Australians hoping for a reprieve from the nation‘s record rainfall are in for some bad news, with above average rain forecast for most of the country throughout winter.
The Bureau of Meteorology’ Winter 2022 Climate Outlook said the conditions expected in parts of NSW, South Australia, Queensland and the Northern Territory were likely to be in the top 20 per cent for the wettest winters experienced in those jurisdictions.
The bureau said this winter rain would only extend the flood risk in southeast Australia, with floodwaters in low-lying Queensland and NSW areas expected to slowly move inland towards SA,
However, much of WA’s South West Land Division and western Tasmania are likely to be spared from this June to August deluge, with below average rainfall forecast in those regions.
The weakening of the La Nina weather phenomenon is one climate factor in the high amount of expected rain.
It comes after the bureau released a statement on the “extreme” rainfall and flooding in South East Queensland and eastern NSW during February and March.
Several rainfall records were broken between February 22 and March 9, with more than 50 areas recording more than 1000mm of rainfall in one week.
Climate change was mentioned as a possible cause in the report due to global warming increasing the likelihood of heavy rainfall.
“As the climate warms, heavy rainfall events are expected to continue to become more intense,” the Special Climate Statement 76 said.
“A warmer atmosphere can hold more water vapour than a cooler atmosphere, and this relationship alone can increase moisture in the atmosphere by 7 per cent per 1 degree Celsius of global warming.
“This can cause an increased likelihood of heavy rainfall events.”
Other winter projections from the bureau include above average maximum temperatures for north, southwest and far southeast Australia, but it is expected to generally be below average elsewhere.
Minimum temperatures are also likely to be warmer than normal for most of the country.