing. The Central West was also wetter with 50mm plus and over 100mm around Dubbo which is now too much and making planting a challenge. Regions of the western slopes and around Albury were drier than normal up to 26 April. Modelled soil moisture is ranked wetter than normal in most areas bar the western slopes and far eastern Riverina. Soil moisture probes are still ranked unseasonably high and remained stable in most areas with rainfall equalling evaporation or plant water use.
The eastern Pacific Ocean remains cooler to depth and slightly increased in extent, capable of further La Niña activity, but the surface temperatures have become closer to normal. Trade winds are a bit stronger in the western Pacific but could be more convincing. They are still holding warmer water to our north particularly south of the Equator. Cloud patterns at the Dateline and a strengthening SOI indicate that the atmosphere is not quite ready to give up on La Niña like behaviour. Seas are very warm to Australia’s north and evaporating more moisture, lowering the pressure. Models are generally leaning towards the neutral Pacific continuing, but 4/12 models pick it back up again for a third La Niña in a row. The Indian Ocean is completely normal with basin-wide warming. Some stronger westerly wind towards Java is likely to increase warming in this region, something a number of models are predicting. All models predict a negative Indian Ocean Dipole to form in coming months, but this is an unreliable time of the year for IOD prediction. It’s also not completely obvious where the model signal is coming from. Just slightly warmer water to depth and the stronger westerly wind activity is all that can be seen at the moment.
The Southern Annular Mode has stayed positive for another month and this can have erratic effects in autumn. The stronger easterly wind seems to be more summer like in its increased rainfall effect and rain shadowing the western slopes. The lower pressure all the way to the tropics is an easy pathway for moisture to get down to SNSW.
My assessment of 12 climate models for SNSW shows likely wetter rainfall and mixed temperature predictions for the next three months.
People are reminded that in autumn, the resetting nature of the tropical oceans makes it an uncertain time for predictions for both autumn and winter. For more information about the autumn predictability barrier check out our eLearn: https://rise.articulate.com/share/laU0Fh8td92Wodvmg6M6kQZLovAJCNgx
Model distribution summary for the next three months
Model distribution summary for the next four to six months
Model consensus forecast for the next six months
Current outlook (28 April)
Previous outlook (28 March)
Slightly cool / cool
Cool (La Niña)
Slightly cool /
Sea surface temperature anomalies
Equatorial Pacific sub-sea temperature anomalies
Southern Oscillation Index
Dipole Mode Index (DMI)
Pacific Ocean surface wind anomalies
World cloudiness anomalies
Southern Annular Mode
Air pressure anomalies
Modelled Climate and Ocean Predictions for Southern NSW from April 2022 run models
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