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Key Water Blog

BOM Special Climate Statement – drought conditions statement 9th April 2019

Special Climate Statement 70—drought conditions in eastern Australia and impact on water resources in the Murray–Darling Basin

Main points

The statement focuses on the persistence of dry conditions since November 2018 when the last special climate statement ‘Special Climate Statement 66 – an abnormally dry period in Eastern Australia‘ came out.

New South Wales has been the focus of the notable dry conditions. On 1- to 2-year timeframes (to the end of March 2019), the rainfall deficiencies in the Murray-Darling Basin are third lowest on record behind similar length timeframes between 1901 and 1903, and between 1918 and 1920.

Australia’s hottest summer on record was this year 2018-2019

A rainfall total of 644.7 mm for the 24-month period since April 2017 was recorded for the MDB. This is the
third-lowest on record for the Basin since national records began in 1900. At this timescale, only April 1918 to March 1920 (626.2 mm) and April 1901 to February 1903 (638.2 mm) had less rainfall for the MDB. If dry conditions continue through 2019, this event may approach these records, noting that 1903 and 1920 brought increased rainfall as the year progressed.

To read it all click here

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