2019 new hottest and driest year

At Manilla, NSW, in the twenty years from 2000, the year 2019 was the hottest and the driest, overtaking the year 2018.

Climate logs Manilla 20-years

Climate records kept at 3 Monash Street, Manilla from April 1999 yield these eight graphs of climate variables. The graphs on the left (red) show heat and those on the right (blue) show moisture.
These graphs show the figures for calendar years, not for seasons.
In general, the temperatures in this 20-year record rose, with a pause between 2004 and 2012. Moisture peaked about 2010.
At Manilla, a sudden rise in temperature and fall in rainfall happened after 2017, having been much slower before that.
Dashed horizontal lines mark the normals for the decade from April 1999.

Left column graphs (red)

Yearly Mean Maximum Screen Temperatures

Day temperatures are shown by the mean maximum temperature in the Gill-type thermometer screen. The year 2019, at 27.91°, had the hottest days by far. The year 2018 had 27.13°, and 2002 and 2014 were almost as warm.The coldest days were in 2008 (24.57°) and 2010 (24.60°), followed by 2001 and 2011.
The 4th-order trend line shows a minimum about 2010, followed by a rapid rise.

Yearly Mean Screen Temperatures

This graph shows warmth in general, as in the study of global warming. Daily maximum and daily minimum temperatures are averaged. The year 2019 was the warmest (19.83°), followed by 2018, 2014, and 2009. The coolest year in this century was 2008 (17.19°), followed by 2001, 2011, and 2012.
The 4th-order trend line shows near-constant temperature from 2000 to 2011, followed by a rapid rise.

Yearly Minimum Screen Temperatures

Night temperatures are shown by the mean minimum temperature in the thermometer screen. While 2018 had not had very warm nights, 2019, at 11.75°, had warmest nights as well as days. The next warmest were in 2014, 2010 and 2009. Years with nights cooler than 10° on average were 2012, 2008, 2006 and 2001.
The 4th-order trend line shows a rise from 2000 to 2008, then near-constant temperature to 2014, followed by a rapid rise.

Yearly Subsoil Temperatures

Yearly temperatures in the subsoil (at 750 mm depth) hardly related at all to air temperatures read in the Gill Screen. The best match is in 2008, when the subsoil temperature was lowest (19.00°), as were the screen mean (17.19°) and the screen maximum (24.57°).
[Note that world temperature was low late in 2007.]
Continue reading

January 2020: still 5 drought records

Rainfall status Dec-19, Jan-20

Changing shortages

January rainfall of 46.8 mm further reduced short-term shortages, bringing the 9-month total (212 mm) out of the “extreme shortage” class. Most longer-duration totals remained in that class, however.

Fewer record low rainfalls

By December 2019, there had been 10 new record low rainfalls. Records were set not only for 12-months duration, but for every one of the 9 chosen durations from 24-months to 96-months. In January 2020 there were only 5 new records, although there were 4 2nd-lowest values that also plotted on the 0.1th percentile line. The 5 new records were:

36-months duration: 1098 mm;
48-months duration: 11775 mm;
60-months duration: 2384 mm;
84-months duration: 3419 mm;
96-months duration: 4132 mm.

How to read the graph

This graph shows all the present rainfall shortages at Manilla, short term and long term, as percentile values. The latest values, as at the end of December 2019, are shown by a thick black line with large circles. Those from one month earlier are shown by a thinner line with small diamonds. [The method is described in “Further Explanation” below.]


Further Explanation

The following notes explain aspects of this work under these listed headings:

Data analysis

Cumulative rainfall totals
Percentile values
Severity of rainfall shortages

Limitations of this analysis

Monthly rainfalls form a single population
Observations are not retrospective
The rain gauge failed

Data analysis

Continue reading

December 2019: 10 new drought records

Rainfall status Nov-Dec 2019

Changing shortages

December rainfall of 19.6 mm, added to November rainfall of 40.2 mm, reduced the shortages for durations up to six months, but it did not prevent the drought becoming worse at nearly all longer durations. The shortage was extreme (1st percentile) at every duration beyond 6-months, except at 120-, and 144-months (severe shortage) and at 360-months (serious shortage).Although the 360-month total of 18,596 mm, being at the 10th percentile, is merely a “serious” shortage, this is the lowest 360-month rainfall total since 1952!

Record low rainfalls

New record low rainfall totals were set in December 2019 as follows:

12-months duration: 255 mm;
24-months duration: 582 mm;
30-months duration: 791 mm;
36-months duration: 1099 mm;
42-months duration: 1477 mm;
48-months duration: 1833 mm;
60-months duration: 2455 mm;
72-months duration: 2901 mm;
84-months duration: 3477 mm;
96-months duration: 4146 mm.

For most of these durations, the record had already been broken several times in this drought. However, three of these records had stood for over a century:

42-month duration: 1477 mm beats (by 43 mm) the record of 1520 mm set in September 1914;
48-month duration: 1833 mm beats (by 3 mm) the record of 1836 mm set in February 1915;
60-month duration: 2455 mm beats (by 11 mm) the record of 2466 mm set in February 1916.

How to read the graph

This graph shows all the present rainfall shortages at Manilla, short term and long term, as percentile values. The latest values, as at the end of November 2019, are shown by a thick black line with large circles. Those from one month earlier are shown by a thinner line with small diamonds. [The method is described in “Further Explanation” below.]


Further Explanation

The following notes explain aspects of this work under these listed headings:

Data analysis

Cumulative rainfall totals
Percentile values
Severity of rainfall shortages

Limitations of this analysis

Monthly rainfalls form a single population
Observations are not retrospective
The rain gauge failed

Data analysis

Continue reading

January 2020 more humid

Rain in the main street

It rained!

Weekly average temperatures were 7 deg high early in the month, normal in the third week, then 6 deg high at the end. In these hot weeks, ten days went over 40 deg.
The night of the 11th, at 28.1 deg, was extremely warm. It was the 2nd warmest on record, after 28.2 on 14/01/17.
Although the wettest day had only 22.8 mm of rain, there were 11 rain days. Other signs of moisture included 11 days with half cloud cover or more, and 9 mornings with dew points over 20 deg.

Weather log January 2020

Comparing January months

Mean temperatures this month are the 2nd highest for January, being lower than last year. Subsoil temperature is normal.
All moisture indicators are higher. The early morning dew point, at 16.8 deg, is remarkably high, exceeded only in January 2006.
The rainfall total of 46.8 mm is at the 28th percentile for January, well below the average of 87 mm.

January climae

Drought

I will report separately on the on-going drought that continues to break low-rainfall records at durations of 15-months and longer.


Data. A Bureau of Meteorology automatic rain gauge operates in the museum yard. From 17 March 2017, 9 am daily readings are published as Manilla Museum, Station 55312.  These reports use that rainfall data when it is available. Recording resumed on 20 July 2019.
My estimates of early morning dew point have drifted anomalously low. From August 2019, I use data from the Tamworth Airport published graphs.
All other data, including subsoil at 750 mm, are from 3 Monash Street, Manilla.

3-year trends to January 2020

January much more humid

3-year climate trends to Jan 2020

January raw anomaly data (orange)

Temperatures

Daily maximum temperature anomaly (all x-axes) high, but not now extreme: now only three degrees above 21st century normal.
Daily minimum temperature anomaly (lower left): extremely high, twice as high as the record smoothed value
Subsoil temperature anomaly (lower right): still near normal.

Moistures (moist is at the bottom)

Rainfall anomaly (upper left): no longer extremely low.
Cloudiness anomaly (upper right): back to normal.
Dew point anomaly (middle left): suddenly rather high (humid).
Daily temperature range anomaly (middle right): suddenly narrow, due to cloud.

 Fully smoothed data values (red) 

Smoothed anomaly values now include July of 2019. From the rather static values of the autumn, nearly all smoothed values for June began to move in the direction towards drought that seems to have persisted through spring.
There were two exceptions. Daily minimum temperature anomaly continued to fall. Subsoil temperature anomaly reached a peak value in June.


Notes:

January data points are marked by squares.

Smoothing Continue reading

2019 Climate by months

Monthly temp and rain 2019

The climate at Manilla, NSW,was extremely hot and dry in nearly all the months of 2019.

Mean temperature

In a normal year (See note below: “Manilla temperature Normals”), Manilla’s mean temperature has a cycle close to a sine-wave , being highest in January (25.9 deg) and lowest in July (9.5 deg). In 2019, the shape differed only in June being cooler than July.
Remarkably, every month of 2019 was warmer than normal. June, August and September were warmer by less than 1 deg, but December was 3 deg warmer, and January 5 deg warmer.

Monthly rainfall

Normally, Manilla’s monthly rainfall pattern (see note below) has two modes, with a main peak in January and a second peak in June. In 2019 there was no such pattern. Rainfall in most months was about 40 mm below normal, and was even lower in January, February and December. Only March and May had rainfall somewhat above normal.


Notes

Manilla Temperature Normals

The town of Manilla, NSW, had no recognised record of temperatures. When I had collected data for more than a decade, I felt the need to set up “normals” to compare actual values with those that are usual.

[Earlier, I quoted various official definitions of climatic normals in this post.
A climate normal is commonly taken as an average over three decades. To serve my purpose, I judged that a decade of data would be sufficiently stable.]

I based my normals on temperatures observed through the decade beginning 1 March 1999. I found mean values for the (366) days of the year, then made a more regular curve by using first, second and third harmonics.

Manilla temp normals

The graph shows mean maximum, mean average and mean minimum curves, as well as the resulting curve of daily temperature range. Numerical values that were posted earlier are repeated here:

Manilla’s dates of expected highest and lowest air temperatures during the year are marked on every “Weather” graph that is included in a monthly weather report in this blog. Each graph has curved dashed lines showing the “Normal” temperatures (Maximum, Mean, and Minimum) for each day of the year. The highest and lowest values in the annual cycle are marked on these curves. This list gives the dates of peaks and troughs and their seasonal lags in days after the solstice.
Highest daily maximum temperature (34.04°): January 20-21 (lag 31 days);
Highest daily mean temperature (26.19°): January 25 (lag 35 days);
Highest daily minimum temperature (18.44°): January 31 – February 1 (lag 42 days);
Lowest daily maximum temperature (16.91°): July 8 (lag 17 days);
Lowest daily mean temperature (9.35°): July 10 (lag 19 days);
Lowest daily minimum temperature (1.78°): July 13 (lag 22 days).

Apart from the peaks and troughs, one can see that the curves show a steeper rise in early spring. The rise is more marked and earlier for the maximum curve. This results in a wider daily temperature range at that time.

Manilla’s monthly rainfall pattern

As my normals for the rainfall of calendar months, I have adopted the mean values recorded in the 125 years 1884 to 2008 at Manilla Post Office, Station 055031. Values are shown in this table:

Manilla monthly rain normals.

Model of seasonal rainfall, ManillaIn the post of 20 June 2013, “A Seasonal Rainfall Model for Manilla, NSW”, I showed that the observed seasonal pattern fits very well to a model of two Gaussian curves of almost equal width but unequal height. The higher (summer) curve peaks at 84 mm/month near 27 December, while the lower (winter) curve peaks at 42 mm/month near 27 June. The peaks lag just 6 days after the solstices, and do not show the long and unequal seasonal lags that are seen in temperature data (above).

[There are discrepancies of less than 1 mm in monthly rainfall normal values between the table above and those cited in 2013. As the normal period, I replaced 1883 to 2007 with the more secure period 1884 to 2008.]

December 2019: very hot and dry

Sun in smoke

Red Sun 17 Dec

After the first week, each week in December was very hot, reading up to 5.9° above normal. Both days and nights were hot, but only one record was set: 42.2° on the 21st was the hottest December day. That was well below the record hot day of 44.9° set on 11/2/17.
Twenty mornings were cloudless which was twice the usual number. Smoke from mainly coastal bushfires reduced visibility to 15 km or less from the 8th to the 25th. Early in the month, rain fell on three days, the highest reading being 12.4 mm on the first day.

December 2019 weather

Comparing December months

This month broke 21st century records for December mean monthly temperatures. The mean minimum of 18.7° just beat 18.6° of December 2009, the mean average of 27.6° easily beat 26.1° last year, while the mean maximum of 36.5° was far above last year’s 33.9°.
On balance, indicators of moisture make this the driest December of the century. Rainfall, at 19.6 mm, was lower than any but December 2006 (18.8 mm), and the dew point was equal lowest with 2013. This month had by far the fewest cloudy mornings (10%) and the widest daily temperature range (17.8°).

December 2019 climate

Drought

I will report separately on the on-going drought that continues to break low-rainfall records at durations of 15-months and longer.


Data. A Bureau of Meteorology automatic rain gauge operates in the museum yard. From 17 March 2017, 9 am daily readings are published as Manilla Museum, Station 55312.  These reports use that rainfall data when it is available. Recording resumed on 20 July 2019.
My estimates of early morning dew point have drifted anomalously low. From August 2019, I use data from the Tamworth Airport published graphs.
All other data, including subsoil at 750 mm, are from 3 Monash Street, Manilla.