The cooling and greening of Wollongong (and Eastern Australia)

Rain, rain, rain. We are all La Nina-ed out here in The Gong! But the green things love it.



It’s hard to imagine global warming at the moment…

Maximum temperatures averaged across Australia were 0.55°C below normal, 11th coolest in 62 years of record. Most of the country was close to normal, with parts of the west and east significantly cooler than normal. NSW had a particularly cool summer, with an anomaly of −1.71°C, the 2nd coolest on record. Conversely, Tasmania had a particularly warm summer, measuring its 3rd warmest summer.

Temperatures more than 1°C cooler than normal were recorded over the WA interior extending into northwest SA, as well as southern Queensland and the northeastern half of NSW. Anomalies of −3 to −4°C were recorded in an area from Charleville in Queensland, south to Dubbo in NSW. Large parts of these regions were in the bottom decile of maximum temperature records, with a large area of decile 1 in the WA interior, and also covering much of southern Queensland and northeast NSW. A large part of northeast NSW recorded its coolest summer on record (29% of the NSW area). Heavy rainfall during summer was a major contributor to these low maximum temperatures…


Or, to visualise:


Of course those of us very long in the tooth have been here before, as I recalled in December 2010: Thursday poetry video: Dorothea Mackellar plus weather. And I wouldn’t let the weather in our spot on the globe trick you into assumptions about climate either. There are other spots, and a bigger picture, as again can be visualised.


See State of the Climate Global Analysis January 2012.

The combined global land and ocean average surface temperature for January 2012 was the 19th warmest on record at 12.35°C (54.23°F), which is 0.35°C (0.63°F) above the 20th century average of 12.0°C (53.6°F). The margin of error associated with this temperature is +/- 0.08°C (0.14°F). This January is the coolest of all months on record since February 2008. However, it also marks the 26th January and 323rd consecutive month with a global temperature above the 20th century average. The last month with below average temperatures was February 1985.

However, that doesn’t affect the fact we here in The Gong have had a dog a a summer, in some ways. Mind you I don’t really miss runs of 40C days!

The Illawarra Mercury has a nice slide show for this grey season just past.