There’s no denying we all felt it – last year was an absolute scorcher.
Here are the events and facts that lead to Australia’s hottest & driest year to date.
FAST CLIMATE FACTS
- 2019 was Australia’s warmest and driest year on record, with temperatures 1.52degC above the average.
- The previous driest year was in 1902, and the hottest in 2013, when temperatures were 1.33degC above the average, compared to 1.52 degC above average last year.
- There were heatwaves in January and December, with high temperatures recorded across much of the country.
- It was also the warmest year on record for NSW and Western Australia; and one of the top 10 warmest for Queensland, Victoria, South Australia and the Northern Territory.
- It brought the highest mean maximum temperatures on record for Brisbane, Canberra, Hobart and Sydney.
- Much of the country was affected by drought.
SIGNIFICANT CLIMATE EVENTS
- Severe tropical cyclone Veronica caused major flooding in the Pilbara region in northern Western Australia in March.
- A significant lack of rainfall across WA’s southwest.
- Darwin had a late monsoon for both the 2018-2019 and 2019-2020 seasons.
- Unusually late tropical cyclones hit in May, with Lili in the Top End and Ann in Queensland.
- Queensland’s Gulf Country, Townsville and large parts of the state’s west flooded from January to April, killing of hundreds of thousands of livestock.
- The southeast corner of Queensland was hit by severe storms in November and early December.
- Bushfires stretched from southern Queensland to eastern NSW from September, in what was the beginning of a horrific fire season.
- NSW was affected by severe storms in late November.
- Further south, bushfires raged in Gippsland and northeast Victoria from summer to autumn, and from spring through December and into the new year.
- Rainfall in the Gippsland region was severely low, and parts of the inland southeast felt their coolest mean minimum temperatures on record in August.
- Bushfires tore through remote bushland across Tasmania from summer to autumn.
- In South Australia, the lowest rainfall on record was recorded between July and December, however Lake Eyre/Kati Thanda received its most significant filling since 2010/11.