Victorians noted wetter and warmer trends in the past year

Rain returned and eastern areas were hotter during 2020

Last year, Victoria's rainfall and temperature patterns were consistent with long-term national warming trends.

Last year, Victoria's rainfall and temperature patterns were consistent with long-term national warming trends.


Bureau says during 2020, Victoria experienced a return of rain and higher temps in the east.


Data shows 2020 was Australia's fourth warmest year on record since 1900.

But temperatures were not as extreme across most of Victoria as they were for parts of northern and western Australia during the year.

Victoria's annual mean temperature was 0.47°C above average.

The state's daytime temperatures were close to average across the state away from parts of Gippsland and the north east, where they were higher than average.

Night-time temperatures were above average in most of eastern and southern Victoria, and the highest on record for parts of Victoria's far east.

The area averaged annual rainfall for Australia and Victoria was close to normal - at 4 per cent and 1 per cent above the 1961-1990 average, respectively.

In Victoria, there were scattered areas of above average rainfall across the centre and south.

Elsewhere, 2020 totals were mostly close to average.

Most months during the year were drier than average.

But several months, particularly in the first half of the year, were wetter than average - including the third wettest April on record.

Following Australia's driest year on record in 2019, a very dry 2018 for the south east mainland and a dry 2017 for the Murray-Darling Basin (MDB), there were significant rainfall deficiencies recorded across much of Australia at the start of 2020.

Water storages in the southern MDB had significant increases during 2020, but storage levels in the northern Basin remained low at the end of the year.

Australia and Victoria's 2020 rainfall and temperature patterns were consistent with long-term warming trends - or climate change - and the impact of the natural climate drivers around us - or natural variability.

The El Nino-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) in the Pacific moved to La Nina by September and reached moderate strength towards the end of the year.

This contributed to above average rainfall across big parts of Australia - and areas of Victoria at times - during August, September, October and December.

The Southern Annular Mode (SAM) favoured reduced rainfall over southern Victoria during May and June, but it enhanced rainfall across parts of eastern Victoria and southern New South Wales at times in August.

It also reinforced the wet La Nina signal in early November and for much of December.

In addition to natural drivers, Australia's climate is increasingly affected by global warming.

The country's annual mean temperature warmed by about 1.44°C between 1910 and 2019.

Most of the warming has occurred since 1950.


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